IDITAROD 2019 IS ALSO KNOWN AS "XLVII" for the continuous running of the event total (#47).  STANDING ABOVE RIGHT
SP Kennel policy 2019:  One team for each of the longest distance major races...links to race when it starts 3-3-19 - the sky on Ceremonial Start Day.

IDITAROD INSIDER:  Intervview shows lots of ID planning - including self-deprecating  humor.

AWARDS BANQUET SUNDAY MARCH 17, 2019:  4th Place in 2019!!!  Woof woof woof.

SP Kennel Red Team received the Halfway Award for completing 1st half first.  And...

Leonhard Seppala Humanitarian Award for best dog care!  WOOF WOOF WOOF WOOF WOOF

HOW IT IS AWARDED (as we heard it):   

SURPRISE!!!  SP Kennel recognized as winner for the 5th ("woof") time! 


The Red Team's adventure, day by day (begins 6:40pm approx.  EST 7:40pm).  "Pawnotes" includes some graphics from previous ID's.


  2. At the 48 mile mark. Red Team motoring along, moving up from 19th to 13th place.  This looks to be a most interesting ID, although here, about 4 hours in, it is of course too soon to tell.
  3. Now 18th place a few minutes later (resting?) - passed by Nick Petit and Martin Buser...this is why I don't watch constantly - it is nerve wracking.  Chena says not to worry.
  4. Now she's in 14th place 20 minutes later...ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZmiddle of the night, way down the list then...
  5. And upon waking...4th place!
  6. An hour later (117 mi), second place...and now resting 123mi.  Where is this? 
  7. FINGER LAKE.  That's the check point before some of the most challenging parts of ID trail...
  8. After a lengthy rest, Red Team embarks on this difficult leg.  In seventh place @145mi).
  9. We watched an interview of defending champ Joar - from Finger Lakes - and he said the trail was fine, but it was getting warm - he would run at night.  During the day he lets his dogs set their own pace - lots of rests so they can roll around in the snow.  WOOF. 



Chena not on the team, but is now able to devote herself to her position as Editor in Chief of the WOOFSITE and bring her best insights to you!!!  Here's her first post: "This is going to be a dog fight with so many highly skilled teams up front" but she warns not to count out those who picked high numbers. "ID is truly a mind game and dogs might prefer having to fight to get the lead..."  On the other paw, Chena herself loves either method - "Running in front is cool, too!" she stated, citing her recent victory in both the YQ200 as well as 2018 YQ1000.

Speed kills as the saying goes.  What I've found is the relation between "run" and "rest" in a distance race like ID or YQ is critical.  If the moving speed is faster than the average speed here at the early phases of a long distance race, unless you are driving a team of super dogs, or holding some in reserve (probably not so much this year) it should catch up with them later in the race.

Quite a few years ago, Red Team Leader kept her hand-held camera running while descending the Steps - now that is a daredevil move if ever I heard one!  The video was so scary (you could hear the "whack" as tree limbs closed in and the "BANG" as the sled bounced down each and every Step - this is not a warm and fuzzy sport!  Of course, the most scary one was when, some years later, I believe Jeff King wore a camera mounted atop his visor - the year of the "wipe outs" due to no snow cover - the dogs love this and run super fast - Red Team musher made it through but others just called it a day, "scratched." Broken bones and nerves among that group.

  1. Arriving Rainy Pass, Red Team took a longish rest...
  2. 5th place at 9pm on the way to Rohn (not the member of the Board of Finance in Weston).  Whose meeting is going on and on, taking me away from keeping track of ID...
  3. March 12th is a big meeting in Weston - Selectman, Finance, Education and our 3 state legislators...we heard First Selectman sat Weston under the present formula in SB431 (Sen. Looney) would be told it puts 42% rather than 25% toward TRSZZZZ.
  4. Upon awaking in Weston CT we read in the HOUR (Dan Haar) of the Progressive Democrats push for actions against Weston - that would be 2 of Weston's 3 legislators.
  5. Lunchtime and 5 miles to Nikolai for the Red Team...nominally in 4th place but some fast teams breathing down their neck...
  6. Arrived Nikolai (mile 207) in 4th or fifth place...


  1. We got started late covering Day #3 because we figured the Red Team would spend longer tending to ouches...out of Nikolai towards McGrath;
  2. As we write these notes, the Red Team is in fifth place, cookin' with Crisco as my favorite watercolor teacher once said...speed increased from earlier...293 miles done.
  3. "Spirit of the North" - first into McGrath goes to Quick Nick.
  4. At 9am in Weston we are shocked to see that Red Team second place!!!  Some of the lead teams may be taking their 24 hour rests, but it is nice to see anyway!!!
  5. Back from morning rounds...and it looks to me that Red Team is taking its long rest in all-day rest, and 2 8 hour rests - one along the Yukon and one at White Mountain.
  6. WRONG - only 2hrs and guess who is in FIRST PLACE at mile 359?  Red Team!!!  What fun!!!
  7. Next stop:  Iditarod.  Jefe remembers this from last year!


Spark's graphic of Iditarod Traii.  Red Team doesn't do anything half-way - but they'll take the gold.
"We didn't know Spark was an artist - hasn't got to color studies yet" Chena reports.  "CT should change its motto to 'Home of Executive Kidneys'" and Bruno agrees!


  1. Long leg to Iditarod winding down...and they arrived1:38am, AK time.  In the dark, of course.  Dogs look happy and wagging tails!!!
  2. Took a long time to get there - trail (they were breaking trail) not well marked.  But now everyone else will have an easier time.ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ24hr rest...ZZZZZZZZZZZZZ


  1. Day Five will begin around 6:40pm, but since we began some previous days late, how about this one...early?
  2. Commentary from ID regarding trail on Southern Route out for blustery Yukon...
  3. And Red Team is back on the trail, now in 12th place.  But refreshed from 24 hrs at historic Iditarod. 
  4. Into Shagealuk in 11th place...


EAGLE EYE REPORTER NOTES:  Holy crap - she's going for it, after almost as long voluntary rest, saving the 8hr. rest for Kaltag!!!

  1. WOW!!!  We took some time off...and now the Red Team is in 6th place heading into Grayling (where the top 5 are resting);
  2. On the edge of our appears some who had been ahead of the Red Team took 8 hr rest enabling Red Team to jump ahead...
  3. This "lead" mentioned above, after poring over our charts, will be given back  once Red Team takes their 8 hr rest somewhere on the Yukon.
  4. Eagles think Red Team will grace their Island for the 8hr rest...which is required along the Yukon.
  5. NOPE!!!




  1. WARNING:  This is where time "springs ahead" at 2am.  Which is why using the tracker is always better than doing arithmetic.
  2. Team loses Commando at Eagle Island- now only 13 dogs in line - which is still the highest number for any team (Jessie Royer has 13 too).
  3. During the night, Red Team, 13 strong - was that FIVE in lead?  Nope, probably Spark - made their way to Kaltag!!!  Musher check in video.
  4. We say that as ID analyst refers to "protecting their position" as a comment made by a team near the lead pack...
  5. OUT OF KALTAG!!!  On the road again, as it were.  85 miles to this is written, 24 miles in to this, the longest "leg"...



  1. At the end of the day, Red Team is chugging along in seventh - getting closer to sixth place team and seeming to draw away from those behind - but we wear rose colored glasses.
  2. This is the longest stretch in ID - 68 miles down, 17 to go 'til UNK.  Eagle team reports "Red Team moving forward!" and thru the night...
  3. In to Shaktoolik...previously, we hadn't figured that Red Team would stay here for a while*
  4. FRONT PAGE in Anchorage Daily News of Aliy giving Nomex a tip - or maybe she was just telling him what a big boy he is...
  5. For a young team they are doing fantastically well - WOOF (translation from Chena - "JMO").
  6. Team down to twelve (48 paws), departed Shaktoolik for Koyuk - total 50 miles..."But it seems like 100 because it is blowing on the ocean and the view is the same..." an official comment.




  1.  FWIW - not yet "DAY#9" - Red Team more than 40 miles behind so they are not worried about anything up front...
  2. Make that 32 miles behind...
  3. In 4th place as of 10:12pm.  818mi.
  4. Of the 48 miles to Elim from Koyuk at mile 862, that makes a baker's dozen to go...or seventy-five percent done on this leg...
  5. 868mi now, and Eagle Brigade has signed the contract for remain ID with race officials.
  6. Red Team in  Elim mile 875 (above second from right)!!!



RED TEAM FINISHES 4th - we watch the finish live!!!


  1. Into White Mountain in 4th place.  How did she do that???  Guess the benefit of great long distance training as well as the 24hr coming at the halfway point!!!
  2. Out of White Mountain in 4th Place...
  3. Ten miles to go, still in 4th Place!!!  Have we passed the "blow hole" yet???




Chena was a member of the winning Black Team in Yukon Quest 2018, and has run ID three times, calls attention to facts found on the Iditarod website.  Differences in the races are profound...
All in all, she notes:  "I prefer ID because it tests our ability to concentrate" although admitting that YQ is more fun for dogs.  "As a team, we were really happy all the time" in 2018, she stated.