Close Competitors!

Dear Friends,

We have a new Iditarod champion this morning!  Thomas Waerner of Norway finished in Nome after 9 days, 10 hours, 37 minutes, and 47 seconds!  Congratulations to K2 and Bark, his leaders, who led him all the way!

2020 Champion Thomas Waerner with K2 and Bark. [photo credit Teacher on the Trail™ Kelly Villar]

It should be an exciting day in Nome.  There is a long line of close competitors racing toward Nome.  Mitch Seavey is in front, resting in Safety. Jessie Royer is closing in, maybe an hour behind Mitch.  After them, there’s a pack of teams that are only 0 – 7 miles apart from one another. They may all arrive in Nome in a long line.  Passing could occur, so who will gain the top 10 places?

Brent Sass

Aaron Burmeister

Paige Drobny

Joar Leifseth Ulsom

Ryan Redington

Wade Marrs

Travis Beals

Jessie Holmes

Ramey Smyth

Michelle Phillips

Michelle has 67 miles to go until she reaches Nome.  If the dogs average 6-7 mph, how long will that take?

The next batch of five teams are resting in White Mountain.  Soon they will also be on the final stretch toward Safety and then Nome:  Pete Keiser, Mille Porsild, Jeff Deeter, Kelly Maixner, Aliy Zirkle.  More are heading there from Elim to begin their 8 hour mandatory rest.

Laura Neese resting her dogs. [photo credit Sebastian Schnuelle]

Teams are resting or running in between Koyuk, Shaktoolik or Unalakleet.  Sadly, according to Race Standings, Gabe Dunham scratched from the race in Unalakleet.  Bringing up the rear are Kaci Murringer and Quince Mountain, who have run a conservative race with more rest and slower times, but they are still working to finish the race!

Since I hear many of you are off school today (I am a dog, so am always off school), you can keep checking to see teams race to Nome.  It will be close competition for the top 20 finishers!!

Until next time, this is your canine reporter,