- Covid got hold of the greatest downhill racer of all time
- South Africa’s Greg Minnaar is spending time home, healing
- Minnaar is hoping to regain full fitness
for the upcoming World Cup racing season
The greatest downhill mountain biker is dealing with Covid consequences.
Pietermaritzburg’s Greg Minnaar is a mountain biker who defies statistics. Although he is a multiple world champion, and the winningest downhill racer of all time, the tall KZN rider's longevity is perhaps his most enduring attribute.
In a cycling discipline that has enormous consequences, downhill racing careers are short. Rider injuries are frequent and serve. Despite this, Minnaar has been an elite level downhill racer since his late teens.
This year, he turns 40. And last year, he was still winning races, against the very best downhill mountain biker racers - many of them, little more than half his age.
Faster than anyone else, into his fourth decade
Where most of his rivals have retired more than a decade ago, Minnaar remains unquestionably competitive and a podium threat in every race he enters. But South Africa’s best mountain biker, finds himself now managing a Covid recovery, as he prepares for the UCI World Cup season.
Minnaar travelled to Europe a while back and contracted Covid-19. Although he has stated that symptoms peaked at a mild case, he has not been able to resume normal training, despite being two weeks post-Covid.
Advised to keep a low heart rate, Minnaar is in KZN, recovering. Between doctors and his trainer, he is waiting to sufficiently heal, before resuming peak training intensity.
The UCI downhill World Cup series is scheduled to start in late May, at Fort William, Scotland. This is a venue where Minnaar has proven nearly unbeatable in the past, with the Santa Cruz Syndicate rider having secured five wins at the testing Scottish track.