Two mushers remain outside of Dawson City, although one of them was withdrawn and the other has intended to scratch from the 2018 Yukon Quest.
According to Quest staff, Severin Cathry remains a legitimate competitor in the race and is not withdrawn. Due to an internal miscommunication, Quest staff believed Cathry had called for assistance, but upon further review, it was found that Cathry never sent an SOS and therefore continues to race.
Regardless, Hugh Neff plans to scratch from the 1,000 mile international sled dog race once he arrives into Dawson City, which would make him the ninth musher to leave this year’s Yukon Quest. Race Marshal Doug Harris says it’s just been one of those years where many teams are dropping out before finishing:
“It’s just one of those unfortunate incidents, because there were some injuries to the mushers that could have happened anywhere and, unfortunately, happened during the race. And it was unfortunate with all the time and effort they put into the race, being prepared for it, that it occurred, and that’s just the way it is. It has been very cold, some of the temperatures they’d be running in at night would be 50 degrees below.”
Looking at the remaining mushers, Allen Moore maintains the lead and pushes on towards the Pelly Crossing checkpoint. Moore left Dawson City at 8:30 am PST (7:30am AKST), and although it’s not official (as of 6pm AKST), the GPS tracker shows second-positioned musher Paige Drobny has now left Dawson. Matt Hall currently holds onto third position and has also left Dawson according to the GPS tracker.
Rounding out the top five are Ed Hopkins, who checked into Dawson City and began his 36-hour layover yesterday morning at 8:28 PST with Vebjorn Aishana Reitan following him almost two hours later.
Image at top: file photo: Matthew F. Smith, KNOM.