Iditarod 2022 Trail Report: Strategies come into play as leaders hit the Yukon

The leaders are on the Yukon River in the 50th running of the Iditarod.
Published: Mar. 11, 2022 at 4:56 PM AKST
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Brent Sass said he and his Iditarod dogs are loving the cold conditions along the Yukon River as he checked into, and out of, the Ruby checkpoint early this morning. As the first musher to Ruby, Sass wins a gourmet chef-prepared meal, but decided to take a rain check.

“Gee, I wish I could stay, but the schedule doesn’t allow it,” Sass told checkers in the checkpoint. “It’s cold, I gotta take advantage of it. It’s beautiful.”

Checkers told Sass the temperature was right about zero degrees. He grabbed his drop bags and some Heet to fuel his stove and got back on the trail.

Dallas Seavey, the five-time race champion in pursuit, said some of his dogs weren’t feeling well, but recovered during their 24-hour layover and were doing much better Friday morning. He told Alaska’s News Source he saw a new energy in his team on Friday.

Meanwhile, the fact that most mushers have now completed their 24-hour layovers means that the real race has begun, and trail standings accurately reflect mushers head-to-head. That shows in the current race standings, as Pete Kaiser, the race’s 2019 champion, is now up in the top 10 after having completed his 24-hour layover.

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