MTB > 2006 NORBA Round 05: California > Race Results
MTBU.S.A.July 20, 2006
NORBA Series Downhill Round 2006 Round 05: California

Minnaar Crashes At NORBA #5 But Still Takes 8th

Team G-Cross Honda rider Greg Minnaar (RSA) recovered from a crash in the final of Round 5 of the NORBA series, to take 8th place and to move up two more places in the overall standings. The 5th round was held at the famous Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Northern California, on a short and dusty track made very slippery with its numerous off camber traverses. The weekend was actually held as the relocated US National Championships, and the finals were one event, with two results. One set of results, issued on Sunday July 16, excluded all non-American riders and these were the US National Championship results. The results issued today included the international and American riders and form the results for Round #5 of the US National Series.

Greg Minnaar (Team G Cross Honda)

Greg Minnaar (Team G Cross Honda)

During training Greg focused on trying to be as smooth as possible on the short course, which was not going to be very forgiving to rider errors. The course changed every run and had the deepest ruts of all courses this year. It was laid out on an open hill side and had many awkward traverses across the hill and ended with a very fast section towards the finish line.

In the semi final things didn't go well for the 24 year old South African. Greg rode the top sections well but half way down slipped off the narrow path and fell down the hillside. Greg came to a rest some way from the track and though he tried to get back on the bike and regain race pace, the section was on a rise so it took time to get back up to speed, eventually losing around 10 seconds and therefore a lot of places on this short course.

In the final, things were looking good until Greg approached a rutted out corner under brakes and his rear wheel skipped out of the rut and crossed the bike up. Greg regained control momentarily but then the rear wheel washed out again and he was down. After getting back on the bike he gave it everything to the finish line, and eventually came in 8th.

Greg Minnaar (Team G Cross Honda)

Greg Minnaar (Team G Cross Honda)

#28 Greg Minnaar (8th Place)
"Stupid crashes this weekend. The bike was feeling great but I just had a hard time with the blown out course and keeping the speed up without a lot of risk. Many riders crashed this weekend so I don't feel so alone, but I would like to have finished on the podium for the team. I had an amazing pit set up this weekend thanks to Honda America, and everyone did a great job, I just wished I could have stayed upright in the final."

Team Director Martin Whiteley
"A disappointing day for the team and Greg. It's the nature of the sport when you push to the limits, especially on such dusty off camber courses, that you risk losing grip. This happened today. The training was also very strange with no training on Saturday, the day before the event, which doesn't give a rider the best preparation for racing at this level, especially on a course that changed nearly every run. Two more NORBA events to go next month, including the obligatory finals, and we're still looking good for the overall, so we'll be out there fighting."

NORBA Series Downhill Round 2006 Round 05: California

Qualifying Results
1 Amiel Cavalier (Giant/SRAM/RockShox)
2 Andrew Neethling (Mongoose Hyundai)
3 Cody Warren (Haro Bikes)
4 John Kirkcaldie (Team Maxxis USA)
5 Luke Strobel (Downhill Zone/Turner)
34 Greg Minnaar (Team G Cross Honda)
Final Results
1 Amiel Cavalier (Giant/SRAM/RockShox)
2 Jared Rando (Giant Michelin)
3 Des Curry (ODI/Smith/Romic)
4 Ben Bell (Yeti/Fox Factory Racing)
5 Andrew Neethling (Mongoose Hyundai)
6 Duncan Riffle (Honda Iron Horse)
7 Ryan Finney (WTB/Fox)
8 Greg Minnaar (Team G Cross Honda)
9 Rich Houseman (Yeti/Fox Factory Racing)
10 Duncan Riffle (Honda Iron Horse)

Related Links

· MTB - NORBA Mountain Bike Downhill World Cup
· U.S.A.

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