Video: The 'Queens of Gnar' at Audi Nines

Sep 20, 2021
by Alicia Leggett  

Words: Audi Nines

They came, they saw, they slayed. Audi Nines 2021 was proud to welcome a new group of riders into the family and to witness these women pushing mountain biking to new heights. From teenagers to veterans, the moment they rolled into the course, it was clear that Audi Nines is exactly where they belong.
This non-competitive environment brings together an incomparable crew of mountain bikers to ride their bikes and push each other. Liken it to watching the greatest soccer teams playing for fun on the street or great musicians jamming spontaneously together in a studio. This is Audi Nines. When the competitive element is removed, it allows space for magic to happen, and that's exactly what went down on every part of the course. From Freeride to Slopestyle, in only a few short days, these women not only raised the roof, they smashed through it, and they're not showing any signs of slowing down.

bigquotesProgression and evolution of a sport can be tricky concepts to grasp. Evolution from what, progression to where and compared to whom? However, without them, we would still be in the era of the wooden wheel.

The most relevant example of taking a sport to the next level, at this moment in time, is women's MTB slopestyle and freeride. These Queens of Gnar showed up at Audi Nines and embodied how passion, talent, skill, and just enough insanity can shatter everyone's expectations. The setup was filled with huge, technical, and high consequence features that intimidated many riders, including the most experienced, let alone those who had never dropped into these infamous lines.

To begin with, nobody quite knew what to expect. Progression, yes, but how much and in what setting? Would women ride the whole quarry or just a little part of it? Did they have the skills and the confidence to approach these big and technical features? These were questions uttered from lips. Take a moment to reflect on the fact that most have never had the opportunity to approach a setup of this scale, or to session and progress alongside the best riders in the world. Then they dropped in, and any preconceptions were left in the dust.

The amount of camaraderie, energy, determination, and utter willingness to get out of their comfort zones and face uncharted territory was staggering. Their actions truly embodied the word 'Gnar'. The debut of these riders at Audi Nines showcased the unstoppable, limitless force of women's Freeride and Slopestyle mountain biking that is currently rippling across the globe. This is just the beginning.
Action sports photographer & journalist Alba Pardo

Audi Nines is an intersection between athletic prowess and creative minds. 'Queens of Gnar' is led by women and collaborations with editor Anjuna Hartmann, colourist Matilda Schön, director Sophie Acworth, and music producer Something Something. From those in front of the camera to those behind the scenes, this video highlights the passion and skills of these women on a multitude of levels. So sit back, press play, and prepare to witness the start of a new era in mountain biking.


34 Comments

  • 65 3
 While like many of you I will show this to my daughters, equally important I will show it to my nephews who think they're better than girls.
  • 21 44
flag Juuhan (Sep 20, 2021 at 12:08) (Below Threshold)
 Well, in most cases they are on what comes to sports.
  • 29 9
 @Juuhan: I bet you're equally good at satisfying yourself, doh!

So here's the thing young obi wan: holding people down because of their sex, race, class, age, etc... will not keep them down forever.

These girls will kick you arse, so watch what you say or you'll be using your hands a lot more.
  • 11 7
 @nurseben: He wasn't holding anybody down or claiming to be better than anybody, he was just stating a fact.

@Juuhan: The truth isn't allowed if it isn't politically correct. Interesting example of modern censorship and the triumph of ideology over truth.
  • 7 9
 @nurseben: not sure where did you get an idea of holding anyone back. Girls, women, poc etc just don't need to be infantalized and boosted with claims, which have zero root in reality.


Being honest that women in average just cannot match with men in pretty much any sports in average is not pressing women down. It's just fact. Also this doesn't tell anything about the value of an individual or if women should ride or not. They as well as any individual in lucky countries are very free to do whatever they want including in sports.

As a side note I don't mind at all if a girl or women rides better than me. On contrary, it's just inspiring when someone rides well no matter what are her/his fashionable but irrelevant identity marker.
  • 8 4
 @Juuhan: Perhaps my choice of "better" is causing the knot in your knickers.

At the top of the pile do men - on average - have higher athletic ability? Based on pro sport quantifiable results, yes in most sport.

But in this case, my nephews think girls simply can't ride bikes like this. They're early teen and think they're the kings of the world. Showing them the video will prove they're wrong and there are girls who can ride far better than they can ride now and probably ever will. The message I want to send them is just because they see a girl on the bike they cannot assume they're better than her just because they are male.
  • 6 5
 @Juuhan:
your profile indicates female but your posts read otherwise. You seem to be against SJWs, systemic racism, gender bias and the general social movement toward fairness and equal opportunity... and now state you don't mind when girls ride better than you (oddly stated if indeed you are female). Just here to troll perhaps?
  • 2 0
 @pourquois-pas: @pourquois-pas: Good that you brought this up. It seems to be a pretty common misunderstanding by advocates of SJW/ intersectional feminism that If someone is not supporting their ideology it seems to mean that this someone is against equal rights for everyone and equal opportunities. That's off course absolutely not the case.

Any decent person supports equal rights & equal opportunities for each and every person and a fair society. Intersectional feminism is not needed to continue pursuing those targets. On contrary that ideology seems effectively be sending us back to the history by dividing people into groups and making them to fight each other.

I'm not aware of any evidence, which backs up the huge claims and "world explanation" of intersectional feminism.

This ideology has the readily available answer ( always the same one) to each question it's interested without any investigations ( seeing differences in outcomes is not actually a proof of anything than differences in outcomes). No engagement to a dialogue. Moral high ground and highly educated whites confessing their sins. This ideology doesn't believe that there is an objective truth and thus it's not interested even pursuing it (thus standpoint epistemology). The latter one is kind if interesting taking in account that the Ideology claims to have the explanation on how the societies work and humans in general.

So, I don't see how intersectional feminism is a good way forward and how it could make things better for the minorities or groups witch are lacking on the outcomes compared to certain reference group ( white males)

BTW, how does it matter to which gender I identify?
  • 1 0
 @pourquois-pas: Well, then it's certainly good to show them that some girls certainly are riding better than them.

There is almost always someone who can do a thing X better that you.

It's actually also within every subcategory ( like beginners, weekend warriors, semi-pros etc) where men are better in average. It's strange that we need to have even this discussion, it's just sports after all?
  • 10 1
 This is totally rad, loving that events like this are inviting women riders, and that there’s more coverage

If we want true equality we should be pushing for 50:50 split on Friday fails - come on ladies, you need to be doing far more dumb and/or dangerous stuff all the time everywhere. I recommend starting on the basics, like slowly rolling over drops. With a LOT of practice, one day you can be as dumb as men.
  • 6 1
 I think this is much about encouraging the right sort of people into the sport. On social media platforms I see a really even split in people of all genders willing to do batsh*t stupid things like slipping over on ice, failing to grasp even slightly the physics of a waterslide, shooting themselves in the leg, getting wildly drunk etc.

Mountain biking just needs to up its game and encourage underrepresented sections of the population on board. If you've got a female friend who does headstands in a skirt after 2 beers, this is the kind of person we need. Give her your old mountain bike!

All you need to do from that point is to sit her down in front of a video like this one and give her the only introductions any biker needs, i.e. "pull up, don't brake" and another convert will have been inducted into our merry tribe, ready for a starring role on Friday Fails.
  • 8 0
 Super stoked to see the progression, but it would be nice to have names on screen, since we don't all know these girls. Thanks!
  • 7 0
 Sooo good, these Ladies ! I am proud to say, that my wife is currently hitting bigger drops than myself and she does it purely intuitively with no technical flaws. Keep on rocking, girls !
  • 6 0
 These women are awesome!!
  • 3 0
 Man... that crash at 5:17, Caroline I think, so crazy! So much respect for these riders.
Also Robin's hand tremors, that adrenaline must be surging off the charts!
  • 5 1
 To me, gnar is super techy rocks, and roots, going fast over them. Not smooth jumps. But good job to the girls
  • 3 0
 Those ladies are hitting stuff I'm not sure I would have hit in my younger days... Awesome to see the progression!
  • 4 0
 fk yeah!
  • 3 0
 Most exciting thing in years
  • 1 0
 Seems like having jumps this perfect that next year they could open up as a bike park way longer than a week & open it up to more people?
  • 2 0
 It's so nice to see all these girls sending it to the moon!! It's the best progression of our sport..
  • 2 0
 Goomes for Prime Minister!
  • 2 0
 thats my shuttle driver, yes robin
  • 1 0
 Such an awesome video! the progression is inspiring!
  • 1 0
 Wo-many good things happening right now on things with wheels!
  • 1 0
 Bad ass! keep it up ladies!
  • 1 0
 Cool
  • 1 0
 Sooooo much YES!
  • 1 0
 Sehr gut!
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