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Charlie Harrison Joins Santa Cruz in Development Role

Jan 20, 2023 at 3:03
by Ed Spratt  

Following the announcement of his retirement at the end of last year, Charlie Harrison has revealed that he will be using his skills and experience to help develop future bikes for Santa Cruz.

bigquotesI had this conversation with @joshmosiman at #camprev while listening to his story of stepping away from racing and then in turn, seeing what the Lord gave back to him, and it was so relatable to myself. Since stepping away from racing to pursue my ultimate career in life, I’ve been able to rediscover how much I truly do love riding mountain bikes. I didn’t leave racing with any inclination that there would be opportunities outside of racing, but after I quickly realized that I have so much love for the sport and still want to contribute to it, everything started falling into place. I’m very honored to be a part of the @santacruzbicycles team helping @kiran.mackinnon on the development side of things. Testing has always been something that I’ve greatly enjoyed, so I’m extremely grateful that I’ve found an outlet to help such an iconic brand develop bikes. It means the world to me that I’ve been able to find an awesome group of companies that want to be involved with Charlie Harrison even outside of the racing space. It’s been so pivotal to me having the realization that I can do bikes without the racing side of things, and I’ve been enjoying myself while riding more than I have since I can remember. Thank you so much to the brands that are part of this post retirement journey, it’s greatly appreciated I’m honored to be involved with you. Charlie Harrison

Author Info:
edspratt avatar

Member since Mar 16, 2017
3,304 articles

  • 71 6
 Lord Pon
  • 5 7
 only fans ?
  • 8 3
 So whats the equivalent punk-rock style brand these days? What made SC so unique was that they were this tiny brand but the bikes were so superior to others...Not sure anyone fits that bill today? Transition maybe but the bikes dont really standout as a league above others...
  • 4 2
 @wolftwenty1: excellent question. Let me know when you have an answer. Bike companies are forever so bland.
  • 6 1
 @panthermodern: Its a product of the times as well...all bikes were so bad then it was easier to stand out maybe? Now with the big brands having huge R&D budgets...just not sure anyone small can really make a better bike than the big guys...high-pivot bikes had a shot but they all stink it turns out. @brianpark - curious your take
  • 12 0
 Pon hub
  • 2 1
 @wolftwenty1: Marin. If you look at their bikes they don't follow the herd at all.
  • 9 1
 @wolftwenty1: Spot on. This same thing happened with cars. As technology made everything "better" it slowly took a lot of what was special about the cars out of the equation. Look at the Nissan GTR or the 3-series BMWs. Certainly faster, but not nearly as special as their 90's equivalents.

Santa Cruz bikes are 10000% "better" than they used to be, but they perhaps lost some of their soul along the way.
  • 3 2
 @ridesmoothbro: Funny you say it...considering the Mega as my next ride.
  • 4 1
 @rockandride6: 100% R32 Skyline was insane for the times...now the GTR is one of many...you're just kinda buying a brand/styling you like.

Thing is...who cares if Pon owns them? If the bikes are better good on Pon for continuing to invest and making a high caliber product - all the reviews say the bikes are amazing. Nice stuff is expensive...always has been, always will be.

I cant be the only one that has made the boutique bike mistake...lots of problems, limited support, finish is meh...
  • 3 0
 @wolftwenty1: its odd now that the smaller ‘bouquet’ brands for the higher end market offer what seems to be in many cases a better value than what we see with SC, Specialized, Trek, etc. Pole, Uno and Revel just off the top of my head offer better ‘value’ (it’s subjective) once you approach the 6k - 7k mark
  • 2 0
 @artistformlyknowasdan: thats a tough one. the boutique brands are never as polished IMO. Everything just works, is done well and engineered to high standards on the big brands...I wonder if the smaller brands are just willing to take less margin on the OE parts to get bikes out there.
  • 8 2
 @wolftwenty1: I most definitely think Santa Cruz is still one of, if not the top brand out there. I bought the new Megatower last year and have been absolutely blown away by the quality compared to some other brands I've owned. So much so that I went out and bought the new Tallboy the other week. I'm sold.

Someday I would like to be "that guy" and get a custom bike from a boutique brand, but I do think there's a difference between boutique and "small." I've been burned by small companies too many times.
  • 4 2
 @artistformlyknowasdan: A lot of those brands that offer better "value" don't have nearly the quality frames that the bigger brands do. The bigger brands spend an insane amount on R&D and design their own frames from the ground up. They also own (at least in the case of Santa Cruz) their manufacturing process so that they can better control the quality the entire way.

People seem to have latched onto solely the parts hung on a bike to gauge value...they almost treat the frame as an afterthought which I really don't get. It's the only part not replaceable.
  • 3 2
 @rockandride6: I agree 100% Spec, Trek, SC and even Pivot I'd argue finish and frame quality is so far above the medium and small brands its not even funny.
  • 4 0
 @wolftwenty1: prolly
1. Forbidden
3 maybe custom filet brazed steel hardtails
4. Contra

Shit: lots of cool underdogs to support. Lots of great bikes out there.
I’m on a transition spire and I don’t thinking’s punk, but I do think it’s way different in geometry and ride feeling, since not much in execution.
And even tho I raced against the bosses there way back, and have owned a couple of the bikes: I never did FEEEEL their marketing schhhtik…
  • 3 1
 @maximumradness: the PNW, cut-off flannel, jean short, Natty-Lite, slapstick doesn't appeal to you? lol.
  • 2 0
 @wolftwenty1: I wonder if it might go the other way also though. With so many bikes being good, technologies becoming more streamlined and patents on good bike technologies winding down or expiring it might open the doors for smaller companies to make bikes that are really good. I mean- look at how Transition jumped on the "horsey" link when they could and what that, some forward thinking on geometry and some clever marketing did for that brand?
  • 2 0
 @rockandride6: not sure how accurate the ‘quality’ piece tho I’d agree with r&d. I did do a lot of warrant stuff for trek and specialized products when working in shops. Giant on the other hand not nearly as much
  • 5 0
 @wolftwenty1: never as polished? As an example have you seen a Evil or Revel, in person? Sure the little storage boxes look nice but that won’t sway my decision. Also time spent in bike shops I can 100% tell you not everything is well designed and engineered by bigger brands.
  • 3 1
 'Im gonna get down on my knees and start praising dutch jeebus, I want to feel his pon-ness all over my face'
  • 2 0
 @kenoath: yeah, I’m pretty sure rough anti corporate things are the definition of punk.
  • 5 1
Add Guerrilla Gravity to this list IMO. Getting bigger but still rider focused and doing new and different things compared to most of the others.
  • 1 0
 Roskopp says they don’t got it anymore. Whatever “it” was.
  • 4 0
 @wolftwenty1: knolly, canfield, chromag, REEB!
  • 35 1
 The newly designed SC bikes will be blessed, no doubt...
  • 39 4
 The best part about designing Santa Cruz bikes is you only need to design one new bike, then copy paste in different travel and wheel configurations for 5+ years!
  • 23 0
 @Mugen: Don't be silly. There are colors to think about here.
  • 4 3
 @Mugen: tHeYr'e alL dIfFErenT!
  • 4 0
 ...and christened at Lourdes
  • 16 6
 He could be referring to this group of ‘free’ thinkers that often refer to their deity’s as Lord, Lord our Father and the Lord Baby Jesus? The group seems to be gaining some popularity in recent years in the United States of freedom, which appears to show reasonable correlation with their declining educational investments and their growing economic disparity between rich and poor.
But then again, there’s a good chance he’s referring to Star Lord?
  • 7 1
 @Monkeyass: the only book you need to read is the bible! At least that is what the theocrats want here. Unfortunately it is working.
  • 3 0
 @Monkeyass: yes, clearly just a US problem…
  • 7 3
 @kokofosho: thats ridiculous. No one in the us reads. Maybe of Jesus had a tiktok...
  • 1 0
 @Monkeyass: It's a Santa Cruz thing... gotta give Minnaar his due.
  • 2 0
 Does that make him a holy roller?
  • 4 1
 @Eatsdirt: is minnaar a god botherer? Please no…he can’t be
  • 30 0
 Who is this Charlie Harrison that Charlie Harrison speaks of? Asking for a friend…
  • 4 0
 Charles Barkley.
  • 10 0
 Allow myself to introduce... myself.
  • 2 0
 Charles In Charge
  • 2 0
Gooood !

f*cking Lord and Jesus that f*cked Christ from behind …. Loco in the brains ‘mericans

One more reason not to buy SC … the invisible man up in the sky …..
  • 15 0
 He will be relegated to "Charlie Work" around the office.
  • 12 0
 If Charlie Harrison does well enough in his development role, will the team name be changed to "Charlie Harrison Santa Cruz Racing Team"?
  • 3 0
 @Mugen: Just the Charlie Santa Cruz Racing Team as we seem to be on first name based after Henrique's team announcement
  • 15 2
 never owned that kind of bike, but their massive prices for an absolute crap spec has always intrigued me.
  • 16 12
 "I had this conversation with @joshmosiman at #camprev while listening to his story of stepping away from racing and then in turn, seeing what the Lord gave back to him,"

Which Lord? Lord Lucan, Screaming Lord Sutch or another one?
  • 5 5
 Lordi maybe?
  • 14 3
 Lord Helmet
  • 1 1
 @Muckal: The GOAT of lords.
  • 12 7
 I think he is referring to the one who impregnated a poor pure virgin, so he could have a son with magical powers who could tell everyone how great and mighty he is.
  • 5 1
  • 7 1
 Randy Marsh aka Lorde
  • 1 1
 Lord of War™. Thank you, Britney, for allowing the lord to provide. Amen.
  • 1 0
 @chacou: hahahahaha that was so good
  • 10 2
 Super cool. Congrats Charlie.
  • 8 0
 The Santa Cruz development team is faster than quite a few race teams...
  • 12 6
 Roskopp leaves, jesus juice joins. This is not a punk band anymore.
  • 1 0
 f*cking rights !

My thoughts exactly !

It’s going down …..
  • 9 4
 What does religion have to do with bikes? That's right, nothing...
  • 2 0
 Amazing choice by Josh at SC. All I want to know is can Charlie keep up with Kiran on the trails in Santa Cruz?
  • 3 0
 Charlie Harrison the hedge trimmer
  • 9 6
 Ah! The old jesus take the wheel approach. Always works. smh.
  • 2 0
 Seems like a great job. Paid to abuse and ride bikes but not having to deal with the crap that racing brings with it.
  • 4 1
 Yes and amen! shred hardie charlie!
  • 13 14
 But how will people know it is a SC bike without its horrible pastel paint job Even the guys that work at SC don't like the colorways of their bikes. Seems like every color has some sort of purple in it.
  • 3 1
 I remember when they were a skateboard brand
  • 9 11
 theyve never been a skateboard brand ya fool thats santa cruz skateboards, clues in the last word, like santa cruz bikes the clue is also in the last word.
  • 26 0
 I remember when before they were an unrealised idea of a geographical area in the mind of an early European seafarer
  • 3 0
 Santa Cruz Skateboards is indeed still a skateboard brand and was not part of the Pon buyout
  • 1 0
 @hhaaiirryy: I thought it was the same brand at the beginning? No?
  • 2 0
 @nvranka: Rob Roskopp co-founded Santa Cruz Bikes and rode for/ worked at Santa Cruz Skateboards.
  • 1 0
 @brisbike: ahh i see. I suppose i could have looked it up, so thank you!
  • 1 0
 @hhaaiirryy: upon further research I am eating crow. Hahahah
  • 1 0
 @brisbike: Incorrect, Rob still owns part of Santa Cruz skateboards. He talks about it on the PB podcast.
  • 1 0
 I thought he was going to be a fireman in California? Great job with great benefits. Pretty risky job though.
  • 2 0
 Maybe, could he develops better prices?
  • 2 2
 It’s Lord Dog, although that may change as Ryan Howard and Brendan Fairclough have filed a joint lawsuit.
  • 2 1
 Keep Santa Cruz Rad.
  • 7 1
  • 1 1
 @Bitelio: I've never owned one, but I like their color schemes.
  • 1 1
 When in doubt, Charlie out.
  • 1 0
 Jack moir on IbiS?
  • 1 1
 Moir is a washed out retired guy ….
  • 1 1
 #panicrev. Been with my son to a couple MX camps. Great organization.

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