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Belmont Girl Tops The Field

Belmont Girl Tops The Field

What: Model For Life Grand Final
Where: Newcastle Panthers

IN front of a capacity crowd at NEWCASTLE PANTHERS last week, JOELLE GABRIELLE came through as the Hunter Region's top catwalk queen at the MODEL FOR LIFE grand final.

The 18-year-old from Belmont has competed as a grand finalist for the past two years and finally took out the title this year.

Crowned the 2004 Model For Life winner, Gabrielle said she was most excited about the $5000 savings account she was awarded from the Commonwealth Bank.

``Wow, have I really won $5000?'' Gabrielle asked after her win.

As well as the savings account, Gabrielle will join PLATFORM MODEL MANAGEMENT, the agency behind JENNIFER HAWKINS, and take a break at Twin Towns Resort in Tweed Heads as part of her win.

Gabrielle is a radiation therapy student at Newcastle University and said she hoped to use that training to travel the world.

The runner-up in the adult category was Public Relations manager, 18-year-old BREE LEVICK from North Lambton. Both contestants beat off a field of 50 finalists to take the titles.

The popular Tiny Tots section was taken out by four year-old JORDAN SHEARER from Winmalee, followed closely by NAMAYA BUDIYASA, 5, from Edgeworth.

The competition's Junior category proved tough for the judges who awarded a tie for the runner up.

Maryland's SOPHIE COLE was the clear winner, taking out her second Model For Life title after winning the same category in 2002.

Runners-up in the category, which was a first in the history of Model For Life, went to 11-year-old JACK O'CONNOR and 12-year-old SOFIIA KEMP. Taking out the Teenage category was 14-year-old SOPHIE ELVIN from Valentine.

Elvin, who said her ambition is to be a model, was followed closely by 15-year-old GABRIELLE SCOLLAY from Forster.

Scollay is no stranger to the modelling industry, having competed in last year's Model For Life grand final and currently holding the Miss Beach Girl title.

For the second year, the SEARCH FOR THE FACE OF SUKI formed an element of the Model For Life competition.

ISABELLA HUNTER, from Bondi, will be seen in the Face of Suki's national and international marketing for 2004 and 2005.

TRACY MCKELLIGOTT, who is the managing director of HELEN DUNCAN PROMOTIONS and organiser of Model For Life, said the event continued to exceed expectations each year.

``We were overwhelmed again this year with the crowd numbers for the grand final on Saturday evening and we couldn't have hoped for a more receptive audience,'' McKelligott said.

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