Six mushers scratch in day three as of 7 p.m.
McGRATH – As a four-time Iditarod winner, Jeff King is not a novice when it comes to long-distance racing.
But even for him, this year has been a challenge so far, especially at Dalzell Gorge.
“It was really, really rough,” King said. “It’s very steep. But there’s just no snow. The trail crew did an incredible job of making obstacles that were movable go out of the way, but the fact is it was the most difficult dog sled ride I’ve ever taken. And the scariest one that I’ve ever taken.”
All 16 of his dogs are doing fine, he said, but because of the trail conditions he’s rarely had all of them hooked up at one time.
Meanwhile, six mushers have scratched Tuesday, bringing the total to seven who are out of the race. Mike Santos pulled out after reaching Rohn, citing personal reasons for dropping out. DeeDee Jonrowe and Linwood Fiedler also scratched in Rohn. Jonrowe and Fiedler both said the conditions in Dalzell Gorge forced them to quit.
Gus Guenther hurt his ankle between Rohn and Nikolai and scratched in Rohn.
Jim Lanier and Jan Steves scratched in Rainy Pass.
Mushers who have scratched:
- DeeDee Jonrowe, bib #16
- Gus Guenther, bib #4
- Mike Santos, bib #68
- Linwood Fiedler, bib #32
- Jim Lanier, bib #38
- Jan Steves, bib #40
- Cindy Gallea, bib #42