Let’s just dip back into the Copper Basin 300 for a minute as Chris gives his dog by dog wrap up of their race.
Photo Julien Schroder – Arctic-mood.com
Scout led the charge for most of the race. He’s nine years old but he hasn’t let anything slow him down. He is smart, strong, dedicated and always ready to go.
Woody led for a good portion of the race; he is very strong, very motivated. I have a really close relationship with him after working on the glacier and he definitely held up his end as my number one dog.
Tried and true Olivia rotated through lead also. She hasn’t let three litters of puppies slow her down one little bit. (Photo left: Katie Hope)
Scruggs is the toughest dog I know. He was a really important part of the front end of my team, motivating all the younger dogs as we marched through deep punchy snow.
Chena’s my girl! Whenever we aren’t moving she looks contemplative, morose and not really all that excited but as soon as we start moving she gets a big smile on her face and doesn’t let up. She also rotated through lead.
I was so excited to have Nelson as a last minute addition to my team after Aliy took Scooter for her team. He has so much energy and experience and just loves to run.
Five made a really strong showing in his first major race. He was always looking at me wondering if we were going to keep going and I would always tell him ‘yes’ so he would put his head down and he would pull up the next hill.
If there is one word to describe Ginger (right) it is smooth. She has such an effortless gait and is always tight on the tugline no matter what.
Ernie ran wheel for the entire race which is not an easy position but he did an amazing job. While he isn’t as big as his brothers he definitely makes up for it with strength and enthusiasm.
Outlaw was my other wheel dog and he was impressive. He pulled his heart out the entire race; didn’t even think about letting the line go slack. I don’t think I could have made it as far as I could without him.
Hotshot has improved by leaps and bounds this season. He is incredibly strong and while he is not the fastest dog he is always ready to pull up a hill, get me out of a rut or put his head down and keep driving forward.
Cayenne kept trying even when she got in over her head. She made it to the third checkpoint and although she wasn’t always pulling she never dragged the team down or thought about quitting.
This race was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done and scratching was even harder than running the 220 miles beforehand. The trail was incredibly difficult and some of my younger dogs were working harder than they have ever had to work before and I finally decided that it would be better for them to end early than try to drag them to the finish line.
Thanks Wes for being a great handler and to all the volunteers and organizers who helped make the race a reality.