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Longtime Alaskan legislator and Iditarod advocate Gail Phillips passes away

The Iditarod is saddened by the news that longtime Alaskan legislator and Iditarod advocate Gail Phillips has passed away. One of Gail’s first Iditarod volunteer jobs was making presentations to local communities with Joe Redington, Sr. Gail and husband Walt’s house in Spenard served as the Iditarod Trail Committee’s office and many hours were spent …

Governor Dunleavy Recognizes Iditarod Appreciation Day

March 19, 2021 (Anchorage, AK) – Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy has proclaimed today, March 19, 2021, as “Iditarod Appreciation Day” in Alaska and issued the following remarks:   WHEREAS, the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race is an Alaskan tradition and source of pride for Alaskans from Ketchikan to Utqiagvik; and   WHEREAS, this annual event commemorates the incredible strength …

Eye on the Trail: Red Lantern Race Was Close

The last two mushers were waiting in SKW-WM for their required 8-hour rest to expire.  Victoria Hardwick of Bethel took to the trail at 14:57.  Dakota Schlosser of Willow was released at 14:59.  The two mushers were competing for the honor of perseverance -THE RED LANTERN and a Jon Van Zyle original painting.  It wasn’t …

Eye on the Trail: Hal, Larry and Will in Deshka

Hal Hanson was resting in SKWM (Skwentna White Mountain) and talked to Liz Raines, Insider’s Back of the Pack reporter.  Throughout that interview Hal kept coming back to not wanting the race to be over.  His dogs were maturing and he was very proud of their growth and development.  His team started the race in …

Victoria Hardwick is final Iditarod 49 finisher, claims Red Lantern Award

  Veteran Iditarod musher Victoria Hardwick (bib #48), of Bethel, Alaska, is the final musher to cross the finish line in Deshka Landing at 12:22 a.m. today, claiming the Red Lantern Award. Hardwick and her race team completed the Iditarod in 10 days, 9 hours, 22 minutes and 6 seconds. She finishes in 36th place, just two …

Eye on the Trail: Rookies McNeal, Jagow, Underwood and Tuminelli Finish

Joshua McNeal made Deshka Landing and the un-burled arch at 07:07 on Wednesday morning.  Joanna Jagow followed at 08:54 and Sean Underwood closed out the morning arrivals at 11:48.  These three along with all rookie finishers and Rookie of the Year, Chad Stoddard will receive the coveted belt buckle. McNeal drove a team of nine …

Chad Stoddard wins Rookie of the Year

Iditarod rookie Chad Stoddard (bib #18) of Anchorage, Alaska, won Rookie of the Year when he and his race team finished in 23rd place. He becomes the rookie with the best time in 2021, finishing in 9 days, 4 hours, 3 minutes and 10 seconds with 13 dogs in harness. After graduating from Western Washington University, Stoddard moved back …

Eye on the Trail: Beals, Hall and Buser at Deshka

Travis Beals placed 25th in his 8th running of Iditarod.  Beals is 8 for 8 in his Iditarod career with 3 top 10 finishes and a personal best of 5th place.  In 2015 he was honored as the Most Improved Musher raising his previous finish of 37th to 11th place.  Travis was born and raised …

Eye on the Trail: Failor, Stoddard and the Twins

Matthew Failor of 17th Dog Kennel has finished his ninth Iditarod in 21st place.  Failor was one of the three mushers, including Tom Knolmeyer and Sean Underwood, who encountered serious overflow near Safety Checkpoint in the 2020 race and deemed it necessary to scratch.  Failor’s personal best finish is 13th.  Beginning with the 21st musher, …

Eye on the Trail: Rounding out the top 20

  Ryne Olson has taken a giant leap from a previous best finish of 31st to making the un-burled arch in 18th place on Tuesday.  Ryne is 3 for 3 with Iditarod finishes. She moved to Alaska from Durango, Colorado to pursue dog mushing with Aliy Zirkle and Allen Moore at SP Kennels.  During her …