Iditarod 2013 coverage

[dropcap]D[/dropcap]ue to unforeseen circumstances, we are hardly able to keep up with all of the Iditarod updates on our own this week, let alone write about it. We wanted to make sure that we didn't leave you hanging! Therefore, we have decided to bring on Iditarod junkie and aspiring musher, Beth Shepard, to help keep you in the loop! Please welcome Beth, as she takes on the challenge of covering the race as one The Alaska Life's correspondants for Iditarod 2013 . Beth and I will be brining you the must have details and  current news on the times, layovers, leader boards and any other must read articles that will keep you up to speed on your favorite mushers. So without further adue, the updates you have all been waiting for! Top four times between Nikolai and Takotna are: 1. Lance Mackey(#5) 7h 33m 2. Jake Berkowitz(#44) 7h 40m 3. Mitch Seavey(#36) 7h 52m 4. Dallas Seavey(#19) 7h 54m Note: Jeff King did run in 7h 50m. The thing is he did take a 7 hour break in Nikolai. This is a good indication that Jeff is resting his team to push toward Iditarod or Further? We will know in the morning the importance. These are the top four,  and at this part in the race can tell you a lot. These top four should be considered our main contenders! The current leader is Lance Mackey (#5) who is aggressively running his team. He is down to 13 dogs. His average speed is 8.8 mph . A very impressive speed considering he is running a young team. Mackey was the first to the ghost town of #iditarod. Martin Buser is in 4th currently on the official standings. Remember Martin took his 24 hour layover in Rohn. The current leaders have not. Mathmatically Martin is coming out top of the race. Over night and Day 4 of the race will be interesting to say the least. Will Lance Mackey stop at Iditarod or continue on ? I believe Lance wants to be first to Anvik. The first to Anvik will pocket the millennium Alaskan hotel first musher to the Yukon Award. The musher will receive a gourmet meal and $3,500. This is second place winnings for the Yukon Quest. Lance who had troubles in the Yukon Quest this year might like to make up in his winnings. In the next 24 hours we will see movement in Takotna . [caption id="attachment_2932" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Beth joins Lance Mackey for a quick photo-op at the start of the this year's Iditarod."]Lance Mackey with Fan Beth Shepard[/caption] Many mushers have now checked into Ophir, some are taking short rests here and others are pushing on toward the next checkpoint at Cripple. The distance between these two check points is daunting, and allocates for about 105 miles of this 2000 mile race. This tends to be one of the faster sections of the course, Although it is not necessarily a technical part of this race, it has been said that mushers almost never know where they are at any given time. They will have to trust their instincts and hope for a nicely marked trail. It will be necessary for most mushers to camp along this section of trail at some point. Also, you can count on this stretch to take even the best of teams 16-18 hours to reach the next check point.

From Iditarod.com as of Wednesday 7:45 pm:

Race Standings – Top 5 Mushers

1 Lance Mackey Bib 5 OUT OF Ophir AT 03-06 05:45
2 Sonny Lindner Bib 67 OUT OF Ophir AT 03-06 08:06
3 Jeff King Bib 18 OUT OF Ophir AT 03-06 08:50
4 Jake Berkowitz Bib 44 IN TO Ophir AT 03-06 01:14
5 Nicolas Petit Bib 16 IN TO Ophir AT 03-06 04:15
Here is a fun little clip  aptly named, "Iditarod Chorus". On a daily basis, mushers & volunteers get to enjoy a little serenade.  A group howl indicates contentment,happiness and relaxation. Those are some happy dogs!  Footage from the Dallas Seavey Facebook page, Dallas Seavey is #19. Here is the press release for what is to be expected for this year's "First-Musher-to-the-Yukon-Award".

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