Yukon Quest: Front runners breeze through Carmacks

A pack of front runners just treated the Carmacks volunteers to a hit and run through the Carmacks checkpoint.There was a flurry of excitement at the recently quiet checkpoint when 7 mushers entered within 30 minutes of each other. The majority collected their supplies, had their dogs examined by the veterinary staff and headed back out on the trail. Many spent only 10-20 minutes taking care of business.Only two mushers chose to stay, Richie Beattie and Kelley Griffin. Willomitzer, Kleedehn, Phillips, Gatt and Pinard are all making their way towards the dog drop at McCabe Creek. Hugh Neff arrived at the Carmacks Checkpoint at 4:56 pm. Hugh quickly went through his drop bags, pulled the hook and started on his way towards McCabe Creek at 5:04 pm.Lance Mackey arrived at the Carmacks checkpoint with a smile on his face and a happy dog team after a great run. Lance told his wife and handler, Tonya, that his dogs looked great. Lance arrived at 1:29, approximately 8.5 hours after he departed Braeburn this morning on the 80 mile run.Lance told reporters that he wasn’t planning on stopping, but the team looked great so he kept going. Lance insists he has no intention of playing the ‘rabbit’ of the race. ‘My goal is to run in the back of the front runners. I’ve been the rabbit for the past few years and it’s time to let someone else put the scent on the trail.’Lance said the trail was great with quite a few twists and turns that excited his dog team. ‘They really like the twisty turny stuff,’ explained Lance. ‘That’s when they get to have fun trying to knock me off the back!’.His plan was to rest for a while at Carmacks. ‘This new checkpoint is great,’ replied Lance. Shortly after, Dave Dalton arrived at 1:59 pm


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