Talking Gravel Racing and Life with Peter Stetina

Talking Gravel Racing and Life with Peter Stetina

Gravel riding continues to grow in popularity. Peter Stetina, one of the top cyclists in the sport, explains why gravel racing and the gravel community is so special and unique.

Peter Stetina was an accomplished World Tour road cyclist before embracing gravel racing in 2019. He quickly established himself as one of the best in the sport, winning Utah’s Crusher in the Tushar, the 2021 Belgian Waffle Ride San Diego and the inaugural Leadboat, which is the combination of two arduous endurance races for a total of 250 miles over two days. 

In 2020, he set the course record on the infamous White Rim Trail in Moab, Utah. Stetina, son of U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame inductee Dale Stetina, joins Dirk to discuss the ever-evolving sport of gravel racing, his successful 2021 season, self-coaching and van life.  

Stand-Out Quotes

  • “The cool thing about these gravel races is getting to visit other communities and landscapes, and Iceland is like an alien planet on Earth.” 
  • “Overall, I think it’s the lifestyle change that evolves into training. Gravel is highlighted by — instead of robotic bike racers that follow a very strict training plan — it’s people who ride bikes who happen to be fast or competitive and go after these big adventures.”
  • “I really have to build my training plan around my lifestyle, which is constantly evolving. The training is only part of it, but I probably focus on training more than my other gravel contemporaries.”
  • “[Van life] is the alternative team bus. I’m traveling to these races and there’s so much equipment. And especially during COVID when flying was weird, I just invested in this big, dumb van to go places and then all of a sudden it just became this freedom. You’re not adhering to the itinerary of airline schedules and the stress around that comes with it. Instead, you have a little moving apartment with all your comforts.” 

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