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K&N Signs World Renowned Motorcycle Stunt Riding Artist Leah Petersen

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You have to be creative, intelligent, and a dedicated person to do wheelies fulltime according to Petersen.
You have to be creative, intelligent, and a dedicated person to do wheelies fulltime according to Petersen.
After years of wandering alone, along the road less traveled, female motorcycle stunting artist, Leah Petersen had an epiphany as to how she fits into the world of extreme sports. Petersen transformed her sudden intuitive leap of understanding into refined life goals, and then she made a course adjustment in her methods and approach to getting there.
For 2013 Leah Petersen will bring her ridding talents and branding savvy to K&N.
For 2013 Leah Petersen will bring her ridding talents and branding savvy to K&N.


Petersen is a statuesque, blond, all-American looking girl that makes her living stunt riding professionally aboard full-sized sport bikes. She lives a high adrenaline lifestyle traversing the globe performing at shows and competing at stunt riding events. She got her first street bike, a GSX-R600, at age 19. She rode and survived the mean streets of New York, Italy and Los Angeles. "Finally, in Los Angeles I learned about the sport of stunt riding when I went to an XDL Show, and I bought a stuntbike the next week," declared Petersen.

Petersen's talents are not limited purely to her abilities to express herself on a motorcycle; she also has a keen understanding about product branding. Her customized stunt bikes are violet or with pink accents which are quite possibly visible from space, she has a top-tier, professional looking personal website and she manages a stunt riding magazine. She also has posted a popular video explaining how anyone can build their own stunt bike. As a powerful brand ambassador for a number of products, including Icon motorcycle gear, this season Petersen will also shine her high intensity spotlight on K&N products.
It was at an XDL Show in Los Angeles that Petersen first learned about stunt riding.
It was at an XDL Show in Los Angeles that Petersen first learned about stunt riding.


It's clear from watching from your videos and pictures that you've spent a good deal of time working on your stunts. Give us some insights into what goes into being a "Stunter?"
"Stunting is a lot of DIY problem-solving. You really have to want it! First there is the issue of finding some stunt riders, learning where they ride and being accepted into their social group. Then you need to buy a bike and build it, and then there is a lot of trial and error (trial being stunts and error being crashing) involved in learning. Sometimes you feel like you spend more time in the garage than actually riding."

"If you want to take it to the next level and make a career of it, it's just as entrepreneurial and DYI. It takes a very creative, intelligent, dedicated person to do wheelies fulltime."
Street riding in New York, Italy and Los Angeles can be more challenging than stunt riding.
Street riding in New York, Italy and Los Angeles can be more challenging than stunt riding.


How many shows or appearances do attend in a season?
"I have split my career thus far between Europe and America, so I am still learning what a 'normal' season in America is. Stunt competitions and events come and go, so it's hard to predict. But you can bet if there is something within a two day drive, I will be attending!"

What all went into making the decision to quit your job and become a fulltime stunt rider?
"It was kind of a now or never situation. I had a great job in NYC and stunting was just a hobby, but being one of the few female stunters, I kept getting calls for stunt gigs. I figure a desk job will always be there, but the chance to stunt fulltime won't."

Explain a bit about your plans to "create new, never before things" and to basically go were no woman has gone before?
"I think stunting is a great metaphor for life. Even for people who may never pull a wheelie or ride a motorcycle. It's all about passion and finding new forms of expression, I always hope it inspires people to try harder to overcome their own fears. I would love to use stunt riding in non-conventional ways to get the sport out in front of a broader demographic."
Petersen says there's a lot of trial and error involved in learning to be a stunter.
Petersen says there's a lot of trial and error involved in learning to be a stunter.


You will be working on K&N Lifestyle and/or How to Videos, can you talk about that a bit?
"I have used K&N products before our partnership, so I can speak from the heart, which is important to me when creating content. In developing my website, I see how much people around the world appreciate the how-to videos. I know I was lucky to have experienced riders supporting me when I started and still today; hopefully our videos can help anyone enjoy stunt riding, no matter where they are. Learning how to keep your bike running correctly, means riding another day and that is what matters!"

What's up next on your calendar?
"I have a few video shoots this spring and of course I am building a new bike for the season. It's kind of the quiet before the storm, where I can enjoy riding with friends, because once summer comes, it will be all "work." I of course use the word 'work' loosely because in the end any riding is a good time!"

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