Russell leads charge at state titles
SAWTELL'S Kayla Russell led the North Coast charge with two gold medals at the NSW Surf Life Saving Championships at Blacksmiths Beach at the weekend.
Russell had a great weekend, winning five medals in all.
She proved herself the chairwoman of the board in flat surf, winning both the open and under-19 board race titles.
But her medal haul didn't stop there.
Russell teamed with Kyla Brogmus to finish second in the open board rescue, while the pair finished third in the under-19 version of the same event.
In the under-19 race, their clubmates Sarah Tisdell and Marlee Green placed fourth.
Russell, Tisdell and Alexandra Barnes took the bronze medal in the under-19 board relay.
- Meanwhile, former Sawtell stars Courtney and Bonnie Hancock both won three gold medals apiece for Northcliffe at the Queensland State Championships.
On a busy weekend for the sisters, Courtney beat a strong field to win the blue ribbon open ironwoman as well as the open board race and the open surf teams.
In the ironwoman, she was among five leaders who came out of the ski together and paddled out towards the cans on their boards before making the decisive move.
The 20-year-old caught a runner that turned into a race-breaking wave.
Courtney, who won the Ocean Assault ironwoman grand final earlier this year, said she was thrilled with the result.
“That was really tough. There were four of us all going for it at the end there,” she said.
“I got that one runner and I just went for it. I felt really good at the end.
“There are so many of us girls who are all at the same level at the moment, so I was really happy to get that win in the end.”
Bonnie won 10 medals over the weekend, taking three silver medals in open teams events and another seven in the under-19s.
Her wins came in the under-19 board relay, surf race and surf teams, while she placed third in the under-19 iron- woman.
The sisters teamed to take the silver medal in both the open board rescue and the open taplin relay.