Dubbo's Nicholas Steepe second in 2018 Mr Gay Pride Australia

Nicholas Steepe has been named runner-up in the 2018 Mr Gay Pride Australia competition.

The 23-year-old from Dubbo impressed the judges throughout a packed weekend of activities before the winners were announced on stage at Melbourne’s Midsumma Carnival.

As he claimed second place he was cheered by thousands at the site, as well as from supporters at Dubbo.

The 23-year-old, a leader within Dubbo’s gay community, was among 30 applications from across the country for the competition run by the Australian Pride Network and one of seven finalists.

Mr Gay Pride Australia co-producer Tony Richens said it was a huge achievement by Mr Steepe.

“He was so close to winning,” he said.

Mr Richens said they had known little about Mr Steepe other than his application before he arrived in Melbourne for the weekend.

“He was super-impressive, with his history and his background… but also his future plans.”