Video & Event Recap: Sweetlines Sugar Showdown 2019

Jul 29, 2019
by Kat Sweet  
Views: 2,575    Faves: 9    Comments: 4

Words by Annie Henmi

In its eighth year, the Sugar Showdown, presented by Sisters in Action Sports, is a three day event hosted at Duthie Hill Park in Issaquah, Washington, where women of all ages (6 and up) come to learn how to progress their riding skills from cornering to drops to jumps to learning to crash safely.

Kat Sweet of Sweetlines is the creator and organizer of the Sugar Showdown. Sweet, being a former pro downhill racer, now competes as a pro jump competitor. Additionally, she has an extensive resume of hosting mountain bike summer camps and coaching all ages.

Photo by Russ Henmi
Kat Sweet clearing the final jump on Flying Squirrel. Photo: Russ Henmi

Today, Sweet also coaches two developmental youth mountain bike racing teams: Sweetlines Junior Racing and Sweetlines Gravity Team. Kat is currently racing downhill this season in CAT 1.

Photo by Russ Henmi
Kat Sweet and the Sweetlines Junior Race Team watching the novice and amateur runs. Photo: Russ Henmi

The first day of the Sugar Showdown is a meet and greet, followed by a trivia night presented by Clif Bar. Additionally, participants with the coaches and have an optional crash course. This includes learning the North Shore Dismount and how to tuck and roll safely, both with and without the bike. Kat Sweet brought out a crash pad to practice the techniques.

Photo by Shanna Powell
Kat Sweet teaching the author how to tuck and roll with the bike. Photo: Shanna Powell

The second day is the skills clinic, Kat Sweet and her professional coaches provide the coaching and help each participant hone their skills. Each group of 6-8 ladies is broken down by their skill level (novice and amateur) and brought together to rotate through the coaches.

Photo by Russ Henmi
Participant in the amateur group rolling the first drop in Voodoo Child. Photo: Russ Henmi

The third day is the competition: every participant can compete in a no-pressure event where you are grouped by novice, amateur, semi-pro, and pro. The novice and amateur categories run two competition laps on Voodoo Child, then the competitors ran a lady train through Voodoo Child, from the youngest to the oldest of the competitors.

Photo by Russ Henmi
Leah McCartney launching the middle drop on Voodoo Child. Photo: Russ Henmi

Photo by Russ Henmi
MsFits rider, Thea Ruckhaus hitting the wall ride on Voodoo Child. Photo: Russ Henmi

Photo by Russ Henmi
Stace Cooper on her winning run on Voodoo Child. Photo: Russ Henmi

After the novice and amateur competition runs, Kat leads a lady train of all the novice and amateur competitors down an easy pace lap on Voodoo Child to get some lunch before watching the pros and semi-pros. During the lunch time, the youngest ones run their competition on the Luna Tables.

The semi-pros took their competition to the Flying Squirrel run. Here they hit the upper section gap jumps and throwing some style in.

Photo by Russ Henmi
Laura Delong launching a jump in the semi-pro competition. Photo: Russ Henmi

Photo by Russ Henmi
Jetta Porter, aka “Jetta Shredda,” showing everyone solid air time. Photo: Russ Henmi

For this year, the Sugar Showdown pro competition was an FMB Bronze Event and part of the women’s slopestyle tour. The pros finish up the competition on lower Flying Squirrel, showing their skills.
The pro competition is also the first stop on the Women’s Slopestyle Tour along with Little Big in Truckee, CA and the Big White Invitational in Kelwona, BC.

The top five finishers from the pro competition:
1. Stephanie Nychka, Canada
2. Ming Goetz, USA
3. Julia Lofqvist Traum, USA
4. Chelsea Kimball, USA
5. Kialani Hines, USA

For the complete list of the competition results, click here.

Photo by Russ Henmi
Ming Goetz with a clap heard through the forest. Photo: Annie Henmi

Photo by Russ Henmi
Stephanie Nychka with the winning run and a backflip. Photo: Russ Henmi

Photo by Russ Henmi
Julia Lofqvist Traum’s tuck no hander. Photo: Russ Henmi.

Photo by Russ Henmi
Lauren Heitzman flying high. Photo: Annie Henmi

Photo by Russ Henmi
Amy Shenton with a solid whip. Photo: Russ Henmi

Photo by Russ Henmi
Cortney Knudson, Organizer of The Little Big, with a one hander. Photo: Russ Henmi


  • + 2
 Here are some more pictures I snagged of your keen for a look!
  • + 3
 Yeah Kat! Keep on shredding!!!
  • + 3
 So much stoke. Well done Kat & all lady shredders!
  • + 2
 Right on!

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