Among the special awards at the Sunday banquet were two given to Jessie Royer: the Leonhard Seppala Humanitarian Award and the Most Inspirational Musher Award.
According to a release from the Iditarod Trail Committee, Zappa chose to scratch out of the best interest of her dogs.
Alaska State Troopers report an on-scene investigation identified alcohol as a factor in the incident.
2016 winners Tyler Aklestad and Tyson Johnson of team #8 are currently holding onto first position as they head back on the trail to the finish line in Fairbanks.
72 teams will compete on this year’s trail from Fairbanks to Nome. The race begins in 12 days, with the ceremonial start on March 4th.
35 pro-class teams from around the state will compete in the 2017 Iron Dog race starting Saturday, February 18th, with the halfway ceremony in Nome scheduled for February 22nd.
Yukon Quest Executive Directors Natalie Haltrich and Marti Steury, before the race start, delve into the history and deeper purpose of the race, focusing especially on the two nonprofits that operate on both sides of the US-Canada border.
This will be Royer’s rookie run in the Yukon Quest, although she’s been running dogs for 25 years. She has claimed a spot in the top 20 in Iditarod the past three years in a row – with her best run in 2015, taking 4th place.
After arraignment in Nome last week, a preliminary hearing is scheduled for Charles on Thursday, January 26th, at the Unalakleet Courthouse.
Strutz made the announcement Friday, stating his retirement will be effective on May 31, 2017.