Defending champion Greg Minnaar’s custom Santa Cruz V10 for this weekend’s World Championships

The GOAT's ride for Sunday's downhill World Championships men's elite race

Greg Minnaar's 2022 Santa Cruz V10

This is the custom-painted Santa Cruz v10 that Greg Minnaar will ride as he bids to defends his downhill world title in Les Gets, France, this weekend.

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The Santa Cruz Syndicate rider won a fourth world title in Val di Sole last year, at the age of 39, and his V10 will wear the number one plate in Les Gets as a result.

As you’d expect for the downhill legend, Minnaar’s Santa Cruz V10 has a few tricks up its sleeve for Saturday’s race, including a custom lower link on the Fox DHX2 Factory rear shock, prototype Shimano rear derailleur, a new set of pedals for the worlds and a smattering of signature Minnaar parts.

The Fox shock is complemented by a Fox 40 Factory fork, with suspension data gathered by a Motion Instruments data acquisition kit.

Burgtec provides the Ride Wide DH bar, with Minnaar’s signature Burgtec Bartender grips, while the 29in Reserve DH carbon wheels, spinning on Chris King hubs, are wrapped in a Maxxis Minion DHR II tyre at the back and Minnaar’s signature Assegai tyre on the front.

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Let’s take a closer look.

As reigning world champion, Minnaar’s bike sports the number one plate this weekend, fixed to his highly-tuned Fox 40 Factory fork, complete with data acquisition kit bolted in place. Greg uses 29in wheels in the front and back (rather than a mixed-wheel set-up) and an XL size frame.
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Minnaar is more than familiar with the Santa Cruz V10, having signed to the Syndicate team back in 2007 (to race on their bikes from 2008 and onwards). He’s since bagged himself three World Championship titles (to add to his other victory from 2003) and another overall World Cup series victory.
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After spotting a Fox shock laden with electronics on Greg’s bike partway through last season, we were expecting to see more of the same this weekend. Instead, Greg appears to be using his usual DHX2 coil shock but we’re sure there’s something pretty special going on with the internals.
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The lower link that drives the rear shock is machined and hasn’t been anodised, so is likely designed to alter the V10’s kinematics compared to the production bike. It’s also worth noting the cut-down bash ring that covers half of the chainring to help protect it during heavy bottom outs/accidental impacts.
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Greg’s a tall rider and is regularly playing with bar height. His mechanic, Lyle Hyslop, will raise and lower the bar height of the V10 depending on how steep the track is. Apparently bar height has increased for Les Gets compared to the last round of the World Cup in Mont Saint Anne, Canada.
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At the back of the bike is a prototype rear derailleur. It’s very likely it’s an early edition of the latest Shimano Saint derailleur. Shimano hasn’t updated the Saint groupset for a long time, so hopefully we’ll see this in production very soon.
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The Chris King hubs will have had any thick grease removed, replaced with thinner lubricant, and the bearings run in so they’re spinning as fast as possible.
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Just in case you weren’t sure who this Santa Cruz V10 belonged to.
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Minnaar (along with the rest of the Syndicate team) uses his signature Burgtec Bartender grips.
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Burgtec Ride Wide DH bars left at full width help to keep the V10 on track.
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The Santa Cruz Syndicate saddle comes from Burgtec, too.
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This little black box is a Motion Instruments Tracer Transceiver and is used as part of the Motion Instruments data acquisition kit, used to set up Greg’s suspension.
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The World Championships is a very special race, which is why many brands, including Crankbrothers, will produce special, one-off colours, just like these Mallet DH pedals in chrome.
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A little reminder that Minnaar won this prestigious event last year… at the age of 39.
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Another look at the custom lower link that drives the Fox DHX2 Factory rear shock.
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The Syndicate team use Santa Cruz’s Reserve DH carbon wheels, which sport a 31mm internal rim width.
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Minnaar uses a Maxxis Minion DHR II rear tyre out back and his signature, Assegai tyre, at the front.
Jack Tennyson / Our Media