2022 USA National Championships

KHS Pro MTB rider Kailey Skelton wins the 2022 US National Downhill Championship in Winter Park Colorado.

What an amazing race. The 2022 US national championship was definitely one for the books from start to finish. Held in the high-altitude mountains of Winter Park Colorado this was one to Remember. Team KHS Pro MTB would be racing events such as Dual Slalom, Enduro and Downhill.

KHS Pro MTB rider Nathan Kitchen on track at the USA National Downhill Championships.
KHS Pro MTB rider Nathan Kitchen on track at the USA National Downhill Championships.

 

Practice for Downhill and Enduro would fire off early in the week starting Tuesday. Everyone on the team will be competing in Downhill. It would be Nik Nestoroff holding it down for the Enduro category. Wednesday and Thursday would consist of two-hour sessions on the downhill track. The team would be dialing in the lines and making their best efforts to have the track completely in tune for Saturday’s seeding.

KHS Pro MTB rider Nik Nestoroff on track at the USA National Downhill Championships.
KHS Pro MTB rider Nik Nestoroff on track at the USA National Downhill Championships.

Friday would consist priorly of Dual Slalom. Steven Walton and Nate kitchen would be practicing, qualifying and racing finals all within six hours on Friday. Both athletes would qualify within the top 10 to seed them perfectly in the round of 32. The track was short, snappy and very physical. Steven Walton would make it through his first round and go onto the round of 16, from there would have some tough competition and be eliminated in the second round with good efforts and showing high amounts of speed against the best build in America. Nate Kitchen would be holding it down in the junior pro category and would make it all the way to the second to find round battling for third and fourth position on his final run when he would unfortunately have a massive crash due to his bicycle crank arm coming in contact with a flag and taking him down hard. His crash would result in a broken collarbone and be taking him out of Sunday’s final downhill race. Nate was definitely one tough cookie and even with his costly crash he would be holding down a national podium for junior pro and would be fourth overall for the day.

KHS Pro MTB rider Steven Walton on track at the USA National Downhill Championships.
KHS Pro MTB rider Steven Walton on track at the USA National Downhill Championships.

Saturday would entail all the best American Enduro riders all fighting for a title there were four grueling stages all very physical and high demanding. Winter Park has always been known to be more on the physical side instead of the talent side. Nik Nestoroff would complete all three stages and head into the final stage in the top three positions. 30 seconds before the final stage he would have a big mechanical that was completely out of his control with losing his chain derailleur and unfortunately finish eighth overall in the pro men’s Enduro category. On top of the Enduro final going on Downhill seeding was late that afternoon; it would be the first top to bottom timed run to see where all the athletes would be sitting. With a solid run for Kailey, she would seed first and gain great confidence going into Sunday’s final. Both Nik and Steven would seed in the top 20 positions and have a lot more in the bank to give in the finals come Sunday.

KHS Pro MTB rider Kailey Skelton on track at the USA National Downhill Championships.
KHS Pro MTB rider Kailey Skelton on track at the USA National Downhill Championships.

Sunday would start off with bright blue sunny sky with an awesome practice session from all the athletes. As the amateur ranks made it down the mountain for their final runs the athletes were waiting their turn to head up the gondola for their final race run, literally lightning struck and the US national championship downhill race was on hold due to severe rainfall and lightning. Within 30 minutes there was approximately 3 to 4 inches of rain dumped down on the track changing conditions dramatically and making for an unknown run for all the riders with wet slippery conditions. Steven Walton would try his best to acclimate to the ever-changing conditions and with a clean solid run he would finish 32nd out of the field of 150 pro downhill racers. Nik Nestoroff would have a blazing run and hold down the hot seat for a good portion of the race until overall he would finish ninth place. It would all be up to Kailey Skelton to back her 2021 national championship title up. She would be the last woman down the racetrack with tremendous pressure on her shoulders not only to back up her first place seeding run but to back up her 2021 national championship title. Kailey would have a massive bobble at the top, nearly almost crashing but keeping the rubber side down and putting the bottom half of the course to her advantage. Kailey crossed the line and would win her second national title ever in her career. The emotions would fly high for the entire team with Kailey claiming her second title and becoming the 2022 US national Pro women’s downhill champion.

KHS Pro MTB rider Kailey Skelton wins the 2022 US National Downhill Championship in Winter Park Colorado.
KHS Pro MTB rider Kailey Skelton wins the 2022 US National Downhill Championship in Winter Park Colorado.

The team will definitely be celebrating all of their achievements and hard work over the weekends, but not for too long most of the team will be heading off to West Virginia for the UCI World Cup Downhill being held next weekend. Once again, we’d always like to thank all of our sponsors, friends, family and fans for all the tremendous support. It was another amazing national championship event with KHS Bicycles claiming another title!

 

Big Sky Montana Enduro

What do you do when the race you went to Montana for gets canceled? Here is what Nik Nestoroff does.

KHS Pro MTB Podiums at Mountain Creek

KHS Pro MTB rider Steven Walton racing at Mountain Creek resort in NJ.

The team was firing off on all cylinders for the second round of the Downhill national series hosted at Mountain Creek bike Park, in Vernon, New Jersey. The team would be arriving Wednesday to get acclimated to the East Coast conditions and get the bikes all prepped and built up from the long travels. Thursday would kick off with track walk which would consist of a very explosive track Mountain Creek has always had some of the best downhill tracks in America. With super steep conditions, lots of rocks challenging lines and an overall physically demanding track there was not much missing from being an absolutely amazing track.

KHS Pro MTB rider Steven Walton racing at Mountain Creek resort in NJ.
KHS Pro MTB rider Steven Walton racing at Mountain Creek resort in NJ.

Friday would be day one of practice and we had some heavy competition on the mountain Dakota Norton from Factory Intense along with Neko Mulley would be among the field which was your current and past national champions. The whole team had a solid day of practice besides a massive crash from Kailey Skelton that would have involved a severe sprained wrist. Unfortunately, this would sideline Kailey for the remaining event and even put her overall championship title hopes on the fence.

KHS Pro MTB rider Nik Nestoroff racing at Mountain Creek resort in NJ.
KHS Pro MTB rider Nik Nestoroff racing at Mountain Creek resort in NJ.

Saturday which would be qualifying day would intel of big weather changes that would now put rain into the equation. It would change the track dramatically and make for a completely new track to get down. With the new slick conditions, the team would qualify with Steven Walton sitting in 10th position, Nik Nestoroff 5th position and out Jr. Pro Nathan Kitchen grabbing 4th. All the athletes would have their work cut out for them come Sunday finals. Good news the weather was not sticking around it would be lining up Finals to make out with perfect conditions!

KHS Pro MTB rider Nathan Kitchen racing at Mountain Creek resort in NJ.
KHS Pro MTB rider Nathan Kitchen racing at Mountain Creek resort in NJ.

Sunday finals would bring out massive crowds and fans to cheer on the full day of racing! All three athletes would take a look at the ever-changing lines on track to make sure they were set for their final run. Our Jr. Pro would stay consistent on all track conditions coming in a solid 4th place. Steven Walton would throw down a blistering time and come in podium position taking 5th place. It would be Nik Nestoroff who would be holding down the hot seat for some time but would end up 3rd place with a stellar run! All three athletes did an excellent job throughout the event and kept in the hunt for the championship title!! The team has a moment off till round 2 of the BME Enduro series up in Big Sky, Montana. The team would like to continue to thank all our sponsors, friends and family for all the amazing support.

 

 

Kailey & Nik’s YouTube Channel

Check out KHS Pro MTB riders Kailey Skelton and Nik Nestoroff’s YouTube Channel! they take you on their day to day life and you get to see what two top level mountain pro riders do every day.

check them out HERE

Podiums at the 2022 Sea Otter Classic

KHS Pro MTB rider Kailey Skelton racing down the downhill track at Sea Otter.
KHS pro MTB rider Nate Kitchens first place for Jr. Dual Slalom race at Sea Otter.
KHS pro MTB rider Nate Kitchens first place for Jr. Dual Slalom race at Sea Otter.

Sea Otter Classic 2022 is back in full swing with a massive international field of racers and vendors attending! It was absolutely excellent to see everyone enjoying the festival that has been such a notable iconic event for many decades. Team KHS Pro MTB would be in full effect racing Enduro, Dual Slalom and Downhill!

KHS Pro MTB rider Nik Nestoroff standing 3rd place on the enduro podium at Sea Otter.
KHS Pro MTB rider Nik Nestoroff standing 3rd place on the enduro podium at Sea Otter.

It would be Nik Nestoroff firing off Pro men’s Enduro for his first Sea Otter Enduro of his career. He was very excited that two out of the four stages would come with experience being stages on DH and Slalom. The other two stages would be grueling physical stages that would almost be closer to XC racing than Enduro, but with the mix of all the stages and Nik’s experience he would come out with an amazing top 3 finish against some of the world’s best athletes.

KHS Pro MTB rider Steven Walton racing down the downhill track at Sea Otter.
KHS Pro MTB rider Steven Walton racing down the downhill track at Sea Otter.

Nate Kitchen would be holding down our Junior Pro division in Dual Slalom who would be representing us in our next event. After qualifying in the number one position out of a stacked field of the best Slalom juniors in the states he would battle his way all the way through all 32 athletes to tear the number one spot and a Sea Otter title!

KHS Pro MTB rider Steven Walton racing down the downhill track at Sea Otter.
KHS Pro MTB rider Steven Walton racing down the downhill track at Sea Otter.

With everyone already accomplishing massive results and not even the weekend officially here it would finally be time for Pro Women’s and Men’s Dual Slalom to take place. After the qualifying dust would settle it would be Kailey Skelton in the top 15 and both Steven Walton & Nik Nestoroff would be sitting in the top 20. The athletes would be going straight from qualifying into the final rounds of 32. Kailey Skelton would battle her first ever Dual Slalom appearance that would lead her to a top 16 finish. Nik & Steven would have high hopes since they were bringing confidence from 2018 when they both finished on the podium. Unfortunately, with some small mistakes and crashes they would both be out of the battle in their first rounds.

KHS Pro MTB rider Kailey Skelton racing down the downhill track at Sea Otter.
KHS Pro MTB rider Kailey Skelton racing down the downhill track at Sea Otter.

Heading into Sunday’s Downhill finals it would be the Pro’s firing off first. Kailey Skelton would give it her all to come across the line and finish in a solid 6th place. In the Pro men’s category, it would be Nik finishing in 17th position and Steven in 20th against the best racers in the world. The highlight of the day would be Nate Kitchen who would dominate the field in Junior Pro’s and take the big win!

Overall the team had accomplished amazing achievements with two major titles in the junior division one Pro podium in Enduro and multiple top 20 finishes. It is great to see the team always making an impact on the MTB community and doing a great job role modeling the next generation! KHS Pro MTB wants to thank all our sponsors, friends and family for the continuous support. The team has one week off before the head to the Pacific Northwest to compete in Port Angeles.