SPEARFISH — Bryce Thorman works to get his mountain bike ready for Saturday’s Black Hills Super 6 races at Big Hill Trailhead south of Spearfish.
It ensures that the tire pressure of the bicycle is correct and that the chain is properly lubricated. A rag helps Thorman remove excess moisture from the chain, and he circles around the meadow to make sure the bike is ready for a 30-40 minute ride.
Thorman is a 24-year-old Spearfish resident who has been a full-fledged mountain biker for seven years. He competed in the six-hour team event as part of a three-member group.
“To come back outside often,” Thorman said of his decision to return to the sport after taking a break in high school. “Exercise is important, and a lot of people do it.”
Mountain biking is hard to start, according to Thorman. “Good bikes cost thousands (of dollars), so it’s not like putting on a pair of running shoes,” he said.
Thorman has competed in every Black Hills Super 6, which is in its fourth year.
“The team aspect is really fun about it. The fact that it’s a fundraiser for CASA and the six-hour game,” Thorman said when explaining what keeps him coming back.
What does it mean to be part of a team rather than an individual?
“You’re hoping you have the same ability and kind of have the same lap time, so you feel like you’re contributing to the team,” Thorman said.
Thorman was the second runner on his team and said his role was to hold position or try to catch the others.
“Our goal is to try to be the fastest team and to be ahead of the other competitors,” he said.
Thorman, Ryan Niesent and Conrad Thorman made up the Rambler 3 team. They completed 13 laps in a total time of 6 hours, 10 minutes, 50.8 seconds en route to second place.
The Black Hills Super 6 was rather small in the first year. Thorman said many other attendees wanted the event to grow, so most returned the following year.
“It’s very competitive and very expensive,” Thorman said of what he learned about the sport. “I think it’s increasing, especially among women.”
The first downhill on the Big Hill course stands out from Thorman.
This 2 mile stretch is technical, fast and great fun for him.
Thorman rides four to five times a week and competes in about 15 events each year.
Community is what Thorman values the most.
“At the end it’s kind of a cool little social party, with everyone talking about the race,” he said.
Other challenges for Thorman, aside from cost, are finding time to ride.
He said a cyclist should prepare for a trip and make sure the bike is set up.
Thorman prefers a single track created by hand tools instead of large machinery. Preferred track width is 2 feet.
Many residents remember Thorman from his Black Hills Gold Swim Team days.
He said the lung capacity developed by a swimmer can carry over to mountain biking.
The top finishers from Saturday’s Black Hills Super 6 mountain bike races follow.
1 Jennifer De Hueck (Spearfish, SD), 12 laps, total time 3 hours 11 minutes 58.7 seconds
2 Kim Kinney (Spearfish, SD), 9 laps, total time 3:02:10.2
3 Angie Duncan (Spearfish, SD), 4 laps, total time 2:57:14.7
1 Erin Kelly (Spearfish, SD), 9 laps, total time 6 hours 3 minutes 51.3 seconds
1 Pedal Party, 10 laps, total time 6 hours 18 minutes 34.2 seconds
2 teacher creatures, 9 laps, total time 6:05:48.8
1 Bob Boyd (Spearfish, SD), 14 laps, total time 3 hours 0 minutes 35.2 seconds
2 Steve Blote (Rapid City, SD), 10 laps, total time 3:05:38.5
3 Scott Vincent (Rapid City, SD), 8 laps, total time 3:22:01.9
4 Scott Ellingson (Spearfish, SD), 7 laps, total time 3:25:57.4
1 Benny and The Jett, 16 rounds, total time 3 hours 8 minutes 0.6 seconds
2 Xtreme, 14 laps, total time 3:10:23.5
3 FatherAndSon, 13 laps, total time 3:01:07.5
4 Ridge Riders, 13 laps, total time 3:04:46.1
1 Carl Fritz (Spearfish, SD), 12 laps, total time 6 hours 31 minutes 47.5 seconds
2 James Meyer (Spearfish, SD), 11 laps, total time 6:09:39.3
3 Chad Thorman (Spearfish, SD), 11 laps, total time 6:22:11.0
4 Trevor Rockwell (Sioux Falls, SD), 10 laps, total time 5:57:05.8
1 SixDeep, 13 laps, total time 6 hours 10 minutes 3.6 seconds
2 Ramblin3, 13 laps, total time 6:10:50.8
3 Larson, 13 laps, total time 6:25:55.9
4 Chain Reaction, 11 laps, total time 6:19:09.6
1 Sidney Sutherland (Columbia, Mo.), 9 laps, total time 3 hours 18 minutes 0.5 seconds
2 Clara Currier (Spearfish, SD), 7 laps, total time 3:11:01.0
3 Colton Ellingson (Spearfish, SD), 7 laps, total time 3:25:55.5
4 Jordyn Duncan (Spearfish, SD), 4 laps, total time 2:57:13.1
1 Ben Muth (Spearfish, SD), 9 laps, total time 6 hours 8 minutes 25.4 seconds
2 Jovan Weigel (Spearfish, SD), 9 laps, total time 6:44:10.7
3 Weston Carlson (Spearfish, SD), 8 laps, total time 6:22:01.4
1 Pitches Be Crazy, 11 laps, total time 6 hours 34 minutes 33.2 seconds
2 Queen City Cubs, 8 rounds, total time 6:21:07.1
3 Da2DUDES, 7 laps, total time 6:54:48.2
1 Team Ramrod, 11 laps, total time 3 hours 0 minutes 45.6 seconds
2 vroom vroom vrex, 10 laps, total time 3:16:48.1
3 Girls on Bikes, 10 laps, total time 3:17:33.2
1 Late 2 The Party, 13 rounds, total time 3 hours 9 minutes 9.8 seconds
2 Biking Paradox, 12 laps, total time 3:07:43.5
1 Wheelie Awesome, 12 laps, total time 6 hours 10 minutes 51.7 seconds
2 BCBC Factory Race Division, 12 laps, total time 6:20:00.7
3 Return passing, 11 laps, total time 6:36:49.1