Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Red and Black 200 Team Wrap-Up

Chris sat down with Moira and told her about his team for the Two Rivers 200.



It was fun to race this team of mostly two year olds with some great experience to back them up. We enjoyed running some new trails and racing along side so many other teams.

Lester is brilliant. He did struggle a bit on the trails we run every day for training because we took different routes that he didn't think we should be taking; but all in all he did an incredible job and I was pleased to have him up front.

Chena did great for her first race as the main leader. She was always loping, always happy and always motivating the team.

Woody was a superstar! He never dropped his tug line the entire race. He did a good job as a back up leader when Lester made the "wrong decision" (the right decision as far as Lester was concerned!).

Daisy (right) is another superstar! She is one of those dogs that you never have to worry about because she is always pulling and never screwing around. She also gets in my face and smothers me with kisses whenever I try to put booties on. (Photo: Helen Campbell)

Violet - is sassy and loves to bark at every team she passes. She is never aggressive, she just makes a lot of noise. She was always ready to eat and always ready to go.

Coal (left) needed a little motivation at the beginning of the third leg but after I had a good talk to him he picked it up and pulled for the rest of the run.

Chemo is level headed and never makes too big a fuss. He always works. It was nice to have his calming presence and experience on the team.

Pepe (right) - the little ball of energy - was key to this race. He ran in wheel for the entire last leg and helped us up the really steep hills at the end. (Photo: Helen Campbell)

Hotshot - this was the longest race Hotshot has been on. He has such a big heart and he works so hard all the time that I'm amazed that he had energy left at the end of the race.

Amber (front) - was barking on the up-hills even at the end of the race. She has so much energy and drive and motivates the entire team, including me.

Cayenne (back) - eats like horse but seemed to use more calories than she takes in and because of this she was low on energy towards the end. But, she still worked her heart out and finished with me.

Wedgy also worked her heart out! She pulled so hard for the first 150 miles that she got a bit tired during the last leg. But, even at the finish she was trying as hard as she could.



My MVD for the race was Daisy because she was always such a hard worker!


MVD Daisy

Thanks to the handler crew of Wendy, Mark and Padee for their hard work over the weekend and to the TRDMA and trail team who put on this such a good race.

Below is some video Wendy captured in Angel Creek Lodge checkpoint. It is just as Chris is getting ready to leave: the dogs have had their meal, are bootied but still have their jackets on are are just starting to move about. It is interesting to see how calm the team is; you can see Lester and Chemo, the experienced ones, getting as much out of their rest time as they can. You can be sure once all jackets are off and they were off the straw the noise and excitement level raised dramatically!

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

Great wrap up Chris and Team.
Chris and pups had an excellent Run! What a great experience for them all.
Funny- is that handler trying to open a plastic bag with frozen hands in the cold wind??!
Great video Wendy!
Mush On SPK!
Padee
Fairbanks

Cindy Schaus said...

Awww, these dogs did so good. They are all rock stars. They are also so calm in the video which shows how hard they had been working. Dog kisses are the best, way to go Daisy....and way to go Woody for "helping" Lester out. A good race is the cure for Pepe's ADD. Loved seeing him curled up in a ball and resting. Enjoy these wrap ups and info on the dogs so much.

Steve Parker said...

Really nice summary of the team performance. The video is a great look at the group mid-race. Lots more trails to come.

Margaret said...


Thanks so much for this detailed performance review for the R&B 200 team, Chris!!!

So happy to hear that Chena behaved like a real leader!!!

("Real Leader" definition in the 2-legged world = A motivational speaker, always positive and able to leap proverbial tall buildings in a single bound, constantly.)

You SP Kennel Team members are all awesome - great video - THANKS!!!

Dawn E said...

MVD! That's great. So Daisy kissed her way into Chris' heart. Awwww. Great review again. Thanks! Loved in the video the dogs looking over at the howlers on team next door like "dudes, it's not time yet!" Much fun

Heidi Phillips said...

Good summary and good job Chris. The video was wonderful too. It was cool to see the dogs chilling while waiting to go. They know what to do! Poor Lester, he did not make a wrong decision, it was planned that way between he and Woody. Lester was allowing Woody to show his stuff in lead... :)

Great job!!

Heidi

Lisa B said...

Thanks for telling us how your race went Chris. I think getting rewarded with Daisy kisses sounds pretty awesome. Love Amber's spotted nose and blue eyes, she's a beauty. All the dogs are cute/handsome but there are a few that cross over into extra photogenic territory. They all seemed happy and content in the video and like they were having a great time - kuddos to Chris. Hope to cheer you on again at future races.

Anonymous said...

Great wrap up. Chris really seems to understand these dogs. Love the Lester description. These insights are so awesome for those of us in the lower 48! Thanks SPK!

patricia lewis said...

Thanks Chris!

Hey Becky, your girl, Violet, listened up and ate her meals. Way to go, Violet!!!

Really cute photo of Daisy. She's been winning my heart this season. Got my eye on her. Keep up the good work, Daisy, and congrats on MVD!

Nessmuk said...

It's been so fun watching the Fire Litter (plus Champ and Cayenne) grow up to be sled dogs!! Those pups were my first SPK litter to watch from their beginning, and it's exciting to see how their careers are progressing! So proud of them all!! Nice also to see Woody getting some kudos!! Lol....I had to laugh at the video...my goodness, our boy Chemo really takes his rest seriously!! Good Boy!! I also loved the pictures I have seen of Chris caring for his Team....you can tell he loves those dawgs!! Thanks for the wrap up report!

A-town's Becky said...

Yes Patricia, and I am so PLEASED. Good job VI!
Way to go Chris for unlocking the key to eating and resting for this group of energetic dogs--not an easy challenge.
:-)

Lester: "Silly Chris, he's forgotten how to get back to the kennel. He must be too sleep deprived." If you only knew Lester.
I for one, am happy the Quest is heading into Canada this year. It may have been nice practicing the finish near home last year, but it must also be confusing for the dogs to run past their home after 900 miles.

Thank you Chris and Moira for the great recap, and thanks to all who contributed pictures and video.
Wonderful teamwork on all counts for a very successful race.

Gaye Morgan-Walton said...

Good report on a good race! There looks like a bright future with these young up and coming dogs learning the lines!

J elliott said...

Congrats... But why are so many team members' covers/blankets askew/off? Just asking... Is this the norm?

Margaret said...

Wow!!!

Countdown begun on SP Kennel website for Yukon Quest!!!

What a busy time this must be at SP Kennel preparing for the complicated support plans for Dawson City YUKON layover (back to 36 hrs, IIRC)!!! And not to mention two different races (1000 & 300).

We will all be having to prepare for this race back home as armchair mushers, too. Woof, woof, woof!!!

Let's go Black Team YQ 1000!!! Let's go Red Team YQ300!!!

WOOF!!!

Barb said...

Another great recounting! Funny and insightful. Thank you Chris and Moira. All those dog personalities and kisses - wow that is just the frosting on the cupcake.

Marilyn cozzens said...

Great recap Chris & Moira. Well who could not enjoy kisses from Daisy. Chris would love to hear the motivation talk you gave to Coal. Thanks.