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Bonnie Hancock Travels from Gold Coast, QLD

Bonnie Hancock


  • Achievements
  • Female Speaker
  • Goal Setting
  • Health
  • Inspirational
  • Motivational
  • Resilience
  • Risk Management

500 kilometres from land in the treacherous seas of the Great Australian Bight, Bonnie Hancock is a 32-year-old former professional ironwoman who paddled around Australia on a surf ski. The 12,700km journey took Bonnie eight gruelling months, breaking the world record for the fastest and youngest to paddle around Australia. The trip became an adventure of a lifetime as Bonnie shared the water with sharks, crocodiles and navigated through the COVID-19 pandemic. A story of breaking stereotypes and believing in yourself when all the odds are stacked against you, Bonnie’s story is of a young woman who made the impossible, possible.

Growing up in the small NSW town of Sawtell, Bonnie was primarily a board paddler and swimmer and as a late bloomer on the ski, didn’t pick up a paddle until the age of 17. After a move to the Gold Coast as a teenager, Bonnie managed to grab a spot in the Nutri-Grain  Ironwoman Series and would complete 9 years on the professional circuit. After a two year layoff finishing her Bachelor of Nutrition and Dietetics Degree at Griffith University, Bonnie decided to focus on ski paddling, medalling at State and Australian Championships in her first year of doing so.

In 2020 Bonnie read a book about a previous circumnavigation of Australia by paddle. Two years later, she set off from Mermaid Beach on her surf ski and after 254 days, finished a clockwise loop around the country. Bonnie broke the previous World Record by over 2 months. She also holds the record for the furthest distance paddled in 24 hours (open ocean), completing 234 kms on her surf ski at Airlie Beach, just two weeks after returning from her paddle around Australia. Through determination, grit, and mental toughness, Bonnie conquered a number of amazing feats. Some included: being the first person to cross the Great Australian Bite through 6-meter swells 500 kilometres out to sea in all weather conditions, having to be hospitalised from malnutrition and dehydration but achieving a feat that will likely not be repeated for a long time, if ever.

Since the paddle, Bonnie has enjoyed sharing her story as a corporate speaker and her story carries many relevant themes such as resilience, working in a team, adapting to change, breaking gender stereotypes and stepping outside the comfort zone. Bonnie enjoys connecting with a range of different people, from elite athletes and business professionals to community sporting groups. When not in the ocean or holding a microphone, Bonnie coaches nippers at her local surf club at Mermaid Beach on the Gold Coast.

Keynote Titles

  • Learning from failure
  • Building a world beating team
  • Breaking boundaries
  • Adaptability


Bonnie’s incredible journey as a professional ironwoman who paddled around Australia on a surf ski reminded us that the impossible is possible. I highly recommend Bonnie as a speaker for any event seeking to motivate individuals to exceed their perceived limits. Her ability to engage and inspire the audience was remarkable. Bonnie’s genuine passion and unwavering belief in the human spirit created an empowering atmosphere

CEO | Tradie Ecosystem

Highly recommend Bonnie. Her life achievements so far are incredible and this allows her to be able to motivate and inspire others in all facets of their personal and professional lives.

COO | Geodis Wilson Australia

I am delighted to recommend Bonnie Hancock as a keynote speaker for any event or conference seeking an inspiring, engaging and captivating speaker. Bonnie’s story is nothing short of remarkable and her determination to succeed in the face of adversity is truly inspiring. Bonnie’s presentation was not only inspiring, but also practical as she shared valuable insights on how to develop resilience, overcome obstacles and work collaboratively with others.

Binnacle Training


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