Big Mountain Enduro Rd 2, Windrock Tennessee

Round 2 of the Big Mountain Enduro Series  went down at Windrock bike park in Tennessee this weekend! Crazy rain at the beginning of the week made for pretty muddy practice days which made learning the stages a little challenging. The sun did come out though and started to dry up the dirt a bit and the racing was full on from there. The two days of racing were a blast but also brutal on the body.
KHS Pro MTB Rider Bella Naughton on the trail at the BME round 2 in Windrock TN.
KHS Pro MTB Rider Bella Naughton on the trail at the BME round 2 in Windrock TN.
Day 1 was 3 stages with two being 8+ minutes of racing on rough, steep, rocky terrain that never let up the whole way down. The arm pump got me towards the end of stage 1 and it was a battle to try and tame it the best I could the rest of the weekend. Day 2 was another 4 stages of again, gnarly tracks that really tested fitness and skills. I
KHS Pro MTB rider Bella Naughton on the podium in 4th place for Pro Women's Enduro at the BME round 2 in Windrock TN.
KHS Pro MTB rider Bella Naughton on the podium in 4th place for Pro Women’s Enduro at the BME round 2 in Windrock TN.
was happy I was able to keep it together and get some good stage results and make up some time. I finished the weekend 4th overall in Pro Women!

KHS Pro MTB rider Jackson Wicklund...<br srcset=(more…)

BME Round 1, Mt. Nebo Arkansas

The first round of the Big Mountain Enduro Series took place in Mt. Nebo, Arkansas this weekend. It was a rainy week which made for some wild racing. I opted to ride my KHS 6600 paired with Kenda Pinners and Sr Suntour 36 durolux fork and triair2 shock. Day 1 was 4 stages with a combination of raw cut trails as well as pretty pedaly flow trails.

KHS Pro MTB rider Bella Naughton on the trail.
KHS Pro MTB rider Bella Naughton on the trail.

I had a decent stage 1, finishing 2nd but after the rain started coming down again on the transfer from stage 2 to 3 things got interesting and I unfortunately made a few mistakes on the rest of the stages. After day 1 I was sitting 4th but knew I could make up time on the last 3 stages on Sunday as they were more of the fun raw cut that I like. However, Mother Nature had other plans which cancelled the race day due to lightning and heavy rain and only times from day 1 were taken for the overall. I was bummed to not get a chance to pull back time on the rest of the stages but understand safety is a priority and BME had to make the tough call to not finish the day.

KHS Pro MTB rider Bella Naughton on the podium in fourth place at the BME round 1.
KHS Pro MTB rider Bella Naughton on the podium in fourth place at the BME round 1.

In the end I was on the podium with 4th in…
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Monster Pro Downhill Round 1 with McKenna Merten

I had a great time at Rock Creek for the first-ever Monster Pro Downhill Series race this past weekend. I drove into North Carolina on Thursday and headed up for a track walk while Jon at SR Suntour serviced my fork for a big weekend of racing. Scoped out all the different sections and lines and was so excited to get on track the next day.

KHS Pro MTB rider McKenna Merten at the Monster Downhill series round one.
KHS Pro MTB rider McKenna Merten at the Monster Downhill series round one.

On Friday morning, we practiced bright and early in the morning. Did a solid six laps learning and dialing in the course. The race track was running so well; there were a lot of technical rock sections mixed with fresh cut steep loam bits and quite a few fun features throughout the track; Neko Mulally and the guys at Rock Creek did an awesome job at putting a killer race course together for us. I chilled the rest of Friday, knowing we had a lot of work to do on the weekend. We went to the mountain on Saturday morning, got another four solid laps in on the course, and went right into seeding afterward.

KHS Pro MTB rider McKenna Merten at the Monster Downhill series round one.
KHS Pro MTB rider McKenna Merten at the Monster Downhill series round one.

I had a good and smooth seeding run, which slotted me into seventh place. Race day came before I knew it, and I couldn’t wait to see what I could do racing against some of the best…
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Tennessee Nationals

The first National of the year is already in the books, and our development athlete, MeKenna Merten, is holding it down in the Pro women’s category. With very limited time on the bike and little testing under her belt, McKenna would come out with a top 10 finish on the first major USA National of the year. Mackenna was definitely striving for more and, unfortunately, had a mechanical with her chain falling off near the top of her race run.

KHS Pro MTBrider MeKenna Merten at the Tennessee Nationals.
KHS Pro MTBrider MeKenna Merten at the Tennessee Nationals.

“Rough day out there today and the TN National. Unfortunately, I had a major mechanical problem halfway through my race run.” said McKenna, “Super bummed to have ended the first race of the year that way, but that part of racing. Back to work until the next one. I’m super hungry for more racing. Big thanks for KHS Bicycles and all our co-sponsors”.

KHS Pro MTBrider MeKenna Merten at the Tennessee Nationals.
KHS Pro MTBrider MeKenna Merten at the Tennessee Nationals.

The team and McKenna will continuously improve her adaptability to her KHS downhill bike and get her more tuned in. The entire team has been training very hard this off-season and will be hot and ready for the Seattle classic, where the whole team will be together for the first time in 2024. Once again, we want to thank all our sponsors, friends, family, and everyone who supports the dream!

 

Bella Naughton joins KHS Pro MTB

Born and raised in Flagstaff, Arizona, Bella grew up racing off-road trucks and ski racing. Her family raced mountain bikes, but she never found an interest in it until she was talked into joining her high school’s cross-country team in 2016. Bella then went to an enduro race with her mom and fell in love with going downhill and she hasn’t stopped since.

New KHS Pro MTB rider Bella Naughton.
New KHS Pro MTB rider Bella Naughton.

“I am excited to be on the KHS race team for 2024 and looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish together in Enduro and Downhill!” said Bella.

New KHS Pro MTB rider Bella Naughton.
New KHS Pro MTB rider Bella Naughton.

“We are thrilled to have one of the best female North American Enduro athletes join our squad for the 2024 season.” Logan Binggeli, KHS Pro MTB team manager said, “Bella is no stranger to podiums when it comes to the big mountain Enduro and other top-notch North American Enduro races. We are also excited to be supporting her when it comes to the Downhill side of things, she will be competing in the monster energy American downhill series along with other Premier events. We can’t wait to see what Bella Naughton can accomplish under the KHS umbrella, welcome to the family!”

New KHS Pro MTB rider Bella Naughton.
New KHS Pro MTB rider Bella Naughton.