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From the Top: Rob Roskopp


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From the Top: Rob Roskopp



Loyalty is everything for me. People I work with understand that and respect it. It's a big part of success - without it, you have nothing.




http://lp3.pinkbike.org/p1pb6168857/p1pb6168857.jpg You were a pro skateboarder with Santa Cruz when it was the most wanted skateboard brand on the planet. What motivated you to jump from the gravy train into a risky proposition like making mountain bikes?


Towards the end of my skating career I found the bicycle again. I bought my first mountain bike in 1987 and starting riding with friends. By the end of the ‘eighties, I started riding much more and then entered my first race in 1990. I really caught the mountain biking bug and began competing more and more. At that time in my life, I had to figure out what I was going to do. I went back to school at night and worked at Santa Cruz Skateboards during the day. My partner Rich Novak had become my mentor over the years, so I had learned almost every aspect of the business. I got Rich into mountain biking too, and he asked me one day if I thought making Santa Cruz Bicycles would be of any interest for me. It seemed like a good idea, so I did a bunch of research. Full suspension bikes were in the beginning stages at that time, so it seemed like the best way to enter the market. From there, I brought Mike Marquez into the project and we found a local bike designer by the name of Tom Morris(creator of the Tazmon, our first model). We had Control Tech make the first 100 bikes and we were off. Right as we received the first bikes, Hans Heim came on board (Keith Bontrager’s former partner) and as they say, "The rest is history."




http://ep3.pinkbike.org/p1pb6168857/p1pb6168857.jpg The Tazmon was a convincing first effort for the fledgling bike maker. - Santa Cruz photo



I remember taking the first production bikes into local shops and seeing the look on some of the dealers' faces when they saw the name 'Santa Cruz' on the down tube. They would comment, "Don't you guys make skateboards?"

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http://ep3.pinkbike.org/p1pb6168857/p1pb6168857.jpg Santa Cruz operated from this modest industrial complex next door to the skate company for nearly two decades. - Santa Cruz photo



http://lp3.pinkbike.org/p1pb6168857/p1pb6168857.jpg Santa Cruz milestones: The Bullit (top)

was one of the first long-travel trailbikes -

later to become 'all-mountain.' The original

Blur LTc used carbon for superior strength

rather than solely for its weight advantage -

the V10 would mirror that philosophy. The

carbon Tallboy was SC's first 29er, followed

by the longer travel LTc - both were

successes from the get-go. The Bronson was

the brand's first 27.5" wheel bike. The all

carbon V10c was long-awaited by DH racers.



http://ep3.pinkbike.org/p1pb6168857/p1pb6168857.jpg Santa Cruz moved into its new factory across town in 2013. The move allowed SC to improve the flow of the assembly and shipping tasks and to bring all of its operation under one roof. - Santa Cruz photo


http://ep3.pinkbike.org/p1pb6168857/p1pb6168857.jpg Two World Champions take some time to wrench for a pair of future champs



The Syndicate is a family. I always treated it that way - it works.



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