Multisport Magazine Issue 22 - Page 16

FEATURE STORY “I was at the physio a couple of hours every day this week and I had an amazing team around me to get me to the line. "I was still a bit nervous about it this morning and hoping that run wouldn’t turn into a sprint finish. It ’s a bit sore but thankfully it lasted and I can put my feet up now.” The injury scare prompted Day to write the word ‘believe’ on his left hand, and he kept looking at it for inspiration throughout the race. “I’ve seen the footy players do it all the time and I thought, ‘Why not, I’ll do it too’, he said. “I kept looking down at it and believing – that was the word for me today.” Bevilacqua finished comfortably in second place but was almost relegated to third when penalised three minutes for missing a gate during the board leg. The penalty meant he was officially just two seconds ahead of Wright, who produced a storming finish. Tears flow as Hancock Wins Coolangatta Gold In the Coolangatta Gold elite women’s race, Northcliffe’ s Courtney Hancock battled to hold back tears as she won her second title in the surf lifesaving marathon ahead of Allie Britton (North Burleigh) and Rebecca Creedy (Kurrawa). Hancock took the elite women’s crown in 2011 but has had to endure some frustrating results in the intervening years. The joy and relief at finally winning again, mixed with exhaustion, saw her on the verge of breaking down as she crossed the line in 4:29.07 and slumped into a chair. “I felt very emotional seeing all my family there, because you never know how many races you’ve got left as an athlete,” she said. “You just have to make the most of every single race.” Hancock was challenged early by Britton and Rebecca Creedy, but took charge in the 3.5km swim and pulled away to a comfortable win. Britton finished second just under three minutes behind Hancock, while Creedy was another four minutes back in third place. “I woke up this morning and I thought if I could put it together it will be the best race ever,” Hancock said. “In the last two years I have felt really good in races but it’s been really frustrating for me. I have been so close. “I felt really good at Aussies, and then got smashed after feeling like I was in the best form of my life.” Hancock was feeling so good ahead of the race she had to force herself to relax. “I knew all week I felt something special, I felt really, really good,” she said. “I was getting my iPod ready last night and I started dancing and I said, ‘Slow down Courtney, keep that energy for tomorrow, you are going to be racing for over four hours.” Like Day, Hancock was far enough ahead of her rivals to be able to soak up the adulation of the friends and fans who lined the chute to the finish. “I’m just so pleased it wasn’ t a sprint finish, I’ll never forget that in 2011, so I actually walked up the stairs (to soak it all in),” she said. “It was really really nice to win a Coolangatta Gold and to take it all in. That was an absolute dream come true. “I basically raced that race today how I wanted to. I knew the other girls were going to be really, really tough, but without doubt that was my favourite race I’ ve done so far.” Courtney Hancock | Photo: Harv Pix 16 | MULTISPORT MAGAZINE