Courtney Hancock triumphed in the 2013-14 Nutri-Grain Ironwoman series despite disaster almost bringing her undone twice in today’s final at Coolum.
With the ocean like a washing machine, Courtney lost her ski in race one, leaving her third last and on the verge of early elimination.
But her champion qualities came to the forefront and an incredible swim leg kept chances alive and put her into race two.
It meant Courtney only just scraped through to the final in 10th position and stormed home in the final to claim the bronze medal position behind teenager Maddy Dunn and Harriet Brown.
“Words can not describe how this feels,” Courtney said.
“I feel I raced really well this year and I’m still improving.”
Next target is winning the Australian Ironwoman titles at the nationals in Perth in April.