13 March 2018

Iditarod Day 9: Top 3 mushers race to White Mountain

Joar Leifseth Ulsom in Unalakleet. Photo copyright by Mille Porsild.

Out of the Elim checkpoint, the times were stacked just about how they were into Koyuk. Joar Ulsom checked out at 1 a.m., behind him Nic Petit at 4 a.m., and most recently Mitch Seavey, leaving to give chase just before 6 a.m.
However, just one day prior, the standings were different, with Petit showing almost a 2-hour lead in first place, before he ultimately took a wrong turn and had to backtrack, allowing Ulsom to push past.
Now, while the healthy 3-hour lead Ulsom showed out of Elim may seem indomitable, the fact that unexpected shale-ups happened as little as two checkpoints ago means its still very much anyone's game.
The stay in White Mountain will act as an equalizer for dog fatigue, with a lengthy layover being mandatory for every musher.
Seavey, who is also a contender, though even further behind than Petit, represents half of a father-son legacy who have won the Iditarod race for the past seven years.
Whether Ulsom holds the lead or Petit displays yet another shake up and catches up, it would effectively end the Seavey streak.

No comments: