Kotzebue was the target today for most of the front runners in the 2023 Pro Class Iron Dog race. Many teams are 1043 miles into the race and while 'The 'Stads' are still in the lead, Team 7 has less than a 30 minute course time advantage over Team 14 of Casey Boylan and Bryan Leslie as they pulled into the seaside village north of the Seward Peninsula for a much-needed layover delcaration.
The day started with three champions in the top 5 positions totaling 11 first place finishes. This field of veteran racers littering the top half of the leaderboard is a class of the fastest long-distance riders on the planet. There is no other race that puts itself in the same category and its often grossly underestimated, in my opinion, on how hard this is. Iron Dog racing veteran Bobby Menne added this to give race fans a bit more info on just how difficult it is to ride a sled over 2,500 miles in just 7 days. Menne reports: "A racer on one of the top teams just sent me this (photo below)... Any dietitian or trainer will tell you it’s almost impossible to sustain that for 6 days. Then add on subzero temps and flat light and wind noise which fatigues the brain and it’s the exact reason this is the toughest race in the world"