Kendrick Louis takes out victory in Western Australia. Source: Supplied
RISING star Kendrick Louis has eclipsed surf great Shannon Eckstein in a sprint battle up the beach to claim round two honours in the Nutri-Grain ironman series at Smiths Beach, Western Australia, this afternoon.
Louis, an unlucky third in Saturday’s opener, bounced back to pip Eckstein at the finish line for victory in the second round eliminator in small surf at the Margaret River.
“It just goes to prove that what happens one day doesn’t always matter the next,” said Louis, 23, who lost his round one lead late in the race after missing a wave,.
“I knew it wasn’t going to be easy to beat Shannon today and it wasn’t.
“But I just put my head down and went for it.”
The pair raced most of the ski, swim, board six-man eliminator finale side-by-side and rode the same wave to the beach at the end of the final leg.
“I got up and knew I had to just put everything into it,” said Louis who gained a quick edge on Eckstein on the sand to set up his round two win.
While Eckstein was shaded by Louis in their latest stoush he still leads the six-round Nutri-Grain series overall after his win in Saturday’s opening round in bigger surf.
London Olympic open water swimmer Ky Hurst finished third in the eliminator to end the weekend with a second and third placing.
FORMER beautician Courtney Hancock has raced to a healthy lead in the Nutri-Grain ironwoman series after posting back-to-back wins in the opening rounds at Smiths Beach in Western Australia.
The defending series champion and Gold Coast surf lifesaver won the opening round of the six-leg competition on Saturday before backing up today with another victory over the top ironwomen in the country.
Courtney Hancock, winner, Kelloggs NutriGrain Surf IronWoman 2013/2014, Smiths Beach. Source:Supplied
Racing a three-race eliminator format, Hancock survived two tough battles in the surf before running off with the round victory in the six-woman finale raced in 1m surf.
Hancock crossed the finish line in the deciding race of the day well ahead of youngster Maddy Dunn and veteran Kristyl Smith, who sprinted to the finish line to fill the minor placings.
Former series winner Liz Pluimers, like Smith on a comeback to the sport after a break, finished fourth.
Hancock also dominated in Saturday’s 2m seas which saw the ski leg cut from the ironwoman racing.
“I feel good, I’m happy and I think that is showing in my racing,” Hancock said.
“I just felt good out there today and I couldn’t be happier with the result.
“A perfect start is more than I could ever have hoped for.”