We all are excited, but let’s keep an eye on where we are and breathe a collective, “Okay, now let’s stay focused!”
Pete and the Team have 177 tough miles ahead of them. We may all be excited, but I’d venture to guess if we could talk to Pete right now he would be upbeat, but also the pragmatic Musher we have all followed over the last 10 years.
Pete arrived into Koyuk an hour in front of Joar Leifseth-Ulsom and it’s looking like about another hour in front of Jessie Royer.
Joar is still dangerous in terms of the race for the win. If he pulls out with Pete, there are still many miles to go. Each musher knows what their Team is capable of and how much rest they need to run the next 100 miles into the 8 hour mandatory layover.
As I’m looking at the time in from Shaktoolik, it is a little deceiving in terms of how far back Joar is from Pete. They were running pretty much together until just after the Shelter Cabin. That’s about 20 miles into the 65 mile run. At the Shelter Cabin, Joar was about 15 minutes behind Pete. After that he lost another 45 minutes in about a 40-45 mile run. I’m not sure what this means in terms of Joar’s Team as they looked pretty spunky coming into Koyuk. I am taking into account the added distance of the new trail as I look at these times.
I’m thinking a 4-5 hour break in Koyuk for Pete which would mean leaving at 1 or 2pm.
In a lot of ways, Joar has an advantage over Pete in that he can decide to pack up and go if he see’s Pete getting ready to leave. Pete has to decide if he uses minimal rest because he knows that Joar just won’t be able to follow, or rest a little bit more because he knows he has speed on Joar.
It’s a stressful decision for Pete and one that will be on his mind for the next bit. (Or as he sleeps on it for a few hours)
The race is not close to being over and this next section will definitely be a cat and mouse game between the new contenders, Pete, Joar, and even Jessie.
Weather is also going to be a factor:
Fog is showing on Weather Cams in Koyuk, Elim, Golovin, and White Mountain. It’s chilly and windy. And more of it to come.
White Mountain Currently
Wind Speed N 20 G 23 mph
Barometer 29.08 in
Visibility 10.00 mi
Wind Chill 8°F
Today-30 percent chance of snow. Cloudy, with a high near 31. Northwest wind around 15 mph.
Tonight-30 percent chance of snow. Cloudy, with a low around 12. North wind 10 to 15 mph.
Go Team Kaiser!