All but the last four out of twenty-four mushers in the 2018 Yukon Quest have checked into Circle on the trail. The top eight mushers have left Circle on their way to Eagle, Alaska, the last stop before entering the Yukon Territory.
Two-time Quest champion Allen Moore holds his lead in 1st position. An unconfirmed tip from the Yukon Quest Official Facebook page says as of approximately 3:45pm AKST, he was resting with his team at Slaven’s Hospitality stop with 14 dogs.
Paige Drobny remains in 2nd position, checking out of Circle about half an hour before last year’s Quest champion Matt Hall, who is in 3rd position with 14 dogs. Competing in her 3rd Quest run this year, Laura Neese continues to hold fourth position, with Ed Hopkins behind her in fifth position. They both dropped one dog coming out of the Circle checkpoint, with Neese leaving Circle at 9:38 this morning, 12 dogs in tow, and Hopkins leaving at 11:14 with 13 dogs.
The top rookie in this year’s race has gained in position since KNOM’s last Quest update at 12noon. 21-year-old Vebjorn Aishana Reitan is in seventh position, checking out of Circle at 1:12 this afternoon. Another rookie – Aniak local Ike Underwood – remains in 22nd position, still on his way to Circle as of 6 o’clock this morning. Although unofficially, the GPS tracker shows he has arrived at the Circle checkpoint.
Kotzebue-based veteran Katherine Keith is still the latest musher to scratch from the race due to her broken wrist, according to a Quest press release. Quest staff could not be reached at the time of this update for further comment regarding her injury.
KNOM will bring you more updated information as this international sled dog race continues to unfold. Our next update is Tuesday morning at 7 o’clock.
The top mushers in the 2018 Yukon Quest are heading into the second quarter of the thousand-mile international sled dog race. According to the leaderboard, six mushers have left Circle and are heading down the 160-mile stretch to Eagle, Alaska.
2013 Quest champion Allen Moore retains his lead in first position. According to the leaderboard, Moore checked out of Circle at 7:11 this morning with 14 dogs.
Paige Drobny has overtaken last year’s champion, Matt Hall, and is now in 2nd position, according to the leaderboard. Drobny left Circle at 8:40 this morning, about half an hour before Hall. Laura Neese and Ed Hopkins maintain fourth and fifth positions, respectively.
48 hours into this year’s race, two mushers have scratched so far. Katherine Keith, the Quest veteran from Kotzebue, scratched at Circle at 7:41 Monday morning, after she broke her wrist.
Another veteran musher, Mike Ellis, scratched Sunday afternoon at the Mile 101 checkpoint. According to a Quest press release, the Fairbanks musher made the decision for the health and well-being of his team. Quest staff could not be immediately reached for further information on the scratches.
21-year-old Vebjorn Aishana Reitan is still the top rookie in the race. He’s currently in eighth position, as he checked into Circle around 7:00 Monday morning, according to the leaderboard.
Aniak musher Ike Underwood remains in 21st position. According to the leaderboard, he checked out of Central at 6:00 this morning and is headed toward Circle.
KNOM will bring you more updated information in the coming newscasts, as this international sled dog race continues to unfold.
Image at top: Mushers are currently passing through the Slaven’s Roadhouse dog drop on their way to the Eagle checkpoint. (Photo: National Park Service, 2013)