Race Report: Cody Kelley & Essence Jasperse Take Series Final at Brian Head Big Mountain Enduro

Sep 20, 2021
by BigMtn Enduro  

Words and Photos by Eddie Clark

The Yeti Cycles Big Mountain Enduro Series presented by Maxxis Tires wrapped up the season with the final stop at Brain Head, Utah. New to the sereis, Brian Head proved worthy for a series final with long rewarding backcountry stages and rocky technically challenging terrain accessed via the lift at the resort itself. For the first day of racing, weather was challenging as partly sunny skies gave way to a cold driving rain. As the day progressed conditions worsened and the third stage was postponed to the following day due to safety concerns. On Sunday, sunny skies and a chilly wind prevailed which made for near perfect conditions for racers to tackle the four rocky technical stages kept racers to finish the season.

Without a doubt, it was certainly the best Big Mountain Enduro series to date. Every stop presented racers with diverse tracks that happened to be some of the most challenging ever seen in the series, and three new venues meant all new racing for the best enduro racers in the country. A hearty thanks goes out to all the racers, sponsors and staff who helped make this series so great!

Brilliant sunshine for Jake Ingram on stage one before the weather moved in.

Lia Westermann claimed fourth for the weekend and third for the series overall.
Dani Johnson finished just off the podium with a sixth place for the weekend.

The wild sheep of Brian Head were everywhere on stage 2 if you stopped to look.

Scott Conutryman took the win on stage 1, second on stage 2, and a fifth for the weekend.

Travis Claypool ripping stage 2 for a 7th on the weekend.

Cody Kelley in the gold room on stage 2.

Warren Kniss sending it on stage 2 to finish the weekend with a solid third place and a third for the series overall too.

Porsha Murdock rallying on stage 2 as the rain starts to fall.

Essence Jaspers charging through the rain to claim the win on stage 2.

Jacob Snow drenched, freezing and enjoying some type 2 fun.
Hillary Sotor trying to stay warm as the rain gets more intense.


There were some impressive view to be seen from the top of stage 2... on a clear day.

After the long wet pedal transfer from stage 2 back to the base area, the tough decision was made to postpone stage 3 for the second day of racing.
Dirty bikes getting a cleaning.

Page Dehart prevailed in the top step for the U21 women on the weekend and series.
Ariana Soto riding to second place for the U21 women on the weekend and series.

Andrew Pearson claiming the win for the weekend and overall series in the Expert class.

Porsha Murdock putting the power down to take second on the weekend and for the series overall.
Stefanie McDaniel kept it consistent and fast to claim third on the weekend and for the series overall.

Essence Jasperse brought the speed to take the overall win for the Pro Women on the weekend.

Shane Leslie riding to a fourth in the Pro Men for the last stop of the series.

Jake Keller took the win for the weekend and the series for the U21 men.

The steep rocky drops of stage 5.
Duncan Nason on the steeps of stage 5.

Jake Ingram with color and speed on stage 5.

A busted derailleur on stage 2 left Quinn Reece out of the race, but he channeled the spirit of enduro to go ahead and race the 4 stages of day 2 despite a dnf for the weekend.
First BME race back for new Mama, Rachel Straight, and a good one it was with a 5th for the weekend in the Pro Women.

Really great seeing former series winner Evan Geankoplis back up to speed and finishing the weekend with a solid second place.

An excellent season in all regards for Cody Kelley with a National Championship win, a win for the sereis final and a 2nd season overall to former teammate Richie Rude.

Pro Womens podium for the series final.
Pro Mens podium for the series final.

Brian Head results here.

BME Series results here.


35 Comments

  • 11 0
 Definitely not Jake Ingram in the Go Green. That's are boy Colton Peterson!
  • 2 0
 Yep, thinking one and typing the other, def need a second set of eyes to review before posting these!
  • 11 0
 Why is Cody not racing EWS this year?
  • 1 0
 Specialized has cut their U.S. EWS support. Focusing more on national races instead.
  • 6 0
 Shouldnt missing races count as a zero and not a scratch? Feels wrong that Cody can race every event and still come second to Richie who skipped 2 rounds
  • 5 1
 We plan to go back to 4 of 5 rounds next year. Coming off last year's adjustments with COVID and uncertainties in the air, we made a decision to do 3 of 5 this year in an effort to make the series more accessible to all racers.
  • 1 0
 @BigMtnEnduro: Appreciate the explanation!
  • 3 0
 Shout out to these warriors racing at 11,000' in the wind and rain, and some of the gnarliest resort trails. Additional shout out to Shimano, there providing race support, who helped me out with a broken pedal!
  • 1 0
 That transfer to 2 was brutal on that ridge. Couldn't feel thumbs by the time I was racing 2.
  • 3 0
 Jake Keller took the win this weekend but Jack Brown took the series over all for u21
  • 1 0
 Thanks for noting that.
  • 3 0
 i got some sick shots of some of them from the BME Durango! sometimes hard to get them they are going so damn fast
  • 5 0
 Brain Head!
  • 8 0
 The pictures dont show how gnarly that park is
  • 3 0
 My friend Big Dave raced there.
  • 3 0
 Big Wave Dave?
  • 2 0
 @trevor201: He's no myth, just lives in the flying Js on weekdays
  • 1 0
 @Leonlonson: I once heard he seduced a lady by merely entering a party to the chant of big wave Dave
  • 1 0
 @camjoye191: I heard he necked himself on a jump in San Diego. He lived to tell the tale and ended up getting a ticket to hardline. He decided not to go to save everyone else the embarrassment. At least, that’s what legend says
  • 1 0
 @camjoye191: yes, ive heard that too. i believe they found the story inscribed on the walls of the great pyramid of giza?
  • 2 0
 I LOVE BIG DAVE
  • 2 0
 Scott Countryman is definitely a Co-nuty-man on a bike!
  • 1 0
 Awesome job Essence, Congrats !
  • 1 0
 Brian for the win ......its by a Head!!
  • 1 1
 Such a good series. With the exception of Winter Park, gnarly DH tracks throughout
  • 2 0
 None of these guys made the podium at big sky last year, Seems Enduro is dying.
  • 1 0
 Glad to see Cody doing well, he's a good dude
  • 1 0
 Surprising number of half shells...
  • 2 0
 Day 1 was a big pedal day in the backcountry on tamer trails, one of them being ~18-20 minutes. Also a pretty steep 900' vert HAB. Day 2 was in the park, almost everyone in full-face.
  • 1 0
 @pb-kg: Aha - good intel.
  • 1 0
 Go Cody
  • 1 0
 a lot of 38´s around
  • 2 0
 Cause 'Murica. Everything is bigger...
  • 1 1
 Most of the those pictures don’t match up with the descriptions lol

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