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A successful season for New Zealand’s Jack Bauer only got better at the Tour of Southland today, with the rider holding on to his overall lead at the Crown Range hilltop finish. Not known for his climbing prowess, maintaining a 25 second lead over Bissell Pro Cycling duo Peter Latham and Jeremy Vennell left Bauer elated.
It wasn’t the only good news for Bauer either, with the rider confirming he has just secured his first professional contract in Europe – although he’s sketchy about the details at this point. Bauer will join British-registered squad Endura, managed by Mark Young.
“I have signed with Endura continental team based in England,” confirmed Bauer. “Apparently they have a good roster. As I said I’ve only just signed so I know very little about them apart from how much they are paying me and when I start. That’s all I need to know.”
The 24 year-old rider has enjoyed a successful block of racing on home shores after returning from a stint in Belgium earlier this year. He finished second at New Zealand’s club championships last month and has already one a stage of the Tour of Southland.
Bauer has one success on the Belgium kermesse circuit this year when he won in Knesselare. He has also enjoyed a host of top five finishes in Oedelem, Hooglede, Deerlijk-Belgiek and Heist-Goor.
Vennell sits 27 seconds behind Bauer with three stages remaining in New Zealand’s biggest tour. Heath Blackgrove (Zookeepers - Cycle Surgery) is 57 seconds behind while Olympian Marc Ryan (Colourplus) dropped to 1:14 minutes after today’s stage.
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