Race Report: Perfect Conditions for the Downhill Southeast Series at Windrock

Apr 2, 2019
by Burke Saunders  


Just a few weeks after kicking off the North American DH race season at The Tennessee National for the first stop of the ProGRT Series, the Downhill Southeast Series is back for its 4th year and its first stop at Windrock. Not only were riders treated to a totally different track, on Reach Around, with primed berms and more turns than you can count but polar opposite conditions than the weeks prior. Instead of axle deep ruts and peanut butter mud it was 80 degree's, sunny skies and fast dry conditions.

One of the coolest things about being at Windrock for races is that even if it's a local race, it's home to a slew of international racers. Riding the same track as some of the pros you watch race around the world in a low key setting is a pretty good example of how to progress your skills.


The start was a fresh cut section that wasted no time dropping you into the fast section, of the top section. Caroline Washam dropping in.

Dakota going high into the first switchback of many.


Rocks were getting slick with all the dust


Walker Shaw rollin' around in the dust.

Dakota and Neko haulin' the mail

Neko winding through Reach Around.

With three shuttles running there was no shortage of practice laps.

The GROM race on Saturday was awesome. Tons of people came from practice right over to the finish of the green trail to cheer on riders.

Young Talent

Luca & Jolanda talking lines

There's more than one way to skin a cat...

Neko taking the committing skip-the-corner rock line

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Seth Hansen hitting the inside line

Party laps for practice

The track played favorably to those who were comfortable cornering

Ben Calhoun getting back in the mix

Early spring at Windrock makes for some awesome visibility

Logan Mulally cornering through the rocks

Perspective to try to do the track some justice...


Rain on Saturday night tamped down the dust and made for some mildly slick morning practice



Local ripper Chris Grice laying it over in the raw coal turns on Reach Around

Jolanda Neff making her downhill debut

Watching from the shuttle going up as racers come down

One of the final drops with options

Bergen Khare making shapes


That drop goes right into this step up. Reckon it's 'bout forty some-odd feet...

Costa Rica's Conrad Haehner butterin' up the final few features of the track

Norton dropping into the Red Bull Ravine

Shaving precious time on the step up. Dakota Norton

Susan Curtain sending the Ravine on her way to second place Open Women.

Luca scrubbin' the step up

Colin Mulally taking his first ever win.

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Logan Mulally throwing down the back flip on his race run

Question is - did he also hit the committed rock corner in his race run?

Friends on and off the track

Single Crown Class
Amateur Ladies

Amateur Men
Junior Men 14 & under

Junior Men 18 & Under
Masters 40 & up

Good ole Tennessee white lighting for the winners

Open/Pro Women
Open/Pro Men




Big Thanks to everyone that made the event come together and everyone who raced. Until next time - cheers!


Mentions:
@Windrockbikepark
@Downhillsoutheast
@Burkelawrencephoto


25 Comments

  • 12 0
 Super excited my son made this article “young talent“...12 year old Walker Cottingham hitting WindRock big on his 24” Specialized Statis Grom...thx for including the Next Gen...you should see him hit the Redbull drop on that bike, it’s crazy ????
  • 10 0
 Luca and Jolanda... Only in my wildest dreams would I be talking DH line choices with my girlfriend
  • 11 1
 Luca is going to be sooo good now that Jolanda is showing him all the fast lines.
  • 21 14
 Jolanda 10 seconds off the pro men's win on a trail bike with eggbeaters. Goes to show, rider not the gear.
  • 38 0
 Very impressive, but check your math
  • 15 1
 1 minute 10 seconds*
  • 6 0
 Dakota Norton 2:47.362 Jolanda Neff 3:56.415
She beat 2nd place lady by 16sec though. Look out WC DH or the EWS after 2020 olympics maybe?
  • 4 0
 @j-t-g: Good catch! Haha
  • 4 1
 Those eggbeaters gotta be challenging to say the least for DH.
  • 2 0
 I’m honestly a bit confused by the se4 up front with the g5 in the back. She’s obviously a better rider than I, just curious the reasoning behind it.
  • 3 1
 @mtbmaniatv: Not if you stay clipped in...
  • 1 1
 @SonofBovril: too much wiggle. Nice to have it feel like a flat pedal and spread out the surface area.
  • 8 0
 Dakota Norton " Nice scrub Gwinn....hold my beer, watch this"
  • 5 0
 Probably done it holding his own beer...!
  • 2 0
 Dak Norton - state "SOMEWHERE".
And yeah, being that guy, Dak and Luca faffing around on their preview lap on Vital were 20 seconds faster than Jolanda in her race run so maybe don't start talking about her as the next Jill Kitner. Faster than me? For sure. World Tour fast? No, not yet.
  • 4 1
 Cecile Ravanel's DH dabble last year still saw her off the podium and I reckon she'd smoke Jolanda... That said, I suspect Jolanda is just doing it as a bit of cross training for her XC racing.
  • 6 1
 That picture of Luca and Jolanda is awesome. Only thing that ruins it for me is her shoes haha.
  • 3 0
 yes yes, I know it's crazy rainy all the time in the UK, but the western NC and Easter Tenn clay is way more gnarly when it's wet, so we are glad for a little dryness.
  • 3 0
 Whatever mud you want we have it here
  • 2 0
 "Logan Mulally throwing down the back flip on his race run" is that why he has an asterick next to his name in the race results? Just wondering?
  • 1 0
 Probably for rock * (star) status...

I was at the race and the announcer was joking that the back flip was good for a -20 second bonus...haha...so...yeah I am thinking that is why they put an * next to his name. Pretty rad to witness that in a race run...and still with a pretty smokin' fast time.
  • 3 1
 Just your typical XC track. Wink
  • 1 0
 ...and so many thought Jolanda winning was an April fools joke... she's no joke!!!
  • 1 0
 this post needs more Jolanda
  • 2 5
 #puntersgap

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