Through sweat and dust, two Kiwis have taken the win at the first Crankworx event of 2020, the Giant Toa Enduro.
The event took place yesterday with more than 300 riders taking on the trails.
One of the winners on the day was Eddie Masters, who only just came back from injury in the past two off-seasons.
The 30-year-old's season ended early last year after a crash at the Enduro World Series in Northstar.
Masters said he's only been back for three weeks, so he rode into today without any expectations.
"I was just trying to keep up with the locals really. But I've ridden here a few times, so I kind of knew the stages. And it's really nice to race here when it's not wet. Last two years it's been super wet. So that was mint."
Rotorua local Cole Lucas came in hot to secure second place on the podium.
"It was pretty hot out there and it felt like we just didn't stop all day. I had some good stages and just one crash, so I can't really be mad at that."
Fresh home from an overseas team camp with his new crew Ibis Enduro Team, Lucas was looking forward to putting his feet up for the next few days.
"This was my only [Crankworx] event. I'll just be chilling out for the rest of the week. I'm looking forward to heading along and watching the other events. It's nice having it so close to home when we travel so much throughout the year."
During the course of the day, racers rode more than 30km and climb more than 1200m over a number of stages.
"I'm not going to lie, it was a lot hotter than we expected," race director Craig Murray said.
The temperature was sitting in the late-20's yesterday for the event.
"We wanted to send the riders into our native forest because there's some great technical trails and they've got big roots, cool little chutes, and it's a bit different than some of the enduro races that we've had over the past season," Murray said.
Giant Toa Enduro: top three placings
1. Edward Master NZL 18:52.71 / Rae Morrison NZL 22:42.16
2. Cole Lucas NZL 18:58.62 / Kate Weatherly NZL 23:53.37
3. Matt Walker NZL 19:11.52 / Georgia Astle CAN 24:04.51