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Hugh Neff, in Cripple, “all about getting to Nome”

Hugh Neff in Cripple

Just a few minutes after arriving into the checkpoint, Hugh Neff talks with Laureli Kinneen in Cripple, Thursday morning.

“For me,” Hugh Neff says, “it’s not just about racing. It’s about exploring, too.”

The Tok, Alaska musher’s exploratory spirit has taken him mushing around the world – not just up and down the Iditarod trail, but also to races elsewhere in the state, to Norway, and soon to New Zealand, where Neff says he’ll compete this fall.

In the Cripple checkpoint, Neff caught up with KNOM trail reporter Laureli Kinneen. After taking a break from the Iditarod in 2013 to compete abroad, Neff says he’s happy to be back in the race this year.

With his team down to 10 dogs, however, Neff says that his competitive goals for the second half of the Iditarod trail are simple: “it’s all about getting to Nome, really.”

With Laureli, the musher seemed to be happy just to be part of this year’s very unique but fascinating race. “This Iditarod definitely has a different feel to it… and I get front-row seats to watch.”

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