Orange and red may not be complementary colors, but one thing's for sure - it's going to be hard to miss Connor Fearon when he hits the track on his new Kona Operator. Connor actually has two bikes built up for the race, one with 27.5" wheels and the other with 29" wheels. According to team mechanic Mathieu Dupelle, "It's basically being ready for what comes at him for which track, what type of terrain, and what he feels comfortable with. I wanted him to make sure he's comfortable in all ways."
The new Operator frame makes wheel size changes easy, thanks to a flip chip on the seatstay that allows the bottom bracket height to be raised or lowered to compensate for the wheel height. There are also two chainstay positions, and a reach adjust headset for dialing in the bike's fit depending on the style of track that's being raced. Connor's two bikes are set up to feel nearly identical, although he did go down in spring rate and air pressure on the 29er.
Connor's been testing the bike since late last December, and it's still in the developmental stage, but the plan is to bring it into production later this year.
Those colored headset caps help make it easier to identify which bike is which.