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This. Is. Huge.

Last weekend, I was sitting in a family bar and restaurant along the Allagash River in far Northern Maine. I got into a discussion with the radio operator (yes, they have radio operators there - don't bother to bring your cell phone) about that little race the Alaskans start every year the same weekend as our Can-Am shindig. No big surprise there. Dog sled folks often talk about the Iditarod, it seems.

Well, this gentleman and I somehow wandered over to the "nine day barrier" and whether we thought anyone would ever break it. We both agreed that someone eventually would - the times were just getting too close for it to remain elusive forever.

The radio guy postulated that if anyone could do it, Lance Mackey could.

DAMN RIGHT.

Lance Mackey finished the Iditarod at 8 days, 23 hours, 59 minutes, and 9 seconds earlier today.

Damn. Lance Mackey: Only guy to win the Yukon Quest and the Iditarod in the same year - twice (in 2007 and 2008), only guy to win four straight Iditarods, and now he's broken the nine day barrier. Impressive. For the record, Hans Gatt made a valiant effort to catch Lance, making up an hour, but no one could match Mackey once he turned it on in Kaltag. I'm not usually one for the favorite (and Lance is the favorite in recent years) but I always love to see Mackey win. His team is beauty on paws, he's rumored to be a really nice guy, and he's a cancer survivor. You can't beat that.

Oh, and FYI, the Jamaican is still running 48th (I suspect he's taking a required layover right now) and his lead/swing dog is none other than Larry, the dog who led Lance Mackey into Nome a few years back. Mackey has been training the Jamaican Dog Sled Team this season. Like I said, you can't beat that.

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( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
arctict
Mar. 17th, 2010 02:44 am (UTC)
Yup the Iditarod is a kind of a big thing here in the "Last Frontier". Lance is amazing and a good guy. His dogs will do anything for him and he cares. It may be his last one and he went out with a bang! At least this year a drunk snow mobiler didn't run into him before the finish.
jackwabbit
Mar. 17th, 2010 02:51 am (UTC)
Yeah, I heard about Zorro being taken out in the All-Alaska sweeps a few years back. That really sucked. At least Zorro was not killed. He's produced a lot of quality dogs, and his life at stud has served him well.

On another note, I was just thinking about you earlier tonight. Nice to see you here. (Hubby and I were having a conversation about moving again, and every time that comes up, I think about Alaska...sigh...)
arctict
Mar. 17th, 2010 03:49 am (UTC)
Zorro was a lucky dog all around. Yup I'm still here, been crazy busy moving to a new house and getting used to my promotion to management. New angle to help the critters;)

Getting the wanderlust huh - Alaska's a great place and we've got lots of animals and not just the wild kind!
jackwabbit
Mar. 17th, 2010 02:54 pm (UTC)
I always have wanderlust. Reality makes it not a, well, reality, but it's always there.
phyrelight
Mar. 17th, 2010 03:37 am (UTC)
Whoa.
( 5 comments — Leave a comment )

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