Paddon wins popular enduro series round

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Dunedin mountain biker Jake Paddon has raced his way into first place in the second round of the Dunedin Enduro Series. Round two of the three-round series was held on three courses on Signal Hill on Sunday. Paddon (20) had an overall time of 13min 15sec — 19sec ahead of secondplaced Jeremy Forlong, also of Dunedin. Ethan Glover, of Dunedin, rounded out the top three in 13min 39sec and Wanaka rider Melissa Newell was the fastest female in 18min 38sec. Mountain Biking Otago president Donovan Isted said there were 75 riders in total, the most in the history of the series. ‘‘It’s a huge amount of riders. We were getting around 30 for most rounds [last year].’’ Fifty-eight riders competed in the first round, held on the Pineapple and Redwood tracks in September. Isted put the increase in riders down to a surge in popularity. ‘‘I think it’s just the whole enduro form has really taken off and it’s becoming the most popular form of mountain biking at the moment.’’ Riders used the club’s recently renovated track, The Big Easy, to get to the top of Signal Hill before racing down. ‘‘We pretty much used just about every course that was on the hill.’’ Isted said the event was more clubfocused last year and was started ‘‘just to try and get people out on their bikes’’. ‘‘Mountain Biking Otago is really focused on getting the little events up and running.’’
The series was a good lead-up to the Three Peaks Enduro and attracted riders from Christchurch, Southland and Central Otago, he said.
The final round will be at Mt Cargill on November 19.