It’s not what you do, it’s how you do it and who you do it with.
This is our core approach here at Astral, and our collaboration with the Kona Endurance and Adventure Team is a case-in-point.
The Kona Adventure Team lives and rides with that approach front and center. They hit up the country’s most epic races, rolling with a posse of friends, laughing all the way. Hell, sometimes they even bike-pack to and from the events themselves. This is behavior we can get behind.
If you’re somehow unaware of them, here’s a quick breakdown of the characters.
Barry Wicks – Ring Leader
Barry was racing world cup XC MTB and Cyclocross before he could legally drink and there’s probably never been a time when his car was worth as much as his bikes. He stepped away from world cup racing nearly a decade ago in order to focus on… bike riding. That’s right. Sick of missing fun trails for interval sessions he followed the path of the soul-rider. Now he cruises the globe in search of the best next ride. When pressed about his strategy by an interviewer after a recent gravel race win he summed up his approach saying, “I’m just glad to be out here.” Then headed out bikepacking with beers in his bottle cages. @wicknasty
Corey Wallace – Racer at Large
Corey may be one of the most prolific endurance athletes. Across multiple continents, the current – and three time – Solo 24 Hour Mountain Bike World Champion races cross-country, mountain bike stage races, epic bike packing routes, gravel events and more. His “training” for 24-hour races includes week-long bikepacking trips in the developing world and his “home visits” to Canada are known to include 2-3 races in a weekend. During the last two seasons he’s staged Fastest Known Time (FKT) efforts on the Annapurna circuit (His current FKT is well under 24 hours) as a fundraiser for the Nepal Cyclists. The training center he established now nurtures the future bicycling champions of Nepal.
Cory is currently in Nepal, with the country on lockdown for covid-19, he’s living a slowed down version of his life out in a remote location in the Himalayas. @wallacesworld
Becca Fahr – ‘Cross Crusher
Ironman Triathlete turned pro cyclocross racer, Becca is no stranger to suffering with a smile. Her serious season is the Fall, racing a full cyclocross program that includes domestic and European races. At 2019 USA Cycling Cyclocross Nationals, she finished a proud and hard-fought 2nd place. She spends the “off season” racing some of the burliest gravel races in the country. This will be her third season stepping into the wild schemes and shenanigans of the Kona Adventure crowd, but her first as a bona fide team member. @gofahr
Kerry Werner – Racer, Vlogger, Advocate
Kerry is one of the fastest and toughest cyclocrosser’s to come out of America in recent years. For over five years he’s been a hot favorite to win a USA national championship (or any ‘cross race in North America for that matter,) and he’s the current Pan American Champion. His preparation for a full campaign of world cup ‘cross racing in the fall includes top finishes at some of the continents toughest mountain bike stage races. and suggests one of the most important training secrets is “not worrying about stuff too much.”
He hosts a video-blog which inspires racers around the world, and also highlights the importance of using bikes for transportation, thus reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Stay tuned to see some of Kerry’s video work and to see what this small but mighty crew of adventures get up to later this year. @kerryw24
The team will be chomping at the bit to get outside in far-flung places once life gets back to normal post-Covid-19-lockdown. We’re proud to go along for the ride.
Photos: Patrick Means