We’ve got quite the treat for you this Ti Tuesday. Paul Russo recently hit us up to say he’d bought his Haole brand new back in 1992 – and that means he’s had it for 25 years, or half his lifetime! Obviously we were keen to feature the bike, but the story gets even better. This Haole’s been places! We’ll leave it to Paul to give you the goods…
I purchased my Kona Ti Haole in February of 1992, from Roy’s Sheepshead Cycle in Brooklyn, and have been riding it consistently ever since.
At the time of purchase, I was 25 years old and had participated in my first triathlon the previous summer. It was then that I decided I wanted to pursue the sport of cycling on a higher level. After months of research, I knew I wanted to go with titanium, and Roy recommended the Kona Ti to me as a great frame, that was within my budget.
While I did participate in a few crash-marred local road races, the focus of my riding for the next decade was triathlon. The highlights include three Ironman distance races, a half dozen half Ironman races and many century rides. The most notable of all was when I took my Kona Ti to Kona HI, to race in the 1999 Ironman Triathlon World Championships.
Since then, with my last competitive race over a decade ago, I’ve continued to ride and train. Over the last few years, I my had my Haole set up as a commuter bike, navigating the potholed streets of New York City. While I don’t commute on it anymore, it did hold up well to the abuse. As you can tell from the pictures, the current state of the bike is a bit marked up and some of the associated components might be a bit dated, but it’s still a great ride.
What’s the future of my Kona? I’ve been toying with the idea of doing a triathlon again at some point. This winter, I’m planning to set up my bike on an indoor trainer for some winter training from the comfort of my basement.
I fully expect to have and ride my Kona Ti for many more years to come. Thanks for making a great frame.
Paul Russo, 50
Brooklyn, New York
What a testament to the longevity of Ti! Scroll down for more details of this well-traveled Haole, and when you’re done, peruse the Ti Tuesday archives and #TiTuesdaysWithKona on Instagram. If you’ve got a Ti Kona bike, please do get in touch!