It is 10 PM AST. The SP Kennel crew is out in the parking lot of the Hawthorn Suites here in Anchorage feeding and walking dogs while talking through final plans for tomorrow.
The dog trucks will depart the hotel at 8 AM AST tomorrow to assume their assigned spots along 4th Ave. The first team leaves the starting chute at 10 AM and the other teams follow at two minute intervals. Aliy, in starting position 17, will depart at 10:32 AM. Allen, in position 76, will depart at 12:30 PM. At this ceremonial start each team will be carrying an 'Iditarider' in their sled. Each Iditarider is the winner of an on line auction for the privilege of riding with an Iditarod racing team. Aliy's Iditarider will be an employee of Horizon Lines of Alaska. Allen's is Lynn Budzak, a dedicated SP Kennel supporter.
The starting teams have been finalized. Barring any last minute problems, here is the list of canine athletes participating in Iditarod 2008.
Aliy's Team: Biscuit, Bullet, Butterscotch, ChaCha, Heidi, JJ, Meg, Oddball, Petunia, Reeses, Rose, Skittles, Snickers, Teddy, Tony, Venus.
Allen's Team: Hoss, Heeler, Pingo, Manny, Spicy, Homey, Stormy, Dill, Larry, Garlic, Girlfriend, Roy, Tatfish, Mouse, Sparky, Chica.
After the ceremonial start tomorrow, we all head north to Willow for the 'real' start on Sunday afternoon at 2 PM AST. More later!!