Kona Factory Team Australia - 2013 National Championships

Feb 26, 2013
by Lewis Kerr  
For the first time in three years National Championships returned to the Nation's capital of Canberra, to the same location as the 2008 World Cup and 2009 World Championships. Whilst the hill has much to live up to in terms of track quality, the quality of the field racing was more than exceptional. With the likes of Sam Hill, Troy Brosnan, Mick Hannah, Chris Kovarik and Jared Graves, the racing was set to come down to the line and come down to the line it did. Representing the team for the weekend was Tegan Molloy, Dean Lucas and Connor Fearon.

Views: 14,510    Faves: 84    Comments: 5


National Championships is a long affair with practice and track walk drawn out over five days rather than the usual three. Arriving in Canberra on Wednesday, the track was dry and the sun was out, a polar opposite compared to what race day would turn out to be. The track itself is a very tough track to race on with large sections of rock gardens, gaps and near endless corners. The hard pack surface and nature of the track favored a stiffer setup than usual, especially due to the lack of vertical meters.

2013 Australian National MTB Championships Photo credit to - Tim Arch http www.timothyarch.com www.facebook.com KonaFactoryTeamAU

Whilst the weather remained nice for the majority of the practice days, riders woke up on seeding morning to the sound of heavy rain falling. The rain didn’t let up all day, and well and truly settled in for the weekend, completely changing the track and race dynamics, becoming anyone’s for the win. At the completion of seeding the Kona Factory Team was left standing in a solid position through the results with Tegan seeding second fastest in U19 Female, Dean second fastest in U19 Male, and Connor in 14th in Elite Male on board a pre-production carbon frame.

2013 Australian National MTB Championships Photo credit to - Tim Arch http www.timothyarch.com www.facebook.com KonaFactoryTeamAU

Come race day, despite the constant rain the team was in fairly good spirits. With the Kona Operators stripped down and rebuilt overnight, weathered parts replaced and fresh tyres for race day, the bikes were running perfectly. The team completed two practice runs with a quick break in the clouds creating a very sticky run down. Come race time, the impeding clouds were on their way again and bound to hit during racing. As we were at the top of the track warming up, the rain hit, and it hit hard. The kind of rain that is heavy and relentless, the kind of rain that soaks you through to the bone.

2013 Australian National MTB Championships Photo credit to - Tim Arch http www.timothyarch.com www.facebook.com KonaFactoryTeamAU

Tegan was first rider down the track for the team in the conditions and her National Champs campaign was cut short halfway down with a flat tyre blown off the rim, wheeling her bike across the finish line into fourth place. Next rider down was Dean, and after finishing bridesmaid to Connor in the 2012 National Champs he was keen to get a win on the board and the right to wear the national jersey for 2013. Taking the hot seat at the bottom and with only one rider left to come down, it was up to Tom Crimmins. Crossing the line two seconds down on Dean, the Kona Factory Team had our first National Champion! In an attempt to make it two National Champion titles for the team in one weekend, Connor put in his best and pushed through the pain barrier on a course that never suited his style to finish 11th in Elite Men. The podium ended up consisting of Troy Brosnan in 5th, Chris Kovarik in 4th, Sam Hill in 3rd, Jared Graves in 2nd, and Mick Hannah taking out the top step of the podium.

2013 Australian National MTB Championships Photo credit to - Tim Arch http www.timothyarch.com www.facebook.com KonaFactoryTeamAU

We have a few weeks before we hit the road to the Victorian Alpine town of Bright where the final round of the National Series will be fought out and series champions will be decided.

Thanks to our sponsors for their ongoing support. Kona, Mavic, Race Face, Maxxis, SRAM, Rockshox, Avid, Adidas Eyewear, Fox Head, GoPro, Evoc, Revolution MTB Mag, Timothy Arch Photography and Torq.


46 Comments

  • + 39
 I ride a Kona (not a trek), I drive a truck ( not a white corvette), I have a wife (not a special man friend) Think about it, Kona's rule.
  • + 1
 Yeah BuddyBig Grin So very true. Also Kona needs to throw on Fox 40 on the front to match the Fox Shox on the back end.
  • + 3
 Yeah BuddyBig Grin So very true. Looks like there is no Fox shox on the back end now..... huh. Switch to Fox and I'll buy a new bike Kona.... If not I'll stick with my custom Kona Freight Train till the ultimate bike is built. Not paying 4-5 thousand for a new bike with parts I don't like.
  • + 1
 That would look sick
  • + 10
 Can someone please explain why a lot of professional riders have havoc's on their bikes ? I thought they had problems with spokes and hub reliability ? Does easton sponsors plenty of riders to have them ride on their wheels ?


+ this carbon operator looks soooo sexy Big Grin
  • + 11
 The orange is even sexier!
  • + 1
 Rear hub comes loose and eyelets can come loose, other than that (in my experience), they're great
  • + 2
 I was told they fixed the problem so I purchased a set. I'm 99kg and I ride like a freight train and I've had 0% problems. I'm a super happy camper!
  • + 2
 No hub problems? I've heard you can buy a better axle setup, I'll have to order it
  • + 15
 pro rider's equipment only has to last one run, that's why they have amazing mechanics!
  • - 6
flag A-Nay3186 (Feb 26, 2013 at 19:45) (Below Threshold)
 I like the frame but the red boxxers on that one..... WHY?!
  • + 4
 Same as everyone, I love how the carbon operators look.
  • + 2
 havocs are really good the straight pull spokes ake it harder to break them and just put some lock tight on the axle it wont movre bud
  • + 0
 I saw a few guys going around the pits at world cup, picking up damaged wheels that teams were about to throw away... It was like few Deemaxes, few Nukeproofs and a truck of Havocs... might be just a coincidence Big Grin
  • + 1
 Have same problems with my mavic SX rear hub keeps working loose
  • + 12
 omg that bike is unbelivably sexy...
  • + 5
 True that...what I wouldn't do to get one
  • + 4
 what I wouldn't do is a very short list...
  • + 9
 You can tell its a carbon cause of the way it is ! How neat is that !
  • + 5
 thats preee neat!
  • + 7
 Kona is gonna make bank with this new carbon frame. I've never been a kona advocate but now I want one. Massive step in the right direction on their part.
  • + 1
 Couldn't agree more. This is gonna be the bike that puts Kona back in the game
  • + 6
 Anyone besides me wanting a review on this bike from Connor? Like ride characteristics and handling? They certainly look awesome but do they ride as well?
  • + 7
 pure carbon sexiness...
  • + 5
 That bike is pure sex distilled down into a carbon and aluminum beauty.
  • + 2
 exactly! took the words out of my mouth!
  • + 2
 Wow. Is this happening? A Kona thread where no is slagging of at their bikes. Personally, I like the Kona bikes, the Operators look awesome, both the carbon fibre and the aluminium versions. The Stinky is one that's kind of grown on me. I used to hate the Stinky's. Just based on how their rear linkage design looked with the bars that stick right out the back but now it doesn't really bother me. I really do like Kona, they're a good brand that's certainly getting better. (Not that they were that bad to begin with.)
  • + 2
 It hard for even the hater's to knock this last batch of Kona's. They just look good.
  • + 3
 hugely underestimated as a bike everyone slags off Kona but i think they are awesome bikes best handling bike i have ever ridden
  • + 5
 the look of the bikes and the kit has greatly improved I must say.
  • + 2
 NETSKY!!! Lol I've been listening to this song non stop the last few days.
  • + 2
 I'm so sorry.
  • + 0
 audio track is a little f*cked up though? I don't know if someone's done it on purpose but it sounds pretty bad.
Not saying I don't like the song, it's sick. I've seen it live. But I think the levels are all messed up
  • + 1
 and the song is....?
  • + 1
 puppy by netsky
  • + 1
 thaks! ^^
  • + 1
 omg you ar the best guys i ride kona operator 2012 i will take suprem 2012 kona IS BEST
  • + 1
 Omg I've seen dry land . I thought it was a UK miyth
  • + 1
 that conner kid, good rider, kinda a poofta haircut tho.... Go Kona!
  • + 1
 Isn't that stinky! ha pun intended! go kona!
  • + 1
 Holy jabrony
  • + 1
 Kovarik is back!
  • + 1
 He was back at Buller, Round 1
  • + 1
 Kovarik = Intense
  • - 3
 kona i hate you !
Below threshold threads are hidden

Post a Comment



Copyright © 2000 - 2019. Pinkbike.com. All rights reserved.
dv65 0.034771
Mobile Version of Website