Sport

Mercer a target as surf series gets under way on Coast

ONE TO BEAT: Reigning Nutri-Grain Ironwoman Series champion Jordan Mercer will be in action at Alexandra Headland this weekend.
ONE TO BEAT: Reigning Nutri-Grain Ironwoman Series champion Jordan Mercer will be in action at Alexandra Headland this weekend. Che Chapman

SURF LIFESAVING: Reigning Nutri-Grain Ironwoman Series champion Jordan Mercer knows she's got a target on her back and is braced for a new wave of contenders as a revamped Summer of Surf gets under way at Alexandra Headland this weekend.

The Noosa Heads 22-year-old expects to be seriously challenged by established competitors and by a host of enthusiastic prospects desperately chasing qualifying points for next year's Nutri-Grain Finals Series.

"I'm going to be racing against some up-and-coming superstars who have trained hard and are primed to be at 100% for this event,” she said.

"They will be racing at their optimum so I know the pace is going to be on.”

And most of them are out to get her.

"There's going to be that extra pressure and expectation (of being the reigning summer champ),” she admitted.

It's a new look for surf lifesaving this summer, particularly at the elite level.

There will be six rounds of the Nutri-Grain Ironman and Ironwoman Series, which will be held at the six Summer of Surf carnivals.

Competitors' best three results will be tallied and the top five men and women will earn berths in the Nutri-Grain Finals Series at Surfers Paradise, where they will compete against 13 men and women who were granted automatic entry following their results last summer (including Mercer).

The winner of the interstate championships and a wild card will also be included in the finals series, which will boast a $200,000 prize pool.

So Mercer and some of the top athletes don't have to compete this weekend but many will because it's a good opportunity to stay race savvy and build towards the finals series.

"By the time we get to the end of the year and working into January I want to be at my peak fitness and ready to go,” Mercer said.

"I'm going to be racing to win (this weekend) but I know I have a lot more time to build to where I want to be for the tail-end of the season.”

Mercer is still nursing an ankle injury, which forced her to withdraw her entry from the Coolangatta Gold. She feels some pain but has "made some progress on it”.

Last year's runner-up Kirsty Higgison, who has left Noosa to link with Surfers Paradise, is set to race this weekend.

In the men's field, Northcliffe superstar Shannon Eckstein is likely to compete, as will Kurrawa's Matt Bevilacqua.

Each Summer of Surf event also includes a range of other individual and team events, with prize money, which Mercer will also compete in.

Topics:  jordan mercer nutri-grain ironman series nutri-grain ironwoman series summer of surf


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Buskers have time to enter Noosa comp

GET ENTRIES IN: Australian National Busking Championships are coming to Noosa.

Deadline extended for National Busking Championships in Noosa

Road closures and changed conditions start this weekend

DELAYS EXPECTED: Heading home through North Toowoomba this afternoon? Congestion is expected as Transport and Main Roads carry out works on Ruthven St between Campbell and Bridge Sts.

Sporting event and road works will impact traffic from Sunday

Biggest Morning Tea upsizes to fight cancer

Annie Evans from Cancer Council Noosa organised this year's biggest morning tea at the Noosa Boathouse.

Morning tea raises more than $3000

Local Partners

Shot at the live shows slips through Sally's fingers

SUNSHINE Coast singer's dramatic elimination from The Voice nearly saw her form a duo with her battle round opponent.

Ben Stiller and Christine Taylor split after 17 years

They were married in May 2000 and have two children, who they said will remain their priority.

Ben Stiller and his wife Christine Taylor have called it a day

Why The Voice hasn't produced a star

Boy George responds to Brittania Clifford-Pugh's heart-warming message.

It's the industry, not the show, says Boy George

These actors hated their movies and didn’t mind admitting it

Channing Tatum and Marlon Wayans in a scene from GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra.

Every year, Hollywood blesses us with plenty of God awful movies.

Miranda Kerr and fiance hang up backyard tent for wedding

The decorators and caterers are arriving for the final preparations for the wedding of Miranda Kerr and Evan Spiegel. Pictures: Splash

Evan Spiegel and Miranda Kerr are set to marry today

Book review: Mia Freedman's book meets her critics head on

I appreciated Freedman's blunt honesty in the book

Man's amazing comeback from monster crisis

Pat O'Driscoll agents Penny Keating and Doug Webber sold 56 Agnes St, The Range at auction over the weekend.

NOT long ago, he sold his possessions to pay staff. Now he's back.

Report reveals progress on $319m airport upgrade

Aerials of the Sunshine Coast.Jetstar plane in front of the Susnhine Coast terminal, Sunshine Coast Airport.

Over two dozen government approvals needed for airport expansion

Lost dough leaves sour taste after company collapse

Kathleen and John Mahoney from Sugar and Spice Bakery were stung after the collapse of Cantro Pty Ltd and are still owed money.

Supermarket operator collapse leaves sour taste for bakery

Open for inspection homes May 25-31

Check out this weekend's homes open for inspection

Privacy and views in the heart of Noosa

Immaculate residence in exclusive Noosa Heads gated community

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!