Connor Fearon and Graham Agassiz are at the top of their respective disciplines but have very different needs. One is a World Cup downhill racer who requires stability, while the other is a freerider who needs playfulness.
These two concepts might seem to run counter to each other, but as you can see in the edit above, the Kona Operator is designed to keep both riders happy.
To operate at both ends of this intended use spectrum, this bike’s suspension platform has been updated with a more progressive leverage curve for better bottom out resistance. Bearings are now found in all the suspension pivots and the upper shock mount, which helps to reduce static friction. The other major change involves raising the main pivot for better pedaling characteristics.
What about the geometry? Well, the original model was already on the forefront of the long and slack trend, so Kona didn’t need to do much to modernize this platform. They did, however, lengthen the front center and slacken the headtube angle, but the basic concept remained the same. For example, the chainstays only grew by 3mm, which was largely due to the increase in wheel size.
Fearon has been racing prototypes for the past year and claims the new bike handles similar to the 26” Operator, but is more capable on steeper and gnarlier tracks.
For 2017, the Operator will be available in three trim kits. At the entry level is the Operator, followed by the Operator DL, and the Operator Supreme. The Supreme level kit is essentially a replica of the bike raced by Fearon on the World Cup circuit.
For more info, visit www.konaworld.com.