Duncan rebounds to finish first, second

Courtney Duncan has rebounded perfectly for a double-podium finish.

The defending world champion finished first and second in her two races in Lugo, Spain, in round three of the FIM Women’s Motocross World Championship at the weekend.

It was just the response she wanted after finishing a disappointing fifth and ninth by her standards after the opening two rounds last month.

Duncan, competing for her F&H Racing team, had the better of the start in the first race over Lotte Van Drunen, of the Netherlands, who trailed in sixth.

The Dunedin rider held the pace up front, while Van Drunen battled her way to the front of the pack to push for top spot and soon sat behind her.

Duncan fended off Van Drunen’s run and pulled off a brilliant triple jump with a couple of laps remaining to keep the lead ahead of Van Drunen and secure her first win of the season. Van Drunen finished second.

In the second race, Duncan again came out firing and led after the first turn with Van Drunen again hot on her tail.

Duncan led by 2.2sec and Van Drunen worked to reduce the margin, but in lap eight, the Dutch rider gained momentum and worked to wear down Duncan.

Heading into the waves, Van Drunen made her run and jumped better to pressure Duncan, who nearly fell and let Van Drunen take the lead.

Duncan finished second — and level on points overall — behind Van Drunen, who leads the overall series.

Duncan now sits fifth on the WMX standings overall, just five points behind Italian Kiara Fontanesi in third, as she heads into the next round in Germany later this month.