It represents one of the biggest weekends of downhill racing in Kona’s 28 year history. For the first time in his young career, and after battling injury and bad luck, 21-year-old Connor Fearon jumped on to a World Cup podium. After numerous top 10 finishes over the past three years, Fearon was finally able to put it all together on the storied track of the Leogang Bike Park. His second place finish was just .045 seconds off of Aaron Gwinn’s winning pace. “I still can’t believe it’s happened,” said Fearon right after the race. “I’m so excited and happy for everyone who’s help me get here, it’s been quite the ride and feels incredible to stand up on a World Cup podium. A dream come true.”
His Kona/Fox teammate, Andrew Crimmins, blew the doors off the competition, winning Junior Men’s by over three seconds. This is Crimmins second win of the year, putting him back on top as the points leader in the World Cup overall. Not since Fabien Barel’s World Championship win in 2005 has Kona seen this level of success on the World Cup level. Of course, we couldn’t be more proud of our team. In a sport measured in milliseconds, where so much can go wrong, and the stakes are this high, we feel very lucky to have a great group of patient, humble, professional, and wildly talented riders. The future is definitely bright.
A big congrats to Mathieu Dupelle, who runs the team, and Tegan Molloy, who battled through two crashes to still place a respectable 15th. Duncan Philpott photos.