I’m based in Copenhagen. I’m mainly doing gravel/cx, MTB and bikepacking but I also (besides some random beaters and city bikes) own a fixie and a road bike which is not been used that much at the moment. Then I sometimes do bikepolo, alleycats and work as a messenger.
What does riding mean to you?
It forces me to be in the moment which I’m really not good at when not on a bike. It’s also a way to disappear from society, city life, feelings, overthinking, expectations and duties. I go ride when I’m frustrated, when I’m ecstatic, when I’m sad, when I’m comfortable, when I’m hungover etc.
It has become my indispensable tool to handle my endless restlessness.
It is my favorite way of being social and hanging out with other people.
When I’m (rarely) riding solo it forces all my subconsciously hidden feelings to come to the surface and forces me to deal with myself and actual being (which is tough). I want to be better at solo riding. Meaning I want to be better dealing with myself.
Nature and social life are definitely the most important things to me. That’s what cycling gives me.
What is your favourite set up?
Oh, depends on the day and the ride!
At the moment whenever I have time for cycling I’d prioritise my mountain bike, a hardtail NS Eccentric which I build a little over a year ago after many years of stubbornly taking my cross bike on the MTB trails meaning that a MTB and suspension wouldn’t be any different since I on my CX easily could follow the guys on MTBs. But I somehow saw the light – oh I loooooove my mountain bike.
But my all time favorite set-up must be my CX/gravel/touring bike, a Bombtrack Hook 2. It’s the perfect compromise between light, fast and comfortable, it’ll do fine on all kinds of roads, trails etc and will be the one I take on favourite and most important kind of ride – long rides on the backroads. It can do anything.
Do you think the environment is male dominated?
This is also a though one to put into words.
First of all nobody can deny the overload of males in the environment. But through the last couple of years at least since I did my entrance to it, I’ve seen more and more females/WTNB’s joining and I’ve seen and are still seeing the environment turning slightly into a less competitive and more and more social/get together thing. I don’t know which came first or if they’re coming hand in hand… (?!)
Secondly it’s a shame in races that where’s such a lack of females/WTNB’s. It makes the competition really poor and we most often can’t even fill up the podium. Also often the few competitors have to different level to actual compete. Through the many CX races I did for 4 years I can only remember 3 times having a real fight on the court all the way to the finish line. It’s a shame because it’s in races that I really improve my skills, courage and ability to push a little harder.
But most important; this environment is where I feel most as the human I am and not identified by my gender (or age btw). I’m just as welcome to join any kind of rides, activities etc as any others. Here we’re all just cyclist -defined by our fitness, experience, interests, discipline, way of being and other for the activity relevant stuff. What a freedom. I love the cycle environment.
Oh a last thing; a kind of a first world problem. I hatehatehatehate the comments like “wow how cool to see a female on the court”………………….. I get that it’s only meant to be nice and because it’s a rare view. But it gives me props for being a specific gender and/or brave for doing something unexpected (because of my gender) instead of props for my actual action.
I was so proud to see Fiona taking the win at TCNR last year. It’s history for sure! And it takes some serious guts to get that strong especially as a female according to science – which I do believe in but I also believe that culture and social norms have a big role in this topic which can be defeated. And she deserves all the respect in the world. But what about giving her the kudos instead of paying so much attention to her gender, it was never impossible physically for a female to take a win in such a race, ‘only’ a question of effort and time put into it (and the individual behind it – without mentioning the gender).
Nevertheless if you’re a male or female it’ll take shitload of time and effort to get to the top. Not denying that females in general will need more effort than men. But also some men will never get even close to the end of the peloton in such a race. The physics varies from individual. A female is never just a female.
I do hope to see more females/WTNBs in the environment later!
That I say now will be way easier said than done, I don’t want to sound like an asshole – I know where it all comes from (not inside the cycle environment I know – just for the record) and it’s not easy to change. But I often hear “irrational excuses” like “i’m (she) not fast enough – they’ll (guys) have to wait” but I can tell from having been riding with both parts, that she is faster. But assume herself being slow — guys can be slow too.
I hope females will be able to leave their insecurity behind and join some rides instead of telling themselves they aren’t good enough. Try it! I never felt unwelcome – even the one time where I really misjudged my fitness and went on the (too) fast team – I was new there, they knew, I felt bad and they waited (a little impatiently tho) and then we laughed.
Any riding plans for the future?
Ehhh, sooooo many. But my rides are often really spontaneously; long as shorter ones. I have too many routes on my ridewithgps account from fully detailed routes in Georgia to a brief idea of riding to a random spot on the French west coast. They’ll be ridden someday. Maybe. Maybe I go somewhere I never thought of instead, planned from one day to another.
But as every year I did plan a few tours in the Swedish backroads already and one through Denmark.
Then I think I’ll tour to Basel to ECMC. And I’m really keen on making it to CMWC in Bogota and do some weeks touring afterwards (but economics…) – bahhh I’ll make it happen somehow.
But my overall goal is to do some more solo touring, so I’ll aim for at least taking one night on my own each month.
Ride like a girl is a series of interviews with WTF (women *trans femme) riders from around the world. If you would like to be contributed drop us an email.