If we put all our collective brains together at Kona to figure out who most embodies what we love about bikes, we’d be hard-pressed to find someone that fits the bill better than Joonas Vinnari. Joonas picked up his first Kona 20 years ago with ambitions to have a career in freeriding. The scene was small in his country of Finland, but his dedication to going big was not. He pulled inspiration from the old New World Disorder films and embodied the freeride lifestyle he saw in the movies. Afterall, what’s not to like about drinking beer and freeridng all day long?
He had the talent and the drive to make serious moves, but along the way found a new passion: filmmaking. Our European marketing team began giving him product support and hiring him to shoot projects for Kona. The films Joonas made were more than just shredits. They were heavy on creativity and relied on proper storytelling. He was ahead of his time.
Fifteen years later and Joonas is still making films for Kona. In fact, he’s our head filmmaker, editor, and director of some of the best movies we’ve ever made. Having the skills to be a professional rider in front of the camera gave him a leg up on how to excel behind it, too. He’s our lone ambassador from Finland, has an unparalleled sense of humor, loves a good nekkid sauna, and can still ride like he’s 18 with nothing to lose.