For those of us who’ve championed the valley’s potential as a major summer destination for many years, the news that Santa Cruz have established their European headquarters in our town is very exciting indeed. It’s a move that’s set to elevate the profile of Morzine as a first rate MTB destination across the world.
As the name suggests, Santa Cruz Bicycles was founded in a garage in Santa Cruz, California in 1993. Always blazing trails and redefining the established sensibilities of mountain biking, the company now manufactures 16 models including a dedicated women’s range.
“Morzine in the summer is all about the riding, it makes sense for us to be here,” Santa Cruz Global Head of Marketing Will Ockleton told Source. “We needed a hub,” adds Loïc Delteil, European Media Coordinator. “Previously we’d all been working remotely. This joins the whole team together with a year-round base.”
But what does having the European HQ for Santa Cruz Bicycles in Morzine actually mean for our town? To begin with, there’s a big office space for the full European team, vacancies in which have been promoted locally. Things get much more exciting in the showroom (“which is not a shop!” Will points out), home to a carefully curated selection of both current and old bike models displayed in the style of a museum. With the current product line on display, buyers, distributors and shop owners from across Europe will head to Morzine to do business. “We hope to reinforce Morzine’s position at the centre of the bike community by introducing our bikes and our way of life to our dealers” explains Will.
But setting up an all-singing, all-dancing office and showroom in Morzine isn’t where the Santa Cruz story ends. There’s a true motivation to get the entire community involved, from the local kids club to testing sessions on the Pleney. There’ll be ride-outs for locals and holidaymakers with guides and photographers in attendance, while the Syndicate race team will relocate from California to Morzine on a permanent basis.
Some of the biggest names in MTB ride for the Santa Cruz team. Greg Minnaar, back-to-back World Championship winner and Morzine favourite, rides for the Santa Cruz Syndicate team, as does four-time World Cup champion Steve Peat. It’s riders of this caliber that we can expect to see on the streets and trails of Morzine this summer, and that’s all thanks to Santa Cruz.
More info: santacruzbicycles.com