5 Things We Learned from the Women's Slopestyle Session at Joyride

Aug 3, 2023 at 9:49
by Christina Chappetta  

1. The riders need bigger courses and features to practice on.

The reality with showing up to a Diamond level slopestyle course or event is that as a rider you need to have practiced on something like this before to reach full potential. These courses and features aren't easy to come by, and likely require the riders to travel far distances in hopes of getting a chance to practice on something of this caliber. Maybe they know another rider who is lucky enough to have the space and features in their yard to visit but just imagine how hard that would be and the logistics involved in getting there.

bigquotesHaving access to ride the bronze track at Big White before and then also the speed and style made it significantly easier to get to a mental place to hit the line, so even if it's not like absolute huge jumps to practice on, just having access to big and technical courses and more support going to those is rad.Kaia Jensen

2. If you build it, they will come. Hell, even if you just invite them, they will come!

From what I gather, most of these riders just want to be included. With inclusivity comes progression. By getting the opportunity to ride on a course like Joyride, in events like Speed and Style, or even dig at Red Bull Formation, these riders are gaining valuable experience and time in their arena. They then have first-hand knowledge of what it feels like to hit a jump that big or tall or long and can piece it together and draw on that in the future. Another example is digging in the desert; until you've gotten your hands dirty and filled sandbags you really have no idea what it takes to create something out of nothing. The Sunday Session was to open to many riders and the turnout was amazing to see. While we didn't see all of the heaviest hitting riders out there, the ones that did show up made the most of their time.

bigquotesI think that more opportunities equals more limits pushed and more limits pushed equals faster progression.Blake Hansen

3. Maybe we aren't ready for women to compete in Red Bull Joyride...but maybe we are.

Actually, it's not up to us to decide that. It's up to the women to decide when they are ready to ride in a level of competition such as Joyride, and I can tell you, some of them really really want that! After witnessing them piece together the course so quickly, it's no surprise they want a crack at the whole thing and to lay down their best runs. While some riders out on Sunday admit it's not their prerogative to compete in Diamond or even Gold-level slopestyle events, the fact that they showed up to cheer on and ride with the other women shows the level of support within this discipline. A lot can happen in one year, so I hope to see this fire spark some inspiration in others to practice the tricks and build big lips. Joyride is coming!

bigquotesI think with a few more sessions on the course we could totally get some T to B's with some tricks thrown in the mix. I would love to compete in an event like Joyride some day.Shealen Reno

Patricia Druwen with a 360 off the drop in.

4. Jam sessions benefit everyone.

The riders had about two hours to session the Joyride course Sunday morning after the dust settled after a long 10 days of Crankworx competition. In that time they ticked off loads of features - some of them put together nearly top-to-bottom runs, tricking along the way. Some of the builders of the course, Justin Wyper and Phil McLean, helped with judging speed in the beginning, but it took no time at all for Shealen Reno to drop in and pick that course apart, inspiring those around her to do the same. The smiles were countless and the stoke was high This is the vibe I always remember from a sick session and to see the riders talk speed, run-ins, and egging each other on was a testament to how productive one session at the jumps is.

The same could be said for the men that competed on Saturday. They thrive on each other's energy and creativity. What I would love to see are more chances for the women to take part in practice sessions throughout the week leading up to Red Bull Joyride. The women have proven that they can hang and honestly, maybe they'll bring a little fun and lightheartedness to this competition while inspiring the next generation to follow their own dreams.

Shealen Reno Boosting with style and grace while Lucy "Luce Operation" Van Eestern chucks a sui.

5. We've actually been here before...

Let's be honest...this is not the first time these women have gone huge. In the past years we've seen incredible achievements by loads of riders from invites to Audi Nines, Red Bull Hardline, Formation, Fest Series, District Ride and many more.

As a matter of fact, let's take a quick trip down memory lane to Crankworx 2007, and specifically the WomenzWorx Gala Competition that saw more than 40 women compete in a series of freeride events throughout Whistler Bike Park, including Crabapple hits and the slopestyle course. The winners back then were Claire Buchar in pro and Casey Brown in amateur, and both of them still work darn hard to keep the progression going while inspiring others. Just imagine WHAT IF we had kept that momentum going? That was 16 years ago... Where did it slow down and why? Seeing the progress we made in two hours on the Joyride course is a testament to what women can do in a short amount of time if given the opportunity.

With that said, let's not slow down again. Let's go all gas and no brakes.

Riders left to right : Kaia Jensen, Natasha Bradley, Shealen Reno, Kathi Kuypers, Peter Kaiser

Photos: Alexa Christensen

Author Info:
christinachappetta avatar

Member since Jul 6, 2012
26 articles

  • 35 0
 The time is already now for a women's joyride
  • 13 0
 I think people need to remember back in the day crankworx pros didn’t even trick every feature, so I say give the girls a chance. And when I say a chance, I mean the girls have their own comp. Men’s slopestyle and then women’s slopestyle. Extend the event to 1 more day.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but I’m quite sure the “trick every feature because bmx riders like Ryan Nyquist and Daniel Dhars were tricking every feature at x games and dew tour. So it became this standard that riders needed to abide by. So it snowballed to slopestyle.
  • 3 0
 I was at a couple early joyrides. The course wasn’t even near the scale of todays. People were riding off logs and doing whips x ups and the occasional bar spin. The fact that these women are sending these courses today is kinda nuts. Most of us would break our face trying to hit some of these.

Women’s snowboarding and skiing is a great example of where things can go if you just let them have their timeline to compete. There are girls doing batshit insane stuff in snowboard slope and pipe these days, like really high consequence rotational madness on huge senders.
  • 1 1
 There should be 1 or 2 features on the course that are only judged on style, no rotations, limbs cant leave the bike, whips and tables etc allowed, but like who has the most sense of style without throwing a cork 7 barspin invert alien garbage scooping arms oppo tail whip to manual landing...
  • 11 0
 Why didnt we see more content of this? Id love a full recap video or something.
  • 3 0
 My WAG: they intentionally kept it low-key and low-stress.
  • 1 0
 not one full video, but if you check out the riders on instagram, there is a lot of content on their pages.
  • 1 0
 @IanJF: Fair enough, if anyone watches me ride I immediately tumble into the reeds.
  • 1 0
 @chaychers: Will do thanks
  • 5 0
 I wish they announced that this was going to happen. What about video and photos? I woulda 100% gone and watched.
Theres so many women killing it these days, its time to support them and get the events going.
  • 5 1
 This shouldn't even be a question. we should have a women's category for crankworx Slopestyle. it should have happened this year.
  • 5 0
 why not let women design the course they ride on?
  • 1 0
 Point 5 should be in first. Pioneers were getting there the level was here, just too early.
I'm 30 y/o today. Did all my teenage years and 20's dirt jumping hoping people would be more open about women on dirt jump bikes...

Heck a video I did got on PB homepage, look at the comment section... bunch of sexists keyboard warrior, they also exist on the field and don't hold their words. www.pinkbike.com/news/lea-weill-2012.html

I'm just so glad nowdays that people only go "yay" for Patricia and co. Goddamnit I've heard so many sexist stuff 15 years ago. Time for this to stop. Time now for the new generation to shine without being ashamed of being a woman on a bike.
  • 1 0
 Never in my best form, would I hit those jumps. I sadly missed the session as I did not know it was happening while I was in Whistler. Rad to see some of the highlights tho, impressive, great job ladies.
  • 2 0
 One more thing... These ladies are way more bad ass than I am... Seeing the progression is awesome! Keep it going!
  • 3 0
 #4 absolutely.
  • 1 1
What do i really think, muh fuhs?!?!?!

  • 1 0
 Love this kind of content! Thanks, Christina!
  • 1 0
 Yoooo Tash!!!!

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