South African rider Greg Minnaar become only the third rider to win a men’s downhill World Championship title on home soil in 2013 when he triumphed in his hometown of Pietermaritzburg, edging out American Michael Hannah by less than half a second. The pressure on Greg was particularly intense, as he was defending the title that he had won the previous year in Leogang-Saalfelden. He had also been crowned World Champion in 2003.
Over a long and illustrious career, Greg has also experienced great success in the World Cup series, with overall wins in 2001, 2005 and 2008, and overall runners-up spots in 2009 and 2010. He has appeared on a World Cup podium over 50 times, capturing 16 downhill wins and one 4X win. He was also crowned downhill champion of the NORBA points series in 2003 and 2004.
Born on 13th November 1981, GM first started cycling on a BMX at the age of four, but his real passion growing up was motocross. It wasn’t until the age of 12 that he began to ride mountain bikes, inspired by his parents decision to buy a bike shop in Pietermaritzburg, and he started downhill when he was 16.
His strongest qualities as a racer are his strength, determination, and, above all, consistency - during the 2008 World Cup series, Minnaar podiumed at five of seven events in the series, and finished fifth in the finals at Schladming to take the title by a comfortable margin.
- Age: 32
- Nationality: South Africa