International field enjoys enduro event

Downhill bikers from Australia and France were some of the 60-strong group of racers, which included many Queenstowners, in the Torpedo 7 Coronet Enduro on Saturday.

Enduro racing is a relatively new style of mountain biking and comprises race stages which are timed.

The Coronet race involved four stages: the old downhill trail on Coronet Peak, the Rude Rock and Skippers tracks, and a newly created trail down the front face of Coronet Peak, below the road, known as Deer Lane.

Some course taping problems in the first stage caused a missed turn for a few racers.

The racers were released from the starting line every 30 seconds for each stage.

Some of the faster racers requested larger gaps so as not to catch the rider in front and be slowed while passing.

Nelson rider Wyn Masters was consistent, with a fifth, two firsts and a third.

His winning time of 20min 54sec was

11sec faster than second-placed Justin Leov, of Christchurch. Joseph Nation, also of Christchurch, was third.

Queenstown's Harriet Latchem achieved two firsts, a second and a third across the four stages to finish just over a minute ahead of Anja McDonald, of Dunedin.

Erin Greene, of Wanaka, finished 5sec later in third.

The next enduro racing event is to be held as part of the Queenstown Bike Festival, in April.