For Bailey Goldstone, racing bikes were always part of her growing up. The 20-year-old from Squamish, BC has been riding bikes since she could walk, learning how to corner at local and regional BMX races before getting into downhill racing around the age of 10. She never looked back.
“I started racing in the Phat Wednesday series in the Whistler Bike Park then when I was 13, I competed in my first proper DH race at Sunpeaks for the Canadian National DH Champs,” says Goldstone. “Back then I was the only girl racing in my category, but it’s so awesome to see now that every female category is full of competitors!”
While the momentum of young female DH racing was building, Bailey looked to the elite women for inspiration, both down the street and on the world stage.
“Being from Squamish, I really looked up to Miranda Miller since she was our hometown hero. Miranda was super involved in the community, and that was really inspiring for young female riders especially. I loved watching the British World Cup riders like Tahnee Seagrave, Rachel Atherton and Manon Carpenter, but I think I’ve taken some inspiration from every female rider I watched at events or rode with.”
At 20, Bailey has already experienced her own challenges and setbacks. In 2021 she suffered a scary crash that left her rehabbing a dislocated collarbone for about six months and unsure whether she would return to racing at all. Despite limited off-season training, she came back with force in the 2022 Canadian race season.
“I completely surprised myself when I had an amazing year full of podiums and wins,” recalls Bailey. “To top it off, I got the win at Nationals and earned my Canadian Sleeve! I was so happy and proud of myself; I couldn’t stop smiling for days.”
Bailey’s bike setup for the 2023 race season is a mixed-wheel Santa Cruz V10 with Race Face Atlas cranks and stem, SixC carbon bars and ARC 31 rims laced with Vault Hubs. A FOX 40 and DHX2 Coil round out her race-ready rig.
“I think the wheels might be one of my favourite parts,” she says. The ARC carbon rims with white decals look as deadly as they run. So far, I have had no mercy throwing them down some super rough terrain, and they have held up incredibly. Having the smaller rear wheel has made it super easy to throw it around in corners and in the air while still maintaining the faster rolling speed in the front.”
Looking ahead to 2023, Bailey has a packed season with National and Provincial events with a sprinkling of international races in the US and Europe. Right now, she is training in New Zealand with her first event booked at Crankworx Rotorua March 18-26. While primarily a racer, Bailey has found a new interest in media and hopes to get a few video shoots under her belt this year.
While many inspiring women have helped pave the wave for Bailey’s generation of racers, she wants to pay it forward to the next crop of female mountain bikers.
“I’ve had the opportunity to take some of these girls under my wing and help guide them on their path in the MTB world,” she says. “It’s great to see some young fast talent like Tayte Proulx-Royds and Cami Bragg come out on the predominantly racer side while still killing it in freeride. Then there are the likes of Lucy Van Eesteren and Natasha Miller mostly on the freeride side while still being fast as at the races. Events like Dark Horse and Hangtime have been great at helping some of the more experienced women teach and guide the younger girls, both on and off the bike. I think that the future of Women’s racing and freeride are in good hands.”
Bailey’s Santa Cruz V10
Fork: FOX 40 Factory (75psi)
Shock: DHX2 (500lb Coil)
Cranks: Atlas 165mm
Pedals: Shimano Saint SPD
Bars: SixC 35
Stem: Atlas 35 Direct Mount
Seatpost: Next SL Carbon
Tires: Maxxis Assegai Front, Minion DHF Rear
Brakes: Shimano Saint