Kona Process 153 CR/DL 29 - Bike check
I have always loved big wheeled Konas and for 2019 I have been given the opportunity to race aboard the best one they've made yet. Having ridden the aluminium version of this bike last year, I knew I'd get along just fine with this, its carbon big brother.
I ride an XL which I find fits my 6ft 3' frame perfectly. The short chain stays help keep the bike nimble.
Suspension is an all SRAM affair with a Lyrik fork up front and a Super Deluxe shock in the rear. I run 100psi and two volume tokens in the forks and 260psi with three volume tokens in the rear. No clicks of compression for me and rebound settings are in the middle of the spectrum.
The bike comes ready to race out the box but I have made a few changes to suit the race track. I have switched to a 30mm rise, 760mm long handlebar to help balance my body position. Clever tool storage in the form of OneUp's EDC system houses my tools, chainlink and a CO2 can in the steerer tube. I switched the brakes from the new SRAM Code supplied with the bike to the older SRAM Guide RE's which are my preferred brakes. I am trying organic pads but think I'll be ditching them soon and going back to sintered ones. Something people often note is my brake level angle, yes they are comfortable!
I run a Garmin to help me keep track of my day when out racing and to see if I'm about to suffer a heart attack. I also use Crankbrothers pedals which I love. Having recently learned to rebuild them (which is easier than you might think), I now ensure they always have fresh bearings.
The new 153 29er brings back alot of memories of my 2016 race bike, a Kona Process 111, a legendary bike in its own right. Amazingly, the new 153 despite being a much bigger bike is lighter by some margin. It is amazing how much Kona have progressed over the years and this new bike captures the fun spirit of the 111 with the flat out, white knuckle punching power of a full on enduro sled.
See you out there!