Sass Pulls Into Lead, But Kohnert Close Behind

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Day 1 of the 2014 Yukon Quest saw a lot of movement over the first 72 miles, as mushers planned their rest strategy.

Brent Sass was the second musher to start the race in Fairbanks, and while he wasn’t the first one into Two Rivers, he was the first one out. Sass rested his team earlier in the afternoon, and stopped only to grab straw and fuel before continuing on at 9:16 pm. As of midnight, Sass was just over two hours outside of Mile 101.

Not far behind him is Torsten Kohnert. Kohnert arrived in Two Rivers at the same time as Sass and left just one minute later. Hugh Neff was first into Two Rivers at 6:33 pm, but rested for just over four hours before heading out in fifth place.

Meanwhile, defending champion Allen Moore, who led the pack earlier in the day, stopped to camp before Two Rivers and then flew through the checkpoint with-rested dogs en route to Mile 101.

Veteran Cody Strathe used the same strategy, sneaking up on Moore and leaving Two Rivers just two minutes after his counterpart.

The middle of the pack left Two Rivers within the span of an hour. Mike Ellis was first at 11:19, followed closely by Normand Casavant, Hank DeBruin and Dave Dalton.

Mandy Nauman, the lone woman in the race, came into Two Rivers at 11:30 pm and continued right on through. As Day 1 came to a close, six mushers remained in Two Rivers – Jerry Joinson, John Schandelmeier, Brian Wilmshurst, Tony Angelo, Matt Hall and Curt Perano. Jean-Denis Britten was about 6 miles out of Two Rivers.

But it’s early yet and plenty will happen on Day 2!