We want to thank in particular Wes, Ray, Bridgett, Scotty, Ryne, Derek and Mark for their help - we really appreciate you all.
Photo: Sebastian SchnuelleNow that it is a few days after the race, we are taking the time to reflect on how each team performed. Overall it was a huge success.
Obviously the RED team were awesome! Aliy said her team was ready to race and even a little restless during the 4-hour rest. They even pulled her anchoring snow hook 10 minutes before their "go time". It was somewhat understandable as they stood only 10 feet from Jeff King's team of phenomenal and excited canine athletes.
The very experienced duo of QUITO and SCOUT lead the team the entire route. Drawing bib #21 meant the team had to execute quite a few passing maneuvers to get to the front of the race pack - actually they passed 16 teams in the first 50 miles. They had several poor passes and several very good passes. This is too be expected during the first race of the season. Aliy said that after her first disastrous pass (her fault) she concentrated more and the rest were at least mediocre. The leaders were followed by SCRUGGS and SCOOTER who are good passing dogs with abundant enthusiasm. As you saw in the video of the finish, SCOOTER was the cheerleader, a role she fulfils in most races. NACHO and BOONDOCKS ran together, something Aliy enjoys, as they are so similar in attitude despite such a massive size difference. Two lads, MAC and CHEMO ran solidly together and relatively inexperienced NELSON and Super-Star WILLIE were a perfect combo. FELIX ran with his dad BISCUIT in wheel and they not only physically resemble each other, they are a good match in pace, attitude and performance.
The BLACK team was also superb and did a fantastic job to come in third. To have two teams in the top three sets us up really well for the season ahead.
In a late line-up shuffle Allen lead out with RAMBLER and BEEMER who were both as strong as they ever are. CHICA and SISSY ran in swing and backed-up the leaders well while passing other teams (the swing dogs can sometimes make or break a pass if they don't follow the leaders strongly). I.V ran with SCHMOE and they proved a good combination, working together well. CLYDE and PUPPET were strong team dogs doing their jobs effectively and with minimal fuss. LESTER and TATFISH are about as different as two dogs can get - TATFISH is touched with a little A.D.D. and LESTER a quieter but confident dog - yet they had good energy together. BONITA and IZZY ran in wheel for both legs. IZZY is really coming in to her own and we're excited about her season ahead. BONITA is always a hard-worker and good looking gal.
The RED AND BLACK Team finished strongly and looked great as the crossed the line - Meghan will write a race wrap-up later in the week and tell you about each of her team mates.