Nome Kennel Club hosts season’s first dog race
The Nome Kennel Club, America’s oldest, hosted two mushing races last Sunday. Four ten-dog teams competed over a 15-mile course and two eight-dog teams ran the shorter 8-mile race. Temperatures ran just under zero and there was a mild breeze.
Garrick Fuller was fastest in the longer race with a time of 88:28. Valerie Fuller was tops in the 8-mile race.
“There were some fast times, some impressive runs going on there,” said NKC president Neil Strandberg. “I’m glad it turned out as well as it did. I think people who ran were happy with the trail and had a good time.”
The six teams, which ran represented three kennels. The Nugget asked how many more teams there are in the area. “There are a few outside of town that weren’t represented and a couple that have their houses up there near the Center Creek dog lots,” said Strandberg. “I think there are seven or eight kennels here in the Nome area.”
The trail conditions varied from punchy and sugar-bowl-like to faster sections. Strandberg praised the Fullers for their fast runs. “They know what they’re doing and they’ve got a really strong team from that kennel. I’d like to see them do more. I hope our racing is a high point for club members and anybody else who’s interested in it. I did notice a few people who came along to see what it’s all about. I hope to see more at other events.”
“It’s heartening to see the interest that we know is out there in the club,” he said. “We want the club members to take advantage of the opportunity.”
A 20-mile race is planned to be held soon. The start and finish is at the city snow dump off Greg Kruschek Way near the hospital.
10 dog, 15-miles
1. Garrick Fuller, 88 minutes 28 sec
2. Stephanie Johnson, 107 minutes 7sec
3. Diana Haecker, 107 min. 58 sec
4. Nils Hahn, 108 min. 9 sec
8 dog, 8-mile race
1. Valerie Fuller, 46 min. 13
2. Cynthia Barrand, 49 min. 21