Sunday, March 15, 2015

There's a freight train loose on the Iditarod trail...

Dallas Seavey and team during the
Ceremonial Start of Iditarod 43.
March 7, 2015
…and the conductor is Dallas Seavey.

Now that the leaders are bearing down onto the coastal community of Unalakleet we’re starting to see the typical strategies emerge from the teams. Dallas is back to his typical run rest schedule, and he’s gaining time and miles on everyone around him. Dallas took off out of Kaltag at 5:35am this morning, Jeff King and Aaron Burmeister left the same checkpoint almost an hour ahead of him. He’s run down King (who is currently resting on the trail) and nearly ran down Burmeister. He is currently resting, and we can assume he’ll camp for a few hours before blowing through Unalakleet.

Expect this same run pattern for the remainder of the race (or at least until White Mountain). Dallas’s team is one of only maybe three teams that is steadily gaining speed at this point in the race. He will continute to chug down the trail picking off anyone ahead of him. Jake Berkowitz blogged today saying Dallas was terrifying to have behind you, and in front of you. He’s declared the younger Seavey the one leading the Iditarod – and he’s not wrong.

Burmeister is maintaining, but slower than before – and King is showing major signs of slow down. Aliy’s team is older and is at a steady pace. Mitch Seavey is another team looking like they’re on an upswing. He’s been running conservatively up to this point, waiting to pull out the reserves and make a move. Still not seeing that move, but I expect to see it soon. Perhaps this will be the year they come in 1 and 2?

Jessie Royer is making a statement still, and is currently resting in the same spot Aliy did earlier today. She’s looking at a possible top 5 finish if she can maintain her lead she has on the rest of the pack, and she’s in shooting distance if another team falters to climb further.

There’s just about 300 miles to go, so it’s still too early to tell who the winner is, but you can expect an exciting run up the coast. If you haven’t caught the “Iditaflu” yet, you might want to start coming down with it so you can call into work. The next three days will be exciting!

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