ATHLETES from near and far will flock to Maryborough on New Year's Day to compete at the highland gathering.\
Many previous winners at Princes Park will be aiming to start 2014 by claiming a slice of the $25,000 prize pool.
Highlight of the day is the Bendigo Bank Maryborough Gift (120m).
Contenders for the sprint classic include Joel Bee off 1m, Shaun Hargreaves, 6m; Cam Dunbar, 7.25m; and Flora Hill's Jack Dooley, 9.75m.
The open 400m field includes Dooley off 24m.
Bendigo is well represented at this meet.
Father and sons Greg, Jake and Kyle Hilson will be heading to Princes Park, as will mother and son Kerrieanne and Mitchell Hocking.
The Nodens continue the tradition of racing at Maryborough, with Peter, Phil, Jesse and Tom to dash around Princes Park.
Bendigo's biggest entry is in the novice 400m where Tom Savage, 32m; Jacob Nolan 36; Jake Hilson 40; David Morrissey 40; Tom Noden 48; Dane Heiden 50; Kyle Hilson 84; and Kaitlyn Bryce 92m line up in various heats.
One of the most experienced competitors on the track will be Eaglehawk's Glenn Stephens.
A past winner of the Bendigo Thousand 120m and Black Opal 400m on his home track, Stephens has nominated for the open 70m, open 200m, and veterans 120m for New Year's Day.
The athletics action on Wednesday starts at 10am.
Admission prices are $14 adult, $7 aged pensioner, $28 family two adults and children under-16, $5 ages 12 to 16 years.