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Jess Gardiner going to the wire | SPORT

A SMALL GLITCH in Australian off-road star Jess Gardiner’s glittering season means the Yamaha rider heads into the final round of the French Enduro Championship with just a single- point lead over her nearest rival Samantha Tichet (Yamaha).

Just seven days after surgery on a finger on her right hand, Gardiner rode to a clean sweep on the opening day of the series’ fourth round to extend her points tally to 140. However a heavy crash on day two meant she scored no points, allowing Tichet to run away with the victory and end the round on 139 points.

“The championship has now tightened up quite a lot, which sets the stage for a great battle between Samantha and me,” she said. “I’ll just have to focus on riding my own race and make sure I finish as strongly as possible in each test.”

The final round will kick off on 30 September in Auvergne in central France.

By Kel Buckley

Mastorgne Photography