My name is Katia Greifsmühlen, although I’m found under the name Wassermann in all social media (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat and Strava), which is one of the family names of my mother, that I adopted for it’s also my sign of the zodiac in German. I am 41 years old. I live now in Hamburg in Germany. Originally I come from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, where I was born and spent my childhood.Tell us a bit about how you got involved into cycling and how is your approach to cycling now.
It is a long story and a very long process. Living next to the beach in Leblon, Rio, I spent most of the time after school surfing waves. My first bicycle was a single speed with brakes (no fixie). One of my friends invited me to cycle to the mountains and so I did. I almost died with the +25% inclination and this happened, because I didn’t have a mountain bike, according to him. The astonishing view, the feeling of freedom, the feeling of conquering, the effort, the wind in the face when going downhill, all this fascinated me and I begged my father for a mountain bike. That was the beginning. I love speed too and my father used to have 3 motorcycles, which my father had to sell, because my mother thought it was a bad example for me. But when my friend came up with a road bike I needed to have one too. I got 2 with my own means and this is a funny and very long story. But after 2 road bikes I needed a real bike – an Italian one, and I got a Bianchi. So I started to cycle with my friends, going fast and faster – there weren’t many people that practiced cycling back then – since Brazil is the country of soccer/football and we kind of organized rides and events by ourselves. Everything was fun and games till I had to go the college. I changed from Literature to Sports Sciences and finally to Communications. However, the passion remained and, although I didn’t have much time to practice cycling as I wanted, I managed it somehow, waking up at 3 or 4 and going out to ride. Besides, I have always been very active my whole life, so I’ve always had a relatively good condition, also through fitness, what I have practiced for a very long time and has been a “subpassion”. I travelled very often and once I met husband in Kiel, Germany, for the first time – also a cycling freak. When I moved over, I decided once for all to do what I deeply love. So, with his support I started to learn and train consistently. I like kind of longer distances and mountains (I grew up among them!) So, I’m always taking part in cycling events like granfondos or bike marathons. Besides, I love Italy so much and everything there. My grandfather was Italian and I loved the way he faced life. I love the geography, the landscape, the people, the passione Italians have for everything that they do, the love for aesthetics, the food, the wines; Italian cycling and the Italian bikes.
I also work in the bike industry and at FC Sankt Pauli as trainer. FC Sankt Pauli has been continuously growing into the one of most important cycling clubs in Northern Germany and, I hope, one day, in whole Germany. I do appreciate the club’s philosophy, which is also not only seen in the statutes but, the most important of all, it is implemented and acted out: It is about the love for cycling and the respect for the human being, whatever their gender, religion, origin, appearance, social class, age, etc. is. The motto: Inside of every person there is a hero.
I think I could relinquish everything, except cycling. It’s pure passion.
What Basso bike are you riding now (model, color, groupset, wheels).
Describe the bike in 3 words.
Only in 3? Fantastic (better: Wahnsinn!), SUPERLATIVE, PERFECT.
What do you like about your Basso bike?
Like a diamond the bike has many facets. It’s very aggressive, though still comfortable, a sensational climber, perfect “descender”, incredibly responsive and reactive, nimble, it’s like a race motorcycle with the difference that I must pedal. It’s also very fast, although I know this depends more on the form of the day, but like Germans say: wenn schon, denn schon, and the bike is always ready to be fully demanded and challenged to the limit – although I haven’t experienced this, honestly speaking; and this is the most fascinating about this bike. Normally you feel when you’re demanding too much from the bike, e.g. in a very long and fast descent, but with Diamante you don’t feel this. It’s like you can go faster and faster. The bike demands you and this is awesome. I also like riding more technical roads, like short steep serpentines, because you can get the most of the bike and have fun. My Diamante rides better with the Microtech M138 wheels. These wheels are sensational! Another thing that I like about the bicycle is the geometry. Last but not least I love the looks. The bicycle is just stunningly beautiful, eye-catching. Wherever I am with the bicycle I am stared at for a long time. The bike is absolutely gorgeous and beauty is in every detail you look at – very Italian.