Sunday, March 11, 2012

Who left the most for the coast?

There is no extra credit for miles leading the Iditarod. If there were, then Aliy Zirkle would have a credit rating in the 800's. Sitting on the Bering Sea coast at the Unalakleet checkpoint with 750 Iditarod trail miles under her harness, she has led the race for most of those, yet she can't seem to shake the pursuit. Historically, she has not been speedy up the coast. But she has never been in this position before either, nor has she ever commanded a team like this one. Lets take a look at who has a chance to catch her.

Dallas Seavey: Dallas has kept the front of the pack in his sights the whole race and has now maneuvered into second. By his own admission, he hasn't unleashed his team to their fullest potential, and they look strong. look for him to take the brakes off and perhaps do a long run or two.

Aaron Burmeister: Aaron is a veteran of 12 Iditarods, but hasn't been in the race since 2009 when he placed 7th. Like Dallas, he as kept within reach of the front and has been creeping upwards in the standing. We have previously remarked about his analytical intelligence. He has been training in Nome this year, so no doubt his doggies will be fired up on this home stretch as they will be racing in familiar conditions. He has hinted that he has one or two tricks up his sleeve, so don't be surprised if he pulls out a monster run to propel him to the front. the team looks strong.

John Baker: Mr Steady. He won last year's race by keeping a steady pace while the leaders eventually hit the wall. We see no new strategy for John, and he is positioned well to make it work again if the leaders screw up.

Jeff King: Caught boasting that he was positioned to win, Jeff has closed the gap with the front, but is it enough? With four victories and many many competitive Iditarods under his belt, he has the experience, knowledge, and maybe even a trick or two to pull this off. Don't count him out yet.

Mitch Seavey: He spent some time in the front, and then dropped off the pace a bit, but just when we are ready to count him out, he has shown new life. He might not win, but a top 5 postion is within his reach if he can hold his team together.

1 comment:

Tulukaghogamiut said...

It will be fun to watch those 3 musketeers on the coast to see if they keep up the speed. How exciting!