Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Half Time


Like all sports we have to endure a half time as the teams rest up and plan their next strategic moves. It appears from reading a few blogs coming from reporters in Takotna...that the bulk of the mushers may just be settling in for their mandatory 24 hour break....so on with the show...

Racing for his 32 year is 58 year old Rick Swenson, wearing bib number 8. (He did have to withdrawl from one race and scratched in another) Known as the "King of Iditarod" and the "Winningest Musher" I am guessing he wont retire until he has had the chance to once again take on a Mackey at the finish line.


Racing his second race in 1978 he showed great sportsmanship when a photo finish showed his six dog team, even though his sled crossed first, actually lost to Dick Mackeys eight dog team by "half a muzzle". A record finish going down in history as the closest race finish.

1983 another close finish but the race title left Swenson's hands as it was once again passed on to a Mackey, Rick Mackey, who proceeded his father in racing after his fathers muzzle famous finish.


Lance Mackey and Rick Swenson have been on the trail several times competing against each other over the last few years, Will Rick get that chance to once again go muzzle to muzzle with a Mackey on the Main Street of Nome?

This year is would be hard to do, Rick is at least 24 hours behind the leader at the moment and Mackey is just two hours. Rick also left in eighth position and is now in 27th while Mackey left in 47th position and is now in fourth. But Swenson is known for coming up from behind and making his move at the last minute often winning the race by mere minutes...

Comments on "Half Time"

 

Blogger Shana said ... (6:22 PM) : 

UPDATE!! Martin Busser made a run through Takotna while the others have stopped. This may be a smart manuever if he can gain as much time as possible before the first musher leaves Takotna in the wee hours of the morning. Busser still has to stop for his twenty four also, but weather permitting and dogs in full power he may just pull this off.

 

Blogger Stan said ... (9:32 PM) : 

Not only does Busser still have to stop for his 24, he also down to 14 dogs that need a rest. Mackey is resting his 16 dogs, King is at 15 dogs and letting Busser and now a second musher scent and break trail for them. I still like the spot that Mackey is in and then King. Nome is still down the trail a piece.

 

Blogger Shana said ... (9:14 AM) : 

Mackey is now leaving the pack behind fast...including King...Busser took his 24 in Ophir, but he is running a smaller team...I am thinking Mackey into Nome about two hours before Burmeister....I am thinking we have two new younger mushers leaving the old names in the history books.

 

Blogger Stan said ... (10:17 AM) : 

Hey, you cannot steal my analysis and prediction, this statement is copied from your site, comment section in your previous posting, Mackey is on a mission that no other musher has been able to do.

Note from previous comment section:

Mackey will let a few teams run in front of him to mark and break the trail, then make a dash for Nome, King had be better to run to keep up with him. These dogs have been to Nome, they know the drill. My data indicates Mackey into Nome, 3 hours, 14 minutes and 26 seconds ahead of second place.

 

Blogger Stan said ... (10:32 AM) : 

Just took a look at the standings. Mackey is still running 16 dogs, you have to go down the list to #24 Dee Dee to find the next team that has 16 dogs. Mackey ran from Takotna to Ophir in 2 hr 35 min, he blew through Ophir without resting a minute, all the other mushers are stopping for coffee. Other races are taking up to 3 hrs. King made the same run in 2 hr 43 min, eight minutes slower than Mackey. Mackey is traveling at 9.49 mph compared to 9.20 mph for King. Still on track with my prediction, barring a major wreck, Mackey into Nome first with King behind him.

 

Blogger Shana said ... (12:29 PM) : 

Pop's I am thinking Mr King is running out of steam...he is slowing down quite a bit and Aaron Burmeisters dogs are heading home to Nome....if nothing goes wrong...yes mackey will make it first but who's on second is left to be seen....

 

Blogger Stan said ... (12:10 AM) : 

Wow, Mackey is burning up that trail. He is four hours ahead of 2nd place, still running 16 dogs. Wonder what happened to Swenson, Busher, and King, they have really fallen back. Did you notice the speed that Mackey was traveling, 10.4 mph compared to 5 and 6 mph of the mushers behind him. It looks like there is no stopping him unless something bad happens to his team. I still look for Dee Dee to start moving up rapidly, she is also running 16 dogs, she should place into the top half dozen if her team holds up.

 

Blogger jd plumma said ... (12:24 AM) : 

Dee Dee is one tough cookie. Lance has shown a jump ahead in a big way, alright. seems a bit early for that drastic a lead. Maybe he plans to throttle back and save a sprint for later.

 

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