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Exclusive:Greg Minnaar Interview

Photo:Kathy Sessler

How does it feel to have won the overall knowing that Dirt didn’t place you in their office sweep stake?!

Well I guess it makes me pretty happy to know you will probably pick me for one of those post it notes next year, at least one or two! Actually winning the third World Cup title is a bit of a relief after two seasons of injury and bad luck. Nice that the results reflected my form for a change!

Did you feel under a lot of pressure at Schladming, knowing the points were so close?

There’s always pressure in those situations, but I think it was harder for Sam because he had to make a perfect 1-1 of the semi’s and finals, and that’s always harder than aiming for a top 5. But yeah, there was pressure and it made me ride below my ability on that track.

You’ve been the most consistent rider this season, with a podium at every round, how did you do that?

With the World Cup it’s all about consistency to win the overall. You have to make the podium your goal each round and prepare properly for each race. I had a season long strategy to be at least 100 points ahead at the end of Canberra. I know which courses suit me more, and which suit Sam and the others. So you make a plan and stick to it as best as you can. Having a bike that you can count on is also really important.

Did the 5th place at the first round in Maribor make you think it would be a hard year?

That was target for me there, top 5, because the other guys had raced there last year and I hadn’t, so they were already up on me by the time training got going. Especially since Maribor was the last race of the year last season, for most of them, training started out fast as it was almost a continuation from 07 for them. For me I was just learning the track. So we knew Sam would be strong there, and I hoped for a top 5, and just scraped it in.

You seem to have had fun this year with the Syndicate, has it been a lot different than with Honda?

Yea it has been quite different. I had a lot of fun on Honda and I’m having a lot of fun with the Syndicate, I think things seem more serious on Honda then they actually were. I’m just really having a good time riding now that I’m healthy. And maybe thats change my attitude a little on and off the bike.

Was easy to swap to the VPP after riding the single pivot Honda?

Yea it was easy swapping on to the Santa Cruz VPP. For me the bike can ride all courses really well, from the rough Mount st Anne to pedally Canberra. It’s the perfect bike to be consistent in the World Cup

How do you feel about racing World Champs next year at Canberra after your win there this year, confident?
Confident? Not really, as everyone knows what that course is now and will go and do their homework, but certainly happy to have done well and to know that I can improve on that.

What was your favourite track this year?
Fort William is always a favourite, and I’m pretty stoked to have won 2 World Cups there now. But MSA has always been a dream of mine to win, so to finally do that is pretty awesome.

Is your shoulder completely fixed?
Yes, it’ spot on

Would you like to comment on the internet rumours about a move to Trek?
Don’t really know much about it. I think someone just made up stuff and put it on the Velo News website. This sort of stuff happens around this time of the year, and all I can tell you is that it’s not true. I’m contracted with Santa Cruz through to the end of 2009.

What is your plan for the off season, any other events lined up?
Looking forward to getting off the bicycle and on to my Motocross bike, the seasons been long and I’m looking forward to a bit of a break

Will you have any input to the Pietermaritzburg track in South Africa? Have you ridden the hill?

I hope to have some input into the track, I did hear that they have changed a lot of the track but I haven’t seen it yet.

You and Peaty have won the overall 3 times each; do you reckon you could catch Vouilloz with 5 wins?

It’s possible, but I don’t really think like that. I’ll be aiming to have another great season with the Syndicate next year, and see what hat brings me. I’ll be working as hard as ever.

Will we see the Borat suit in 2009?

The Borat is done, who knows what 2009 might bright bring. Maybe in 2010 I’ll rock the Borat for old time’s sake……wahah

 

Greg Minnaar Interview

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