GYMPIE'S Sport Star of the Year has returned to town to receive her trophy after spending the past month either on a volleyball court for her school, state or country merit team or jet-setting for a well-deserved break.
After being announced Gympie's Sport Star of the Year in December, Mykaela Faulkner was finally awarded her trophy and winnings yesterday.
Faulkner was unable to attend the December Sports Star presentation as she was busy playing for Tin Can Bay State School at the Australian Volleyball Schools' Cup in Melbourne where her under-15 girls team finished in seventh place nationally.
She was kept busy with an Australian Institute of Sport training camp held directly after the schools' cup.
Since then the volleyball star has been overseas for one hard-earned break with her family, and while she is back in town, unfortunately for Gympie that won't last long.
Faulkner and her Tin Can Bay-based family, including mother Susan, made a difficult choice to relocate to the Gold Coast in order to accommodate Faulkner's rigorous training schedule with the Australian Institute of Sport.
Faulkner will begin training four times a week with the Gold Coast arm of the AIS from February 5 and has enrolled with Benowa State High School which boasts special attention to a range of sports including volleyball.
While she will leave behind a host of close friends, the move is all part of the goal she has been chasing for the past two years - to wear the Australian colours.
Technically, she's already marked off this achievement, having been named in an Australian junior merit team, but Faulkner isn't satisfied and said she would pursue the goal until she represents Australia at a full-blown competition.
Faulkner said she's hoping that competition would be the Asian Cup, 2014, in Thailand.
The road to victory will see Faulkner try out for the U17 Queensland team later this year as well as the South Coast team.
After her brief break, Faulkner will pick up where she left off from her journey, starting with a National Beach Volleyball Training Camp for Queensland-based athletes at the Queensland Academy of Sport next week.