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Greg Minnaar

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Greg Minnaar

Greg Minnaar
Greg Minnaar at Val d'Isère (2012 World Cup 6th round)
Personal information
Full name Greg Minnaar
Nickname GM, The Fresh Prince of Big Air
Born (1981-11-13) 13 November 1981
Pietermaritzburg, South Africa
Height 1.90 m (6 ft 3 in)
Weight 87 kg (192 lb)
Team information
Current team Santa Cruz Syndicate
Discipline MTB
Role Rider
Rider type DH & 4X
Professional team(s)
1999
2000
2001–2002
2003
2004–2007
2008–
Local bike shop
Animal Orange
Global Racing
Haro Lee Dungarees
Team G Cross Honda
Santa Cruz Syndicate
Major wins
NORBA Champion (2 Wins)
UCI DH World Champion (3 Wins)
UCI DH World Cup Overall (3 Wins)
Infobox last updated on
02 Sept 2013

Greg Minnaar (born 13 November 1981 in Pietermaritzburg) is a South African World Champion mountain bike racer competing in downhill cycling. He competes in the NORBA and Mountain Bike World Cup points series races, in the Elite Downhill and Four Cross events.

Career

Greg first started to get noticed as a world class downhill racer at the age of 17, in 1999, racing select World Cups (including one in his home country of South Africa, in Stellenbosch) on a local shop team, aboard a Kona Stab Dee-Lux bike with a Marzocchi Monster T. fork. In 2000, he was picked up as a junior by British international team Animal Orange, which used Orange frames (222 for downhill and Ms. Isle for dual slalom) and RockShox suspension. That year Greg podiumed at a World Cup points series race for the first time.

The following two years Greg rode for the Global Racing team, aboard similar bikes to the previous years', and on this team, at the age of 19, he won the overall World Cup points series in the Elite downhill. In 2003 Greg switched to the Haro Lee Dungarees team, which used Intense designed and built DHR frames for the dowhill and their own short travel Werx trailbike frames for Four Cross, with Manitou suspension. It was aboard this team that, at the age of 21, Greg became World Champion of downhill.

In 2004, Greg was offered a spot on Team G Cross Honda, which used one-off internally geared frames made by Honda, with a Showa suspension. He accepted and stayed for four years, winning his second World Cup points series overall victory in 2005. The 2007 season ended on a bittersweet note with a dislocated and fractured shoulder early in his winning World Championship final run although Greg got back on the bike to salvage a painful 4th place finish. In addition, Greg was forced to switch teams yet again when Honda pulled out of the sport and he chose the Santa Cruz Syndicate team, alongside riders Steve Peat, Nathan Rennie, and Josh Bryceland for the 2008 season.

Championships

UCI Downhill World Champions

Minnaar has won the UCI Downhill World Championship three times - in 2003, 2012 and 2013. He has finished second three times (2004, 2006 and 2009) and taken the bronze three times (2001, 2005 and 2010).

Downhill World Cup

Minnaar has been crowned Downhill World Cup champion three times (2001, 2005 and 2008) for winning the Mountain Bike World Cup points series. He was also crowned Downhill World Champion in 2003 for winning the season ending event. He has also done well in the Four Cross event, with one win in the 2003 World Cup points series, in Fort William, Scotland, and a fourth place finish at the 2005 World Championships.

In the 2008 World Cup, Minnaar podiumed at every one of the seven events in the series, taking the win at Fort William, Mont-Sainte-Anne and Canberra. This gave him a comfortable lead going into the finals at Schladming, Austria, where he placed fifth and clenched his overall lead to take the well-deserved title.

In 2009 World Cup series, Minnaar took first place at Pietermaritzburg South Africa, Fort William Scotland and Bromont Canada. He also came 6th at La Bresse in France, 3rd at Vallnord in Andorra, Maribor in Slovenia and in Schladming Austria. Greg also came 22nd in Mont-Sainte-Anne leaving him with a 2nd place overall. In the World Championships at Canberra Australia he lost 1st place to his team mate Steve Peat by 0.05seconds

NORBA

Minnaar has twice (2003, 2004) been crowned the champion of the NORBA points series.

Palmarès

1998
1st DH, South African National Mountain Biking Championships
1999
1st DH, All African National Mountain Biking Championships
2000
5th DH, UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Vail, USA
2001
1st DH, UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Kaprun, Austria
1st DH, UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Series Overall
3rd DH, UCI Mountain Bike & Trials World Championships, Vail, USA
2002
3rd 4X, UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Telluride, USA
2003
1st DH, UCI Mountain Bike & Trials World Championships, Lugano, Switzerland
1st NORBA, Series Overall
2004
2nd DH, UCI Mountain Bike & Trials World Championships, Les Gets, France
1st NORBA, Series Overall
2005
1st DH, UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Series Overall
3rd DH, UCI Mountain Bike & Trials World Championships, Livigno, Italy
2006
2nd DH, UCI Mountain Bike & Trials World Championships, Rotorua, New Zealand
3rd DH, UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Series Overall
2007
4th DH, UCI Mountain Bike & Trials World Championships, Fort William, Scotland
rode half the race with a broken scapular and dislocated shoulder
2008
1st DH, UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Series Overall
podium every single round
2009
1st DH, UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Pietermaritzburg, South Africa; Fort William, Scotland; Bromont, Canada
2nd DH, UCI Mountain Bike & Trials World Championships, Canberra, Australia
2010
2nd DH, UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Series Overall
3rd DH, UCI Mountain Bike & Trials World Championships, Mont-Sainte-Anne, Canada
2011
2nd DH, UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Pietermaritzburg, South Africa
1st DH, UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Fort William, Scotland
1st DH, UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, La Bresse, France[1]
2012
1st DH, UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Pietermaritzburg, South Africa [2]
1st DH, UCI Mountain Bike & Trials World Championships, Leogang, Austria
2013
1st DH, UCI Mountain Bike & Trials World Championships, Pietermaritzburg, South Africa
3rd DH, UCI Mountain Bike World Cup, Series Overall

See also

  • Steve Peat, Minnaar's team mate on the Syndicate Team.

References

  1. ^ "Union Cycliste Internationale". Uci.ch. Retrieved 2014-05-17. 
  2. ^ "Pietermaritzburg World Cup 2012 - Greg Minnaar wins!". Pinkbike. Retrieved 2014-05-17. 

External links

  • Official website
  • Official siteTeam Santa Cruz Syndicate
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