RED TEAM UPDATE
As I write this Aliy and the Red Team are travelling towards to coast at Unalakleet having camped out on the trail for 4-4.5 hours about 25 miles out of Kaltag. Sebastian caught a few pics of the dogs enjoying a nap in the heat of the day. They're currently sitting in fourth position behind Brent, Dallas and Mitch with the chasing bunch coming up very fast behind.
Emily Schwing from KNOM managed to get a few words from Aliy today about last night. Read/Listen here.
There are many, many press articles about what happened, and the story is now global, so I couldn't hope to link them all. Here is one from the Alaska Dispatch News from this afternoon on the trial and one from local news KTVA Alaska. It seems Aliy does not want to dwell on it and is trying to keep positive for her team. She is very in tune with her team (and the whole kennel in fact), and they with her, so she wants to keep them happy and upbeat so they will want to continue on their trek to Nome.
Therefore, in that vein we are going to do the same on the blog. Until Aliy herself is ready to talk about it we are going to continue our coverage of the race as we have done. It's been a long and harrowing day for us also but let's do like Taylor Swift suggests and "Shake It Off" and spend our energy sending good, positive vibes to Aliy and the team for now.
Clyde did not make it back to Anchorage this afternoon and we expect him tomorrow. We do expect he has had all the attention he needs with the lovely vets and volunteers out on the trail. It is actually a good sign that he's not back yet as if he were seriously injured they would have brought him back right away for medical attention.
BLACK TEAM UPDATE
Allen and his senior/freshman team are currently resting in Nulato. They've been there since just after 8pm this evening so will probably stay at least four hours, if not more.
Allen will be trying to do the same as Aliy in keeping a positive attitude for his team. It will have been a shock to hear about the events of last night and difficult for him to not be able to do anything to fix it. He is charging on and will keep upbeat for them.
It might be about now that he will start to push the team a little more to see what they can handle. He might start to rest a little shorter and run a little longer and he will keep an eye on how the dogs' attitudes are, particularly the young dogs as they have now gone further than they have ever been before! He is really skilled at this and knows when to back off if they are not up for it. This is why a dog like Commando can get to Nome as a yearling and make the A team as a two year old!
Linda sent me this earlier this evening:
"I thought I would take a moment to tell a Nomex story that is a bit light-hearted. After I picked up Nomex last night from the hotel he was obviously confused as to what was happening. When we got to my house, he ate, we walked and I figured he would bed down for the night.
Well he did for a couple of hours and the next thing you know he's wide awake ready to be harnessed and go for a run. He woke me up with some howling and continued until I came out to entertain him. In and out of the house. He played with toys and chewed on marrow bones. We snuggled and he got a body rub. Two hours later he finally took another nap...
Only to wake me up 2 hours later wanting to be entertained again. So this trip into the house he found his way back into my bathroom where he found another dog! I heard barking and I could tell he was jumping up on something. I went back to the bathroom only to watch Nomex completely engaged and entertained by my mirror. He was totally taken by that very handsome and obviously energetic dog. He stayed there for half an hour trying to get that pup to play.
So now in my bag of treats for the returned pups will be a mirror!"