Jesse Combs remembered during first Women’s Day at Sturgis Rally

Local News

BUFFALO CHIP CAMPGROUND, S.D. (KELO) — Day five of the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally brought something new to the mix, the first ever Women’s Day. Women from all across the country are taking part in the event, that also pays tribute to a South Dakota native remembered as the “Fastest Woman on Four Wheels.”

Jet-car speed racer and South Dakota native Jessie Combs died nearly two years ago in a crash in Oregon.

But today, her presence is known by her foundation and all the women who were inspired by her, Combs wanted women to not only ride their motorcycles, but to work with the automotives they ride.

Danielle Theis, Jessi Combs’s sister, rode in on Jessie’s bike today on the Biker Belle Ride. She is inspired by all the women here today.

“Sometimes when you are trying something like riding for instance, it can be lots of things, shooting guns, working with tools, and it’s not really maybe a women’s ‘thing to do.’ Learning from other women is the best way to do that so this community of women is fantastic, we have a lot of diversity today but we all have one thing in common, that we love to ride,” Theis said.

More than 170 women from across the country traveled from Deadwood out here to the Chip. Including Sherry Evans and Debi Frohs from Vancouver, Washington.

“To see all these women, some small, larger, just handling these bikes like champs,” Frohs said.

“The men ride these bikes and we handle them just as well as they do,” Evans said.

The women say COVID-19 is not a concern for them. Toni Woodruff and Kelly Yazdi are organizers of the Women’s Day events.

“So we did take some precautions and respect everybody’s choice of what they needed. We tried to make it an indoor/outdoor event. We used food boxes; we were careful,” Woodruff said.

There are five different workshops here at the event. Including Silversmithing, Automotive 101 and leather making.

“This day has just really turned into this full celebration of just what it means to be a women in the motorcycle culture,” Yazdi said.

Organizers of the women’s day events at the Sturgis Rally urge women who didn’t come this year to consider making their way out next year.

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