Thanks for the photo from Willa Eckenweiler in Unalakleet!
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From KNOM Read the full story-
Listen to the Audio:
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Ray Redington Jr. is out of UNK. As the front runners head north they are surely thinking about Jake Berkowitz and wishing him well. It is that “Luck” thing that you never can tell what twist it will bring to Iditarod mushing.
Pete and the Team left Unalakleet at about 5:00pm, giving him just a small buffer between the teams. Last year Pete left Unalakleet at 11:30pm for the 40 mile journey and arrived in Shaktoolik at around 5:ooam for a Trail Time last of 5 hours 30 minutes. That would put Pete and the Team into Shaktoolik about 10:30pm this evening.
The trail conditions, including the bitter cold, seem to be slowing teams though and Dallas Seavey is not yet to Shaktoolik giving him over a 6 hour run on the trail.
It will really be interesting to watch Pete and Ray move forward on the front runners right now. It is not outlandish that they may advance into the top teams over this night. A 1 mph advantage over many hours will bring them into the mix of the top 5 teams.
So another night of gluing ourselves to the tracker! Looks like a Tuesday finish though!
From ADN.com – What a fine looking dog team!
Looking North from Unalakleet Airport into the Hills and the Trail.
GPS shows Pete and the Team on the Move out of Unalakleet. After a 5 hour break, they head north into the wind and away from the sun.
He is currently in 6th position. Ray Redington Jr. doesn’t appear to be moving yet, but should be right behind him.
Current weather headed north is -27F with light north winds. Problem is that ANY winds when it is that cold plus the 9 mph that they will be moving will make for a pretty chilly run.
Good Luck Pete!
A short audio file from Unalakleet – Jake describing what happened.
The Iditarod just released this news:
Iditarod Veteran Jake Berkowitz (Bib #29) has been withdrawn from the 2012 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race by Race Marshal Mark Nordman. Berkowitz severely injured his hand while using a knife between Kaltag and Unalakleet. Nordman determined that the injury was severe enough to warrant the decision.
The decision was made at 14:00 AK Time. Berkowitz was in 6th position at the time and still had 14 dogs in his team. He will be flown out of Unalakleet to Anchorage for treatment.
We here at Kaiser Racing Kennel are really saddened by this news. Jake is a class act and he has been a real friend to Pete and the Team. This kind of withdrawl is a tragedy and while we are not judging the Marshall’s decision, we realize how hard it must be for Jake to take this news. We wish him all the luck and positive thoughts at this very hard time. He and his Team were poised to do great things with this race and we appreciate the level of quality he brings to mushing.