Meet a Team Rider: Stephanie Dietze
Being the only woman on the KH Factory Team doesn’t bother Stephanie at all. In fact, she’ll be the one keeping the boys under control during roadtrips and adventures. While she loves hiking up mountains and camping at the summit as much as she loves riding them down, she likes to push herself to overcome psychological barriers and constantly improve her riding. Here’s what she’s been up to this year.
Hi Steph! Looks like you’ve had a busy riding season.
Ha, indeed. This was my second summer working as a freelancer, so I could take time off for lots of muni adventures, camping, wilderness and nights under the stars. I started the season early in Italy as part of a fun camp at Lake Garda, released a freestyle video, went riding in the Bellunesi Dolomites, took part in Salzkammergut Trophy, Europes biggest muni downhill race, and went on a trip to Iceland shortly after. There were fun training sessions at bikeparks in Germany with Lutz and another trip to the Dolomites (my favorite mountains by far) in September. As I am writing this, I am on my way to Patagonia, Argentina.
So last year was just as busy for you?
2014 has been one of my most active mountain unicycling years. I got to travel to a lot of cool places in the world, got to meet a bunch of lovely people and made so many new friends. After travelling to Tenerife on the Canary Islands, Moab (yes!) and the Karwendel Alps as well as the Dolomites, the highlight of the year definitely was my journey to Unicon 17 in Montreal and to British Columbia afterwards. Ryan Kremsater and his family were the most amazing hosts, I got to ride the famous wood structures in the North Shores and in and around Whistler. A dream came true. After that summer, I finished the season in Innsbruck with David Weichenberger, Lutz Eichholz and Gerald Rosenkranz by conquering the last summit of the season. Finally, Scott Wilton and I went to Poland for Muni Race 2 and I got to check out the downhill race track for UNIOEC in Italy this year.
I am not a big fan of competitions, which is just a personal thing. That said, I can enjoy the rush you only feel during a race. Last year, I was glad to be one of the eight women competing in the Downhill Final at the World Championships in Montreal. I also got some age group medals in Uphill (1st), Cyclocross (2nd) and Crosscountry Elite (3rd).
Fun fact about you?
I have been on one mountain bike ride in my life. In pretty flat terrain. And found it very difficult.
What do you like about being in the KH Team?
Kris is a pioneer of off-road unicycling and still one of the best riders in the world. He is my role model not only when it comes to riding, but also for his humble and kind personality, as well as the philosophy behind his business. The KH Factory Team consists of great riders, both skill- and personality-wise, which is why I am even more honored to be part of it for the fourth year in a row. By now, the KH Team riders have all become close personal friends (or have my friends become Team Riders?) and I think we all motivate each other in a healthy way.
Anything else you’d like the world to know?
Adventure is what you make it.
Thank you Stephanie. Enjoy Argentina and stay safe!
Photos: Iceland by Lutz Eichholz, Wood structures in British Columbia by Ryan Kremsater, Moab by Spencer Hochberg, Scree field in the Dolomites by Lutz Eichholz