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Record Field Starts Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race
AP ^ | Mar. 6, 2004

Posted on 03/06/2004 2:31:07 PM PST by nuconvert

Record Field Starts Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race

Mar 6, 2004

By Mary Pemberton/ Associated Press Writer

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - Fans crowded downtown Anchorage on Saturday to get autographs and be photographed with their favorite mushers in the annual send-off for the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. "I'm so excited," said Nancy Jostad of Hoboken, N.J., who came to Alaska especially for the start of the race. She waited in line to have her picture taken with Aliy Zirkle, one of 17 female racers in the 2004 field.

"Women rock," Jostad said.

The ceremonial start of the 1,100-mile race from Anchorage to Nome - the world's longest sled dog race - is held each year on the first Saturday in March. The serious racing begins Sunday.

This year's competitors come from as far away as Italy, Germany and Norway.

Suzanne Jammin came all the way from Washington, D.C., to be photographed with four-time Iditarod winner Martin Buser, who is running in his 21st Iditarod.

"We have followed him since the beginning," said Jammin, who recently moved from Alaska.

Buser came in fourth last year and won in 2002. "I'm just getting good," he said.

The Iditarod, now in its 32nd year, commemorates a 674-mile relay race from Nenana to Nome in February 1925, when dog teams successfully delivered serum to prevent an outbreak of diphtheria among children.

A record 87 teams are competing this year. The purse is more than $700,000, with the winner getting $69,000 and a new pickup truck worth more than $41,000.

It normally takes the top teams nine to 10 days to reach Nome.

Only Buser has done it in less than nine days, finishing the 2002 race in eight days, 22 hours and 46 minutes.

Buser said his team this year is a lot like the 2002 team: "Quiet, confident, even, deep and balanced."


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: alaska; dog; iditarod; race
Mush!
1 posted on 03/06/2004 2:31:08 PM PST by nuconvert
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To: thackney
pingggggg
2 posted on 03/06/2004 2:35:41 PM PST by pax_et_bonum (Always finish what you st)
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To: nuconvert

these people n dogs are amazing...
3 posted on 03/06/2004 2:41:59 PM PST by hoot2
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To: nuconvert

4 posted on 03/06/2004 2:47:07 PM PST by hoot2
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To: hoot2
Thanks
5 posted on 03/06/2004 2:48:29 PM PST by nuconvert (CAUTION: I'm an acquaintance of someone labelled :"an obstinate supporter of dangerous fantasies")
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To: hoot2
The map in post #4 is from last year. This year the race officially starts in Willow after the ceremonial start here in Anchorage today.
6 posted on 03/06/2004 3:38:05 PM PST by ALASKA ("Send lawyers, guns, and money.")
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To: ALASKA; nuconvert; hoot2; pax_et_bonum

I could not find a map updated with Willow as the restart but...


We watched from downtown for the start but moved near 20th and Ingra for a much better view.

7 posted on 03/06/2004 4:46:14 PM PST by thackney (Life is Fragile, Handle with Prayer)
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To: thackney
Hey, nice sled pic.
8 posted on 03/06/2004 6:03:17 PM PST by nuconvert (CAUTION: I'm an acquaintance of someone labelled :"an obstinate supporter of dangerous fantasies")
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To: nuconvert
Thanks, I took a lot of pics. A few are worthwhile.



9 posted on 03/06/2004 6:26:32 PM PST by thackney (Life is Fragile, Handle with Prayer)
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To: thackney
Neat. Thanks!
10 posted on 03/06/2004 6:54:25 PM PST by nuconvert (CAUTION: I'm an acquaintance of someone labelled :"an obstinate supporter of dangerous fantasies")
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To: nuconvert
With the Iditarod the best dogs win.. IF the musher don't crap out...
11 posted on 03/06/2004 7:05:44 PM PST by hosepipe
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To: hosepipe; buffyt; Dog; Dog Gone; hoot2; thackney; blam; ALASKA
Iditarod Leader's dog dies on trail
12 posted on 03/15/2004 2:57:28 PM PST by Shermy
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To: Shermy
Lead dog is the best dog. Might not be the strongest. The dogs love to run, and they love to pull the sled.
13 posted on 03/15/2004 3:06:31 PM PST by RightWhale (Theorems link concepts; proofs establish links)
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To: Shermy
Takk and Blue both went down, sad.
14 posted on 03/15/2004 3:41:09 PM PST by blam
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To: Shermy
[ Iditarod Leader's dog dies on trail ]

I know, I live in central Alaska. Big news here..
Iditarod is hard on man or beast and equipment.....

15 posted on 03/15/2004 4:35:31 PM PST by hosepipe
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