NS150- Morning 2 – No Update… Hmmm

We all are relying on the Tracker, but it is showing no movement at this point. I am having a tough time believing it unless all the mushers are taking the balance of their rest in Shaktoolik. This would be out of the ordinary and I would have expected one musher to break out early. I am trying to call Shaktoolik to confirm at this time.

NS450 – Into Shaktoolik – Halfway to Nome!

Shaktoolik at Sunrise Looking North

Shaktoolik at Sunrise

Shaktoolik is 220 miles into the 450 mile race. Pete was gaining on Dee Dee Jonrowe headed across the flats into the coastal checkpoint. Weather is a bit breezy and cold. I expect a short break here before heading onto the ice. After leaving this point in the race last year Pete, leading the race, was cutoff by open water and ice as big as houses. A GCI commercial later in the year highlighted the events of the night. Not knowing what to do, Pete called his Dad Ron in Bethel with his Cell phone. Ron called the Race organizers who then sent snowmachines to guide the mushers around the open water. Pete had a substantial lead at the time, but it was erased as all the mushers caught him to then wait as well.

We won’t see that this year as there is no open water to report at this time. I expect he will burn a little time here to keep everyone within striking distance, but to also have a fresh team as they head north against the wind and into the dark. This seems to be Pete’s area for stories– Last year in the Iditarod he passed Mitch Seavey’s team while fast asleep on the back of the runners. He had been following Mitch for some time and then he was gone. When he looked around, he found Mitch behind him. The Team had just done their job and headed for the checkpoint, leaving Pete to dream the night away 🙂

We’ll have an update for you in the morning. Expecting an early morning checkin at Koyuk.

Go Team Kaiser!

NS150- Shaktoolik Soon – Rest Factor Changes Race Position

As the Mushers head onto the flats outside of Shaktoolik they are facing a bit of a ground storm. Luckily it is night and it will be easier to see the trailmarkers. Dee Dee is breaking the trail, so that is helping those behind her as aell. The Rest factor may be something to look at as we head north into Norton Bay.

From Norton Sound 150 Facebook:

Total rest taken so far:
DeeDee Jonrowe 11hrs 3mins
Chuck Schaeffer 10hrs 59mins
Martin Buser 10hrs 48mins
Gerry Willowmitzer 10hrs 47mins
Aaron Burmeister 9hrs 57mins
Pete Kaiser 9hrs 49mins
They have a total of 18 hours mandatory to take prior to reaching White Mountain. In white Mountain they have another mandatory 6hr layover.

This puts the top five spots into limbo in more ways than one. Dee Dee Jonrowe has a hard lead at this point in the race, but the 2-5 positions are a little softer. Our favorite Team have a bit over a 2 hour deficit that they need to make up which means that Dee Dee and Gerry Willomitzer can rest a bit shorter and stay on the trail longer. This section of the trail may take more out of teams than others though, so the times into Koyuk will be the real story. It will be tough to have to stay and watch other teams hit the trail while having to spend that last bit of mandatory rest.

Here are my calculations:

Musher – Present Position – Out of UNK – Rest Differential – Calculated Out Time – Actual Position

Dee Dee Johnrowe – 1 – 16:39 – O Differential – 16:39 – 1
Pete Kaiser – 2 – 17:02 – 1 Hour 14 Minutes – 18:16 – 6
Aaron Burmeister – 3 – 17:08 – 1 Hour 6 Minutes – 18:14 – 5
Gerry Willowmitzer – 4 –  17:33pm – 16 Minutes – 17:49 -2
Martin Buser – 5 – 5:40pm – 15 Minutes – 17:55 – 3
Chuck Schaeffer – 6 – 6:06pm – 4 Minutes – 18:10 – 4

So Stacked up by Rest Differential, the race looks a whole lot different:

Dee Dee Johnrowe – 1 – 16:39 – O Differential – 16:39 – 1
Gerry Willowmitzer – 4 –  17:33 – 16 Minutes – 17:49 -2
Martin Buser – 5 – 17:40 – 15 Minutes – 17:55 – 3
Chuck Schaeffer – 6 – 18:06 – 4 Minutes – 18:10 – 4
Aaron Burmeister – 3 – 17:08 – 1 Hour 6 Minutes – 18:14 – 5
Pete Kaiser – 2 – 17:02 – 1 Hour 14 Minutes – 18:16 – 6

What this doesn’t tell though, is the speed of the mushers and how the added rest during the latter part of the race may improve the performance of the teams. Go Team Kaiser!

NS450- Onward to Koyuk

Unalakleet - 5:30pm - 2-7-2013 Looking North

Unalakleet – 5:30pm – 2-7-2013 Looking North

Tracker shows Dee Dee out of Unalakleet followed by Pete and the Team and Aaron Burmeister in third. Looking at his rest schedule, Pete has “Spent” about 10 hours of rest so far in the race. Dee Dee has a bit more rest spent so she actually is a bit further ahead than it shows in terms of how much time she has to wait in checkpoints. All mushers will face a mandatory 6 hour layover in addition to the 18, so this may come into play. Tracker times are pretty much jiving with official times- Pete was out right at the top of the 5 oclock hour. That gives an almost exact 5 hour rest.

His strategy though, of regular rest periods is also smart as the Team gets into a routine of sorts.

We will keep you posted. Go Team Kaiser!

Tonight’s Norton Sound 450 Mushing Weather:



NS450- Into Unalakleet

Dee Dee Jonrowe has a one hour lead at this point in the race. Team Kaiser and Aaron Burmeister arrived together just about an hour after her with Gary Willowmitzer hot on their heels. I was speaking with Ron this morning and this race is a bit different than others in that the teams are basically given a Rest Bank of 18 hours that they can spend in checkpoints along the race. This adds a bit of extra strategy as team spend their rest at different points along the race. This means that you will more than likely see rest periods AT checkpoints rather than on the trail and we may see differing ways of spending that rest. We also may see them all do the same thing. What this does mean though is Chuck Schaeffer is an hour down in terms of rest as he will have to spend an hour more after leaving earlier than the other teams last night. I expect another long break here as teams “spend” some rest and before the run into the wind towards Koyuk. Go Team Kaiser!

Into Unalakleet:

10:58 DeeDee Jonrowe

11:55 Aaron Burmeister

12:02 Peter Kaiser

12:19 Gerry Willomitzer

12:36 Martin Buser


NS450- Burning Up the Trail- Dee Dee into Unalakleet

Dee Dee Jonrowe First into Unalakleet at 10:58. Trackers are problematic right now. I would expect  Pete and the Team as well as Aaron Burmeister in very shortly. Mushers are making better time than they did last night. A 30 mile per hour tailwind on their backs might be helping a bit.

More as soon as we get it.