There are just 16 mushers left out of the starting field of 26, as two more called an end to their adventure Saturday, on the trail of the Yukon Quest 1,000 Mile International Sled Dog Race.
Both Joar Leifseth Ulsom and Cody Strathe had been running well, sitting in fourth and sixth place respectively, as they left the Eagle checkpoint. But both mushers turned back after travelling down the trail toward Slaven’s dog drop, and eventually decided to scratch in Eagle. Both Leifseth Ulsom and Strathe cited the well being of their dogs as the reason for scratching.
They join seven other mushers who have scratch from this year’s Yukon Quest, including Magnus Feren Kaltenborn, Ray Redington Jr., Jeff King, Matt Hall, Tony Angelo, Tamra Reynolds, and Scott Smith.
Musher Rolland Trowbridge was withdrawn from the race after asking for outside assistance.
Sass and Moore Head for Central
Brent Sass maintained the lead Saturday, rolling into Circle City at 4:48 am and taking his mandatory six-hour rest. He departed for Central at 11:28 am, nearly six hours before Allen Moore arrived in Circle.
Moore also took his mandatory layover in Circle, hitting the trail again at 9:26 pm.
As of midnight, Hugh Neff was 30 miles out of Circle in third place, while Ed Hopkins was just four miles behind Neff.
Damon Tedford was on his way to Slaven's while Normand Casavant, Torsten Kohnert, Dave Dalton and Mike Ellis were all resting at Trout Creek hospitality stop. Brian Wilmshurst and Jason Campeau both left Eagle on their way to Slaven’s while Ryne Olson, Nicolas Vanier, Lance Mackey and Kristin Knight Pace were all resting in Eagle, serving their mandatory six-hour layover.
That means 15 of the 16 remaining mushers have made it to Eagle. Rob Cooke is the only musher left to visit the checkpoint, and he was resting about 45 miles out.