It's 8.30am Alaska time. Did anyone sleep?
The Red Team pulled in to White Mountain checkpoint 57 minutes behind the speedy Jeff King and here all teams have a mandatory eight hours rest.
I don't know what to tell you as from here; your guess is as good as mine. Dallas Seavey is right on their tail with Mitch Seavey, Martin Buser, Sonny Lindner and Joar Leifseth Ulsom all also on the run to White Mountain. Once again, this race is tense, nerve-wracking and definitely not over.
During the break Aliy will feed the team a couple of meals and plenty of snacks, massage and stretch them and let them get as much rest as they can. She will TRY to get some rest for the final push to Nome. She will also need plenty of calories herself as she will be ski-poling and kicking as much as conditions will allow on the trail over the hills to Topkok and through the infamously windy "blow hole" area.
L-R: Topkok and Blow Hole from the air (photos: Bridgett)
The last run is around 77 miles and at the pace these two are going we will see them in Nome late this evening or in the early hours of tomorrow morning - a remarkable recording breaking time. John Baker's current record time of 8 days, 18 hours, 46 minutes and 39 seconds had him finishing just before 10am on Tuesday. At this point they are on track to smash that.
Today we will be setting up the dog yard in Nome and have fleece coats, blankets, straw, Alygval massage linament and all the meaty, soupy kibble and snacks a dog could want ready and waiting for them. They will have a week of pampering ahead of them once they cross under the burled arch in Nome. We can't wait to see them!
Allen and the Black Team pulled into Unalakleet at 5.17am this morning and are currently resting before the windy 40-ish mile run to Skaktoolik later this morning.