Who have been your favourite riders of the past 20 years?
“Joe Murray, Dave Turner, Bruce Spicer, Max Jones, Cindy Devine, Dave Wiens, Seamus McGrath, Peter Wedge, Roland Green, Kirk Molday, Dario Cioni, Nathalie Fiat, Steve Peat, Antti-Pekka Laiho, Geoff Kabush, Ryder Hesjedal, Tomi and Pau Misser, Stefano Migliorini, Greg Minnaar, Scott Beaumont, Fabien Barel, Tracy Moseley, Kamil Tatarkovič, Robbie Bourdon, John Cowan, Paul Basagoitia, Grant Allen, Grant Fielder, Karim Amour, Barry Wicks, Ryan Trebon, Erik Tonkin, Spencer Paxson, Cory Wallace, Kris Sneddon, Antoine Bizet, Graham Agassiz, Tegan Molloy, Connor Fearon – look them up, they’ve all ridden or raced for Kona over the years. Who did I miss?”
What rider has most pushed the boundaries over the past 20 years?
“To look to a specific point in our history we can look back to the Kona Clump Team. Things like Dave Watson jumping over the Tour de France, Robbie “Air” Bourdon sending it bigger than was thought imaginable, John Cowan hitting moto-sized dirt jumps on a mountain bike, or Paul Basagoitia barging onto the scene at Crankworx ushering in a new era of slopestyle competition. In more recent years we have seen Graham Agassiz and Antoine Bizet continue to push the boundaries of what can be done on a bike, while someone like Cory Wallace is accomplishing the unimaginable racing and winning almost every epic solo endurance mountain bike event around the world”.
What has been your favourite or most memorable race?
“I’d be lying if I didn’t say it was Fabien Barel winning the World Championships in 2004 and 2005 first in Les Gets and then Livigno. No one worked harder than Fabien at his discipline or had to overcome hardship especially in 2005. And nothing’s better than a championship celebration!”
What does the next 20 years bring for mountain biking?
“Change is the only constant. 20 years ago we couldn’t have seen where materials and technology are right now. To think of 20 more years’ refinement from where we’re at right now is exciting”.
What’s your opinion on E-Bikes?
What life lessons has mountain biking taught you?
“Carry emergency supplies. Everyone likes a cold one. The last run should be the one you just did and not the next one you say will be the last one. Don’t vote Republican.”
What’s been the most questionable thing to come out of mountain biking?
“We’ve got boxes of this stuff in the basement, but we’ve learned from all of it and it’s what keeps us pushing forward”.
Who doesn’t get the credit they deserve in the industry?
“Advocacy organizations like IMBA, NEMBA and NSMBA and hundreds of others like them. Cyclists and the bicycle business take the work that’s done for granted and need to get involved in ensuring that there will be always places to ride”.