Qualifying Photo Epic: Ready to Rock - Windrock Tennessee National 2021

Mar 13, 2021
by Dave Trumpore  



Where there's a will there's a way and despite the turmoil all around the world, it's nice to see a glimmer of normalcy now and then. For all those race fans out there, that sense of normalcy can be seen once again as the US National series kicks off its three-race series with round one at the infamous Windrock Bike Park. With over 600+ racers in attendance for the DH and Enduro events, it is without a doubt one of the largest domestic racing events we have seen for gravity disciplines here on home soil in some time. Proof that racing is alive and well even if events have been cancelled left and right and many racers forced to sit nearly a year out. It feels a bit weird to go racing again, but at the same time, it's providing a bit of hope that slowly and surely things just might get back to some semblance of normal in the coming months.

With the likes of Aaron Gwin, Dakotah Norton, Luca Shaw, Neko Mulally, and Charlie Harrison on the Men's side and in the Women's, Kailey Skelton, Frida Ronning, Caroline Washam, and Mazie Hayden, there is certainly no shortage of talent. The best of the best US downhill racers are here in Windrock and looking to make their mark on 2021. There's even a rumor that 2x EWS Champ Richie Rude has a dual crown on his bike and will be racing DH for the first time in what must be a few years.

Practice and qualifying went off with dry conditions (for the first five riders on track) but with rain rolling in at the end of the day and overnight it will surely be a roll of the dice from now on.

Qualifying Results:

Elite Women:

1st: Kaily Skelton - 2:51.58
2nd: Frida Ronning - 2:56.12
3rd: Caroline Washam - 3:04.27

Elite Men:

1st: Luca Shaw - 2:20.32
2nd: Dakotah Norton - 2:21.28
3rd: Charlie Harrison - 2:21.35



Luca Shaw
Luca Shaw

Dakotah Norton with the speed
Dakotah Norton with the speed

and the style
and the style

Charles Frydendal
Charles Frydendal

Richie Rude
Richie Rude

The infamous rock garden
The infamous rock garden

Out of the gate and straight into it
Out of the gate and straight into it

The new rock section right out of the start gate
The new rock section right out of the start gate

Kailey Skelton
Kailey Skelton

The KHS crew on a fast training Session
The KHS crew on a fast training Session

The bridge huck to boulder field is once again in the track
The bridge huck to boulder field is once again in the track

Austin Dooley
Austin Dooley

Caroline Washam
Caroline Washam

2nd in quali for Frida Ronning
2nd in quali for Frida Ronning

Charlie Harrison
Charlie Harrison

Chris Grice
Chris Grice


Axel Bryan
Axel Bryan

austin Hackett-Klaube
Austin Hackett-Klaube

Mazie Hayden - 4th in qualifying
Mazie Hayden - 4th in qualifying

There will a whole mud on race day
There will a whole lot of mud on race day

Dakotah Norton
Dakotah Norton

Richie Rude giving DH a try
Richie Rude giving DH a try

Tyler Ervin

Its been dry here... but will it last
Its been dry here... but will it last?

Tyler Maples
Tyler Maples

Rafael Ferreira

Dawson Church
Dawson Church

Nik Nestoroff
Nik Nestoroff

Caroline Washam
Caroline Washam

Mason DeKeyrel
Mason DeKeyrel

Aaron Gwin
Aaron Gwin

Aaron Gwin
Aaron Gwin


Neko Mulally
Neko Mulally

Zoe Ray Wood
Zoë Ray Wood

Ella Erickson
Ella Erickson


Kaira Jenson
Kaia Jensen


Ronnie Vance
Ronnie Vance

Dante Silva
Dante Silva

Dante Silva
Dante Silva

Conrad Haener Piedra
Conrad Haehner Piedra

It was dry to start qualifying but the only lasted for the first 5 or so riders
It was dry to start qualifying, but this only lasted for the first five or so riders

The dust is looking a bit wet heading into the weekend
The dust is looking a bit wet heading into the weekend



60 Comments

  • 116 2
 Credit to Dave, these photos are incredible!!!
  • 18 0
 THAT SCRUB - POY 2021
  • 10 0
 Damn, it’s nice to see some rad DH shots. Gets the people going.
  • 6 0
 @RedBurn: Seriously. Norton scrub: insane.
  • 1 0
 @BiNARYBiKE: i meant Silva at thé end
  • 32 0
 Thank you to the men and women who built and maintain windrock and the friendly folks who work there. It’s cool to see a venue grow into itself and create its own scene and vibe. If you ever rode the rock you already know.
  • 21 1
 Richie Rude bike check please ! ! ! ! Also Luca Shaw bike check !
  • 4 0
 Big news that Richie is having a go at DH. Stoked to see how he does on that Yeti 165
  • 1 0
 @tom666: He didn't ride due to the mud, he decided to focus on practice for the enduro and racing enduro tomorrow.
  • 1 0
 wondering if Gwin's Intense became a production bike someday...
  • 10 1
 Hey @davetrumpore lovely photos as always! I'm 100% certain, that photo of Kaia Jensen is actually Chelsea Kimball.
  • 14 2
 You are probably 100% correct... Just checked my start list and see two women were given the #2 plate and looks like I got them confused. I'll ask editors to change it
  • 2 0
 @davetrumpore: Well, the pics are still extremely excellent, regardless!
  • 2 0
 Yeah, there duplicate # plates on the mountain in different classes. Mine was one of them. #287 for me and also a grom. I have not looked to see if said grom smoked me. Beer

But @davetrumpore did not confuse me for a good photo subject despite the embarrassing old neon kit worn as tribute to Gwin's 1st race at the Rock.
  • 8 1
 Gwin off Alpinestars? New Thor bike line coming out? Did I miss something.
Great shots!!
  • 1 0
 I think both brands are owned by Parts Unlimited.
  • 1 0
 @Reno233: Alpinestars is privately owned
  • 1 0
 Nice catch.
  • 4 0
 How will rude do? Interesting... also great shot of gwin looking focussed and committed in that turn with bars 90 degrees to the ground. Will there be any video highlights? Bring on the DH season!
  • 4 0
 Lot's of the new 100% Aircraft helmets out in the wild....but the media is silent. Long term review to drop tomorrow?
  • 7 3
 Richie Rude on the SB150 lunch ride DH edition ?
  • 10 0
 sb165
  • 5 1
 Weres the rest of the results
  • 4 0
 Article before this one.
  • 5 1
 Great shots! Track look brutal!
  • 4 1
 FFS. Quit blue ballin' us would ya! Give us a juicy close-up of the high pivot session!!!
  • 2 0
 Agree, we need to see it! Does it come in rootbeer? Looks flexy etc
  • 1 0
 Finals conditions will be a repeat of 2018 where Vergier took the win. Have a feeling one of the hometown men will take it, really curious to see how Frida v. Skelton plays out too.
  • 1 0
 There are some top WC riders and some up coming riders at this race, it will be interesting to see who is in the top 10 st the end of the day. Kaily Skelton is on a mission, she is in the Zone!
  • 5 2
 The KHS looks like a Session to me.
  • 3 0
 Cause it is
  • 1 0
 Looks like, or IS
  • 3 0
 wow, very rare I look at all the pics. SE going off!
  • 3 0
 awesome shots @davetrumpore, every pic is telling a story!!
  • 1 0
 Thank you Dave ! These photos are stunning! The one of Frida Ronning is absolutely perfect......
(I cringe that she isn’t wearing gloves.)
  • 3 0
 These photos got me jazzed up for riding season!
  • 2 0
 We want to see a bike check on Richie Rude’s ride as well as we also want to know how he stacks up against the rest.
  • 3 0
 could gwin get any more pinned on that corner?
  • 3 1
 Si good to see awesome photos of awesome riders and racing AGAIN!
  • 3 1
 photography on point Dave!
  • 3 0
 #painrock
  • 1 0
 Love these photo articles. There's something so good about a still image. So sick, thanks Dave Trumpore
  • 1 0
 Bark busters on a DH bike? Interesting to know what brand on Mason DeKeyrel's bike.
  • 2 0
 windrock's like that....has some "needle threading" spots between trees...better bark buster than knucklebuster :-)
  • 3 1
 Amazing pictures!
  • 2 0
 sick pictures!
  • 1 0
 interesting Blackbox logos on charlies boxxer
  • 3 0
 I was trying to figure out if it looked like 38mm stanchions.
  • 1 0
 @Davidm816: i am thinking about the same but the rest looks to similar to the standard boxxer tbh
  • 1 0
 @Davidm816: You can eye ball 3mm? Must have eaten your carrots this morning!
  • 1 0
 @TCarl11: “trying”. But honestly the 35mm boxxer looks so out of place compared to the 40. I think if you saw a boxxer 38 in person I think you would notice right away.
  • 1 0
 Richie Rude was on a Yeti, do they have a dh bike in the works?
  • 2 0
 Just a 165 with a dual crown
  • 3 0
 It's most probably just the SB 165 with a dual crown fitted. Reed Boggs for exaple rides a similar setup as a freeride rig.
  • 1 0
 Pictures from this weekend are straight fire
  • 1 0
 Where's Vlad sherrybule
  • 1 1
 So, Shaw won

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