Connor Fearon

Kona Dream Builds: Connor Fearon’s 2018 World Champs Operator CR 29

Connor’s manager and mechanic Mathieu Dupelle and his buddies at Impact Designs have made a habit of making life hard for themselves when it comes to Connor’s World Champs paint schemes. Each one topping the previous one just that little bit, I mean how many ways can you paint a bike green and gold? Well, it seems that Mathieu has found another way, and we think you’ll agree that this 2018 World Champs is a pretty bloody snazzy looking whip and could just be the best custom Operator Connor has ridden yet! #RooShooter


Fearon Qualifies 7th in La Bresse!

Kona ringer Connor Fearon crossed the line in 7th place today on a super short world cup track in La Bresse, France. This is the final world cup race of the season and the UCI have decided to save all points for the final tomorrow, meaning there is a lot on the line for everyone. Connor currently sits at #11 in the overall rankings so a strong result would have him finish in the top 1o overall, which would be an impressive achievement.

We are wishing Connor the best! Tune into Redbull TV for the live feed on Saturday!

 

Crankworx 2018

It’s been a whirlwind week as we wrapped up Crankworx Whistler, 2018 this past week. We rode the rollercoaster of a parched and smokey Whistler, BC for 10 days and what a ride it was!

With no official booth on site, we spent most of our week competing in events, catching up with old industry friends, and riding some of the best trails in the world.

Kona athletes had a strong showing in the EWS, Speed and Style, Air Downhill, Whip Offs, and the Canadian Open.

The Riders

Tristan Lemere, who took first place in the men’s junior category for Air DH AND Canadian Open DH!

 

EWS racer Alexander Kangas

 

EWS racer Scott Countryman

 

EWS racer and Kona Supreme, Hannah Bergemann

 

Super stylish mega whip master, Caleb Holonko

 

Downhill racer Anthony Poulson

 

Downhill racer and current holder of the #10 world ranking, Connor Fearon

 

Master of style and going big, Graham Agassiz

 

The Action

Kangas on course at the EWS

 

Bergemann navigating the Whistler forests during the EWS

 

Countryman on his way to 69th place in the EWS

 

Lemere on his way to victory in the Air Downhill

 

Kangas finished 35th on the iconic A Line track

 

Connor Fearon seems to really love the number 10. 10th place in the Air DH for the Aussi.

 

Anthony Poulson on A Line

 

Caleb Holonko in Speed and Style

 

Fearon going big in Whip Worlds

 

Aggy always gets sideways during Whip Worlds. Unfortunately, he went down and broke his scapula. Here’s hoping for a quick recovery!

 

Holonko made it to finals and was boosting huge the entire session.

 

Holonko in the stratosphere

 

Connor on his way to a scorching 2nd place in the Canadian Open DH.

Tristan Lemere taking his second gold of the week at the Canadian Open DH!

Congrats to all of the athletes and their amazing results. That’s a wrap for Cranwkorx 2018!

Fearon and Lemire Win in Canada

Last weekend Kona downhill racer Connor Fearon traded in his Operator for a Process 165 and won the Bromont leg of the Canadian National Enduro series ahead of notable riders Sam Thibault and Keegan Wright.

Connor’s timing chip didn’t work on the second stage so he had to climb up and repeat the stage, adding a huge extra climb to his day.

Meanwhile, junior rider Tristan Lemire won the downhill Canadian National Championships in the cadet category, giving Kona racing a hugely successful Canadian weekend! Congrats to Connor and Tristan!

 

Connor Fearon Experiences Four Seasons in One Weekend at Val di Sole

Val di Sole this past weekend marked the middle point of the UCI DH World Cup season and the return to one the more classic DH courses of the last decade. Val di Sole is not for the faint-hearted, massive roots, huge holes and its sheer steepness have always meant that the racing and results can be somewhat unpredictable.

Due to Connors hand injury, he missed last years final world cup round at Val di Sole where some major course changes were made. Arriving at the course for round four last weekend he had this to say. “The track looks good this year. Val di Sole is definitely the hardest track on the circuit. It’s just gnarly section after gnarly section the whole way down. I missed this race last year when they made lots of changes so about half the track is new to me. It looks like there’s some rain coming but the track dries up really quickly so I’d say it’s going to be dry come race day”

Connor was not wrong about race day being dry, however, the forecasted storms did arrive and timed training, practice and qualification bore the brunt of that. Rain on the track really shock up the qualifications with times posted before the downpour being considerably faster, a large number of riders from the back of the field made it to the main event while some heavy hitters, not able to cope with the changing conditions had to enjoy the non-quali-party. “The track is really hard to ride in the wet. There’s just roots and rocks the whole way down it’s hard to even steer straight” Connor, although protected and racing his qualification run in the wet, posted a solid 13th result, earning more points towards his overall standings.

Kona UK rider Josh Lowe took advantage of the somewhat drier qualification conditions earlier in the day and posted a 52nd, on race day he backed that up with a very respectible 49th!

“My qualification run was fine. Everyone knew it was going to be really hard to get down and the time gaps supported that. I had a steady run with no crashes and I’m super happy to get some points. Will be interesting if it’s wet like that for finals, but I think it will be dry!”

Connors positive predictions of a dry race day would come to fruition, if you hadn’t been there for the previous days you’d think it was a normal day in the Valley of the Sun. The only downside? No one had really had a chance to ride the track in the dry, and the Black Snake was for all intensive purposes a new course. A full days racing and practice in the dry had really shaken things up and when Connor crossed the line onboard his 29″ wheeled Operator on Saturday it would be for 19th place.

“I was pretty disappointed in how I rode for finals in Italy. The track was a lot different on race day because it had fully dried out and was much faster. We didn’t have much practice to get up to speed on essentially a new track. I just missed the speed a bit and didn’t send it hard enough. I still keep my 11th overall plate which is good. It has me fired up for Andorra where I know I can do well this weekend”

We think a top 20 in Val di Sole is pretty damn good!

Connor Crushes in Leogang!

Connor Fearon has had his best finish of the World Cup season with a 7th place scorcher in Leogang. This season has shown incredibly tight racing and Leogang was no exception. Always a dramatic race, Connor was able to keep his focus and take his Operator to the line with killer speed. Connor now moves up to 11th overall with goals to get even higher in the standings as the season progresses.

“Finals went down today! I was actually really nervous for racing. I had two good practice runs in the morning (maybe its a bit of superstition but my 3rd run is always the charm) and chilled out for racing. The format this year is pretty cool. I can stay down and watch the women and juniors all race which is especially helpful if the track changes a lot. You can see on the big screens whats going on with the track. It’s cool qualifying in the top 10 because that late in the day there aren’t many riders or spectators hanging around the top anymore. It’s eerily quiet actually and I like it. I prefer to have fewer people watching me ride!

My run was sweet I think I could have pushed it a bit harder in some sections but still stoked for 7th place. The World Cups this year seem like a different level. 1st place to 20th is packed with fast guys so it’s good to be towards the front. I’m sitting 11th now overall and I’m hoping to chip that number down some more over the next couple races! I’m heading home now for a couple weeks to get stuck into some training and riding. I find it a lot more useful being home then traveling around the world without a real schedule for training etc.. So yeah, overall good weekend and looking forward to Val Di Sole!” – Connor Fearon

 

Fearon Qualifies 8th in Leogang!

Connor Fearon has qualified 8th at the Leogang World Cup. Rolling down the freshly updated course on 29″ wheels on his new Operator CR. Fearon says he’s become accustomed to the bigger wheels and felt they suited him better this weekend with the recent changes to the track.

“I’m actually really pleased with 8th today for qualifying. The top 20 these days are packed with really fast riders so it’s good to be towards the front. The times are insanely close again. I know I was pretty slow compared to the guys in front of me on the ‘motorway’ section so I’ll have to pedal harder and keep more speed over the jumps where I can make up some time. I will be pushing hard for a top 10 or better tomorrow. I used to really like this track because it had a lot of sweet corners and forest sections. It changed over the last few years to more of a straight line bike park track and I didn’t like it as much last year, but with the changes they’ve made this year the track is closer to what I love to ride most and I’ve been having heaps of fun which is key to having a good result for me.” -Connor Fearon

 

 

 

Best of luck, Conner! You can tune into Redbull.com to watch the race live on Sunday morning! 

Leogang is Coming!

We’re in the second week of back-to-back World Cup races. This week the Kona crew travels to Leogang – a track that always entertains. With a hint of bike park and some new technical bits thrown in, Connor Fearon is feeling good.

After today’s track walk Fearon’s opinion of the track seemed to improve. “I came to Leogang expecting the same old track, which was mainly a gravel path with some short technical sections at the end. It was sweet to see they have skipped a few sections here and there adding in some natural technical terrain. The track now has lines everywhere and I’m really excited! It’s cool here because with the short track you can do heaps of runs without getting tired or anything. I’m looking forward to riding tomorrow for sure!”

We’ll be posting updates from Connor as they come in!

Lucky #13

We’re bucking tradition with this week’s race result. Kona ripper Connor Fearon finished his Fort William weekend with a great performance landing in 13th place, moving him into protected status for next week’s race in Leogang. Connor was just 1.5 seconds off of the podium in a super tight race.

“I was pretty happy with the way I rode for FortWilliamm. 13th doesn’t sound like an outstanding result but I just got unlucky being just behind a whole bunch of guys on the same second. Just 1.5 seconds faster and I would have been on the podium. It’s crazy to think it comes down to that after over four and a half minutes of high-speed rock smashing. I was really happy with the way the new 29er rode. After the weekend I’m 15th overall which should mean I’m back being protected which is a relief.” -Connor Fearon

Tegan Malloy finished the weekend in 16th place and put on a jump clinic for the spectators. All in all it was a solid weekend for the Kona crew! Stay tuned for updates from Leogang as the week progreses!

Fearon Qualifies 7th, Malloy Makes the Big Show in Fort William!

It was a good day for the Kona riders in Fort William. Connor Fearon took the track by storm and finished with a scorching 7th fastest qualifying time aboard his fresh new Operator. On the women’s side Tegan Malloy laid down a 5:44 to qualify in 15th.

“I’ve been having heaps of fun at fort William as usual. I like the high speeds and turns the whole way down the track. I feel really comfortable on the 29er here… it’s the first world cup I’ve used it and I’m liking it! 7th is my best qualifying result at fort William so it’s got me confident for tomorrow. I think unless it rains a lot the times are going to be really tight for the top 20… so I’ll be trying really hard to be at the front of that bubble tomorrow!

-Connor Fearon

“The track here in Fort William is super hard packed and is running faster than ever. The new “woods section” has been replaced with a man-made rock garden that is running really quick from top to bottom. I’m going to run the exact same set up for racing as I did for qualifying, I felt comfortable on my bike with a few little things to tweak/ tidy up before finals tomorrow.” -Tegan Malloy

Congrats to both riders and good luck! Tune into Redbull TV at 4:30am Pacific Time to watch all the action live!

Connor 8th in Fort Bill Timed Training

Kona’s premier downhill racer, Connor Fearon stopped the clock with the 8th fastest time today at the Fort William World Cup. Connor will be racing his brand new carbon Operator with 29″ wheels because he feels they handle the rough track the best. There’s been some good coverage of Connor and his bike as well as Kona racer Anthony Poulson aboard his new Operator as well.

Check the links for the info:

Singletrack World: Kona has a new carbon Operator downhill bike, and it’s 29er ready

VitalMTB: Connor Fearon’s Kona Supreme Operator for Fort William

VitalMTB Raw sneak peeks of racers, including Connor, on track