21 nov 2017

Conor MacFarlane: 2017 Season Review

“The second half of 2017 was a lot better than the first for me!!  After staying injury free for a solid 5 years, my back-to-back injuries were quite a shock. I was therefore off the bike for the longest I’ve ever been since I started riding!  Since I got back on the bike, I have been steadily progressing and getting back into competition shape. There remains a little bit of confidence to be gained back, but I would say I’m not too far off 100%.”

“I was back on the bike for about a week before I headed over to Europe for Les Gets, Crankworx. I probably wouldn’t have competed with my body the way it was, but I had booked flights before my second injury. I figured I might as well go and spend as much time on the bike to get used to it again. I didn’t do much competing at Crankworx, but I did shoot a short video of my first week in Europe riding some of the bike parks.” (VIEW HERE)

“I headed to Crankworx Innsbruck as well, still not competing in much, but it was good to be there and socialize at the events. Nico Vinks Loosefest in Belgium was the next big event on the calendar six weeks later, so I was feeling a lot better on the bike by then. It is always one of the highlights of the year; 50-98 foot jumps always get the heart racing and puts a huge smile on your face each time you get to the bottom!” (VIEW HERE)

“Loosefest is mainly a media focused event with no placings. There were five videos produced over the week and plenty of photographers there from magazines/freelance.  It always makes for a way more chilled event not having placings and it is definitely one of my favorites of the year!”

“Before heading to Canada, I stopped by the UK for a few weeks to shoot with Ian Lean and ride a few of my mate’s local spots. Whistler Crankworx in Canada was another flop for me. Two punctures and a broken wheel in the EWS (still the most fun I have had at an EWS though!). I then got sick along with the rest of my flat and was bed ridden on and off for the rest of Crankworx. Enough was enough so I went home early.”

“Just before Crankworx, I shot a video in Squamish for Full Speed Ahead, which was pretty well received. Most of my videos have at least a few big moves as that is my style, but this one was pretty chill. It focuses mainly around talking about my injuries and dealing with recovery, plus how I don’t throw down on a daily basis and that often a day’s riding will be pretty chill. I have had a few people comment at events over the years about wanting to see certain tricks and flips, thinking that I do them every day. With this in mind, I really wanted to communicate the fact you can’t ride like that every single day.” (VIEW HERE)

As soon as I got home to New Zealand, my confidence started returning in leaps and bounds! Riding what I know and having everything I needed - trick jumps, big jumps, DH and trail riding – was what I needed from the start. My whole focus while I was at home was to get ready for Redbull Rampage and get my confidence and skills back up as high as possible before the big event! During my prep for Rampage, I filmed a video with Scott Robb, for POC and FSA, documenting the process and talking a lot about my injury, preparation, etc and I personally think it turned out well!” (VIEW HERE). Rampage didn’t end up going quite as well as I had hoped. I crashed and knocked my head which is an injury that I take very seriously! I had an awesome time at the event though and walked away to ride another day, so I can’t really complain.”

“During this year, I still managed to get a few magazine pages despite the lack of time on the bike. I got a Spoke Magazine cover, 4 two-page photos in Australasia magazines and a few smaller photos supporting articles. There are a few feature stories coming out soon as well; one in a UK magazine about Rampage and one on an adventure ride here in NZ in an Australia magazine.”

“I am back in NZ now and looking forward to a good summer! I have plenty planned to keep me busy and a lot carried forward from last year. One of my main projects for the summer will be to build more freeride features to include with what I already have to film: a Raw film for RedBull of which I am pretty stoked for!”


  • Conor FSA Canada (7 of 17)
  • Conor Macfarlane11
  • Conor FSA Canada (17 of 17)