Iditarod Day 10: Kaiser first into White Mountain, Ryan Redington scratches

Photo of Pete Kaiser courtesy of KTUU viewer Joanna Wassillie.
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ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - 10:20 a.m. Update:

Iditarod officials say veteran musher Ryan Redington, of Skagway, scratched Tuesday morning. He officially dropped from the race at the Shaktoolik checkpoint at 9:25 a.m.

Redington had nine dogs with him according to the statement issued Tuesday, and the decision to scratch was made "due to the well-being of his race team, which is his No.1 priority."

Redington is the third musher to scratch on Day 10, including Brett Bruggeman and Niklas Wikstrand.

8:10 a.m. Update:

Pete Kaiser appears to have reached the White Mountain checkpoint and is now resting, according to the Iditarod trail tracker GPS system.

There, Kaiser will take a mandatory 8 hour rest ahead of the final push to Safety and then, ultimately, the burled arch finish line in Nome, Alaska.

Joar Leifseth Ulsom is trailing Kaiser by several miles, which means his 8 hour rest will end after Kaiser, allowing him to push earlier on unbroken trail.

Out of the previous checkpoint of Elim, Kaiser checked out at 12:41 a.m. Ulsom, trailing him, left just 5 minutes later at 12:46 a.m., meaning Kaiser was able to pull ahead further during the stretch.

Ulsom arrived in White Mountain 41 minutes after Kaiser, at 8:46 a.m.

In third is veteran musher Jessie Royer. A full list of standings, including race times and other mushers locations, can be found on the Iditarod website.

Original Story:

Following a tumultuous day of racing, which saw the race leader unexpectedly drop out of the race, three mushers are dashing to the finish line.

According to the Iditarod GPS tracker, Pete Kaiser, Joar Leifseth Ulsom, and Jessie Royer checked out of the Elim checkpoint, and are headed to White Mountain.

Closest in contention are Kaiser, an Alaskan musher, who is in the lead, and Leifseth Ulsom, a Norwegian, who is close behind him. Royer is also on the way to White Mountain, but miles behind the other two.

Previous race leader Nic Petit scratched yesterday after a disruption with his dog team. He maintained a steady lead out of Shaktoolik before his dogs got into a fight, and then quit racing. This was the same stretch of trail that Petit lost his commanding lead on in 2018.

Now, leader Kaiser is looking to maintain the edge over 2018's champion, Leifseth Ulsom. The next checkpoint the mushers will reach, White Mountain, has a mandatory 8 hour rest, before racers can proceed to the finish line.

Day 10 also marked scratches, when Iditarod rookie musher Niklas Wikstrand, of Nes, Akershus, Norway, scratched at the Kaltag checkpoint just after midnight.

Veteran musher Brett Bruggeman, of Great Falls, Montana, scratched at the Shaktoolik checkpoint at 7:20 a.m. Tuesday.

Wikstrand had 12 dogs with him at the time he decided to scratch, and Bruggeman had 11.

In statements from the Iditarod, officials said Wikstrand and Bruggerman both "made the decision to scratch in the best interest" of their teams. He had 12 dogs with him at the time he decided to scratch.

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