Battling back!

COURTNEY Hancock bounced back from a disappointing first round to finish fifth in round two of the Kellogg's Nutri-Grain Series at Kurrawa Beach yesterday.

The former Sawtell star was a forlorn sight after struggling throughout the opening round on Saturday, finishing well back in the elite 18-strong field.

But the new day seemed to reinvigorate the 20-year-old and she showed more of the form that has made her the talk of Queensland surf carnivals this season.

Racing under the eliminator format, Courtney comfortably qualified through the first race into the decisive nine-person second race.

She was then in the top three after the opening swim leg but struck trouble on the ski as she tried to get through the pounding shore break. Despite the setback, she finished the ski in fourth place but then also struck trouble in the board and finished in fifth. Her day improved further when she took her Northern NSW Hammers team to victory in the Taplin relay.

Bonnie Hancock was eliminated in the first round yesterday but showed good form in the Ironwoman on Saturday.

Well positioned from the start, Bonnie finished the board leg in third place and then made her move in the swim.

By halfway she was in second place, just behind leader Kristyl Smith and looking capable of causing an upset. However she was undone during the ski leg when the fast pace in tough conditions began to take its toll. Midway through the ski she had slipped to fifth place and then fell off on the way back to beach, finishing 11th overall.

The third and fourth rounds of the Kellogg's Nutri-Grain Series will be held at Coolum on February 7 and 8.



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