Mitch Seavey Wins A Third Iditarod
Also sets record even higher for oldest musher to win
Mitch Seavey and his canine athletes have absolutely dominated this year’s Iditarod! Now you can call him a 3-time champ, the oldest musher to win at 57 years old, AND the musher with the fastest finish in the Iditarod’s 45 year history. In fact he has shattered the record set last year by his son, Dallas, by more than 7 hours!
Race observers have been marveling at Seavey’s team loping in and out of checkpoints along the Norton Sound. The dogs were leaning aggressively into their harnesses when stopped and even pulled the snow hook in their desire to get back on the trail. They showed impressive energy especially after covering almost 1,000 miles in a little more than 8 days. Their ability is a testament to generations of dog mushing experience, fantastic dog care, disciplined training, shrewd planning and strategy and dogged (pun intended) determination.
Mitch Seavey and team cruising into Nome. | Video by Marty Van Diest
Seavey and his team have had a fantastic trip with everything coming together perfectly. He mentioned that as far back as Ruby he had an inkling that he would win. In White Mountain he stated, “I don’t think it could be any better, I don’t think I could complain about anything.” He also added, “This might be my best-executed race.”
This is the sixth year in a row that a musher with the name ‘Seavey’ has been the first to Nome. The father-son duo has redefined the parameters of the Iditarod. As a father, Mitch has been proud of what Dallas has accomplished, but when asked about how he felt about besting his son this year he replied, “I think he’s won a lot — it’s my turn, if not somebody else’s.”
In fact, Mitch has been so dominant that as far back as Unalakleet Dallas realized he was basically competing for second place against Nic Petit, Joar Leifseth Ulsom and others. Petit left White Mountain only 13 minutes behind Dallas. And you can rest assured the young guns are running up every hill and pumping the sled along on the level as it looks like it could be neck and neck to the end. It will be intriguing to see how the placing for 2nd through 5th turns out.
Joe Runyan, an experienced musher in his own right, who has won the Iditarod, the Yukon Quest and the Alpirod, has been astonished while watching Team Seavey over the last 150 miles of the race. He also writes a blog for the Iditarod and he made this statement: “I just witnessed one of the great teams of Iditarod. Very impressive, curious, alert, powerful, a tribute to the Alaskan husky, a breed that has developed based primarily on performance. The result, an animal that can travel over a hundred miles a day in adverse arctic conditions. Must have been a thrill for Mitch to drive such a team across the sea ice and tundra.”
Congratulations Mitch! Well done.