Great Deer Chase a great opportunity for families
CALUMET — The 14th annual Great Deer Chase mountain bike race was held in the outskirts of the Swedetown Trail network in Calumet Saturday. Four races were held: 2.5- and 4-mile races for youths, as well as 15- and a 30-mile races for adults.
Louis Hindman of Marquette won the 15-mile race with a time of 1:01:05.0. His brother, Travis, took 10th with a time of 1:06.49.3.
“I just (kept) looking ahead,” said Louis. “It was definitely hard to take it in that I was in first. I just couldn’t lose my focus. It’s pretty unbelievable. I just had to keep going, keep moving forward.”
Many racers started out strong but a positive mindset carried Louis across the finish line first.
“(I had to) not let my guard down ever,” he said. “(I) just kept pushing as hard as I could, no matter what, even if I was way ahead. (It feels) really good.
“I feel like I’ve trained hard throughout the season for this and feel like I’ve earned it.”
German Cordova of Chicago returned to the area with his family to compete.
“We’re here for the Great Deer Chase, we’ve been coming up here for about three years now,” said Cordova. “My wife is from Hancock. It’s been an awesome event for the kids, going out here and the nice trails that we have.
“We’ve been coming here for the last three years now (and) there’s a lot more kids now. Everybody’s pretty active. It’s a good time for everybody. We’ve seen some people from all over the Midwest here for the race.”
Judge Anderson of Palmer, Michigan, also competed in the 15-mile race for the third year with a 12th place finish overall with a time of 1:08:21.2, and finished second in the 13-15 age group.
“(I’m here) to do the Great Deer Chase and have fun,” said Anderson. “(I just want to) beat my time and not break anything. The trail layout is really fun, nothing like what I have back at home.”
The Deer Chase is about getting outside and raising money for the Swedetown Trail system. Great Deer Chase Director Marc Norton helped make sure all went well with this year’s race.
“Getting people out and enjoying the outdoors is one thing,” said Norton. “Although this is a competitive event, it’s kind of a way for people to test themselves, how well they’re progressing in their mountain-biking skills. It’s also the way we earn money to maintain these trails.”
“This is one of many events that our providers and staff are involved with throughout the year,” said Kelly Fosness, communication specialist for Aspirus Keweenaw, who were the main event sponsor this year. “We’ve got staff under the medical tent. We have them on the trails just facilitating along the ride. There are many positions that our providers and staff get involved in and they look forward to it every year.”
Around 54 people are needed to keep the race going every year, according to Norton. Though the event was unable to bring in enough volunteers to host the event in downtown Calumet, the organizers still think it was successful.
“We had great weather for it,” he said. “(It was) perfect weather for a bike race. I am thankful for the people who stepped up, some of them at the last minute, to make sure that we got all of our bases covered this year.”
1, Emily Stilwell, 2:20:5.6; 2, Nicole Alexander, 2:23:15; 3, Ethel Karinen, 2:23:32.4; 4, Joy Lindberg, 2:47:36.3; 5, Cara Bartle, 2:49:24.8.
1, Samuel Kilpela, 1:54:09.2; 2, Mark Kransz, 1:54: 09.6; 3, Drew Wilson, 1:57;51.3; 4, Craig Thomas, 2:00:55.7; 5, Troy Eddy; 2:03:31.6.
1, Kathy Abbott, 1:10:07.4; 2, Michelle Denbeste, 1:14:17.1; 3, Joan Rundman, 1:14:42.8; 4, Kelsae Fitzpatrick, 1:17:03.7; 5, Ashley Lehmann, 1:18:53.3.
1, Louis Hindman, 1:01:05.0; 2, Francis Broeders. 1:01:19.3; 3, Brian Lindberg, 1:02:22.6; 4, Tim Corrigan, 1:02:47.8; 5, Shawn McIntyre, 1:04:02.8.
1, Megan Broeders, 24:29.5; 2, Cadence Anderson, 25:07.1; 3, Abigail Codere, 26:33.9; 4, Fiona Brassard, 36:43.1.
1, Ryker Paulsen, 21:33.7; 2, Caleb Morgan, 23:29.7; 3, Colin Hart, 24:52.6; 4, Rowan Hart, 29:49.7.