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Pro bike: Greg Minnaar's customized Santa Cruz V10

Greg Minnaar Santa Cruz 2022
(Image credit: Santa Cruz Syndicate)

Greg Minaar continued to prove that he is the greatest of all time with his fourth World Champs win last year, to celebrate the Santa Cruz Syndicate has customized his 2022 Santa Cruz V10 with a suitable stunning paint job.

The win last year might have surprised a few people, after all it was eight years since Minnaar's last World Champ win – although he did get second in 2015. The 39 year old South African won his first World Championships in 2003, besting legends  Mickael Pascal and Fabian Barel. A win that also ended the reign of Nicolas Vouilloz, who had dominated the World Champs since 1995. 

Yet in 2021 Minnaar put in a heater of a run in and secured a fourth World Championship at Val di Sole. Nobody doubted he didn't still have the pace, his World Cup performances have proved that, but to win the biggest race of the year was admittedly an unexpected yet wonderful thing to see. 

Greg Minnaar Santa Cruz 2022

The design uses a rainbow and gold design across the frame (Image credit: Santa Cruz Syndicate)

Greg has had his fair share of custom-painted bikes over the years, although no doubt this will be one that he will be particularly proud to ride. The custom paint has a pattern featuring subtle rainbow strips and gold-themed color details. Minnaar's name is detailed in the rainbow colors on the seat tube. 

Greg Minnaar Santa Cruz 2022

Minnaar's name in the rainbow stripes on the seat tube (Image credit: Santa Cruz Syndicate)

Greg will continue to ride the Santa Cruz V10, the bike lineage that he has ridden since 2008. Santa Cruz's best downhill mountain bike is dramatically different from the one Greg rode back then. The XL frame and 29er wheels mean results in a far roomier cockpit and a massive wheelbase that's far more suited to Greg's 1.88m build.

Greg Minnaar Santa Cruz 2022

Emblazoned in the heart of the bike is a 2021 World Champs commemoration (Image credit: Santa Cruz Syndicate)

The Syndicate component sponsors stay relatively unchanged for 2022 so the bike will be kitted out with much the same componentry as the bike Greg he won the world champs on. Fox takes care of the suspension, a Fox 40 upfront and a Fox DHX2 shock, and Shimano's Saint drivetrain and brakes handle the stop and go. It's hard to see in these pictures but it appears that he is still running the mystery unmarked rear derailleur that could be seen on his bike last year.

Greg Minnaar Santa Cruz 2022

Greg is a tall guy and likes a long rear end, with the flip-chip set in the long setting (Image credit: Santa Cruz Syndicate)

Burgtec continues to provide the finishing kit and the bike will roll on a lux combo of Reserve rims and Chris King hubs which will be fitted with Maxxis tires. The big sponsor change is that Fox is now onboard for clothing and in charge of kitting Greg out with his rainbow-striped race kit for the 2022 season.

Greg Minnaar Santa Cruz 2022

I think we can all agree, Minnaar wears the rainbow stripes well (Image credit: Sven Martin)

The Syndicate has had a bit of a reshuffle for 2022 but has a solid roster that is guaranteed to offer some exciting racing. Laurie Greenland moved over from Mondraker and the child-prodigy Jackson Goldstone will be racing at the Junior level. Nina Hoffmann will be contending the Elite Woman's title too. While all these riders already have a wealth of racing experience, they are under the guidance of two of the greatest downhill racers ever. Teammate Greg Minnaar who will be racing his 22nd World Cup season and Steve Peat who fills a coaching role on the team.

We will be looking forward to seeing Greg's new bike in action at the first round of the World Cup in Lourdes this weekend.

Tech Specs: Greg Minaar's Santa Cruz V10

  • Frame: Santa Cruz V10 
  • Fork: Fox 40
  • Shock: Fox DHX2 
  • Drivetrain: Shimano Prototype derailleur, Shimano Saint cranks
  • Brakes: Shimano Saint, XTR levers 
  • Wheels: Santa Cruz Reserve DH 
  • Hubs: Chris King 
  • Front tire: Maxxis Assegai
  • Rear tire: Maxxis Minion DHR II 
  • Cockpit: Burgtec handlebars, stem, and saddle
Graham Cottingham
Senior reviews writer, Bike Perfect

Graham is all about riding bikes off-road. Based in Edinburgh he has some of the best mountain biking and gravel riding in the UK right on his doorstep. With almost 20 years of riding experience, he has dabbled in downhill, enduro and, most recently, gravel racing. Not afraid of a challenge, Graham has embraced bikepacking over the last few years and likes nothing more than strapping some bags to his bike and covering big miles to explore Scotlands wildernesses. When he isn’t shredding the gnar in the Tweed Valley, sleeping in bushes or tinkering with bikes, he is writing tech reviews for Bike Perfect and the muckier side of Cyclingnews 


Rides: Canyon Strive, 24 Bicycles Le Toy 3, Surly Steamroller

Height: 177cm

Weight: 71kg