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37 teams vie for glory in 2,000-mile Iron Dog

Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Iron Dog rookies Marcus Jensen, left, and Mike Dropik cross the ice on Big Lake during the start of the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Iron Dog rookies Marcus Jensen, left, and Mike Dropik cross the ice on Big Lake during the start of the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Five-time Iron Dog champion Dusty VanMeter, who won the past two races, embraces his wife Evelyn prior to the start of the snowmobile race at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Five-time Iron Dog champion Dusty VanMeter, who won the past two races, embraces his wife Evelyn prior to the start of the snowmobile race at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth
Start of the Iron Dog, the world's longest and toughest snowmobile race, on the ice at Big Lake on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014. Thirty-seven two-person teams will cover more than 2,000 miles of Alaska wilderness on their way to Nome with a Fairbanks finish next Saturday.
Bill Roth

Marc McKenna and Dusty Van Meter will fire up their snowmachines Sunday in pursuit of something that has happened only twice in the history of the Iron Dog and never in this century -- a third straight championship in what's billed as the world's toughest, longest snowmachine race.

The entire field of 37 teams will face another stiff challenge: Completing the 2,000-mile race across Alaska on some of the worst trail in the history of the race, which started in 1984.

Riders expect to encounter dirt, open water and ice as they race from Big Lake to Nome to Fairbanks. Unseasonably warm weather turned much of the snow to mush, and although low temperatures have returned, not everything is frozen solid again.

Trail conditions are so sketchy the Iditarod, which follows roughly the same trail from Willow to Nome, will decide Monday whether to move the re-start from Willow to Fairbanks. But Iron Dog officials rejected the idea of rerouting the snowmachine race.

The race will begin at 11:10 a.m. Sunday when the team of Robert Gardner and Andrew Milley depart from Big Lake aboard Ski-Doos. Ski-Doo produced four top-five finishes last year, including the winners and the runners-up.

Anchorage's McKenna and Kasilof's Van Meter will again ride Ski-Doos. They'll be the eighth team to leave Big Lake, right behind last years runners-up, Tyler Aklestad and Tyson Johnson.

A victory would tie McKenna and Van Meter with two other teams that racked up three straight victories -- Scott Davis and Mark Carr (1997-99) and John Faeo and Dan Zipay (1986-88).

Van Meter teamed up with Carr to win the 2004 race, and McKenna won in 2008 with Eric Quam and in 2005 with Nick Olstad.

The winners, who should reach Fairbanks sometime Saturday, will collect $50,000 from a $126,000 purse. Another $122,350 is at stake in contingency prizes offered by various sponsors.

Start

Team #

Riders

1

22

Robert Gardner-Andrew Milley, Ski-Doo

2

13

Jason Gundersen-Josh Norum, Ski-Doo

3

10

Mike Morgan-Chris Olds, Polaris

4

18

Chad Gueco-Andrew Zwink, Ski-Doo

5

23

Brian Dick-Eric Quam, Arctic Cat

6

40

Arnold Marks Jr.-Archie Agnes, Polaris

7

8

Tyler Aklestad-Tyson Johnson, Ski-Doo

8

17

Marc McKenna-Dusty VanMeter, Ski-Doo

9

30

Kyle Conner-Jerrod Vaughn, Polaris

10

3

Doug Dixon-Mike Vasser, Yamaha

11

4

Tim Jauhola-Kyle Malamute, Ski-Doo

12

36

Archie Beetus-Ryan Folsom, Polaris

13

7

Aaron Bartel-Scott Davis, Ski-Doo

14

37

Mike Dropik-Marcus Jensen, Polaris

15

27

Tyler Delimont-Larry Jones, Polaris

16

21

Calvin Schaeffer-Gabriel Lie-Schaeffer, Ski-Doo

17

6

Andy George-Brad George, Ski-Doo

18

2

Shane Barber-Ryan Sottosanti, Polaris

19

20

Gabe Bunke-Scott Faeo, Polaris

20

31

Chad Dow-Tim Lessard, Ski-Doo

21

5

Chris Carroll-Ray Chvastasz, Polaris

22

9

Joshua Plumb-Jordan Starr, Ski-Doo

23

11

Tyler Huntington-Todd Palin, Ski-Doo

24

16

Todd Minnick-Nick Olstad, Polaris

25

24

Michael Donovan-Jens Hopson, Polaris

26

29

Russ Griffin-Chris Kruse, Ski-Doo

27

41

Cory Davis-Ryan Simon, Arctic Cat

28

32

Dick Divelbiss-John Witte, Ski-Doo

29

12

Roger Paradise-Eric Watson, Ski-Doo

30

25

Race Price-Erick Smith, Arctic Cat

31

34

Chris Collins-Lawrence Jones, Ski-Doo

32

35

Scot Demientieff-Devyn Walker, Ski-Doo

33

26

Jacob Hartley-Devin LaBarbera, Arctic Cat

34

15

Charlie Potter-Ryan Johnson, Arctic Cat

35

33

Mike Fuller-Eddie Kinn, Polaris

36

38

Doss Daley-Cory Easterling, Polaris

37

19

Steven Boney-Gux Laraux, Yamaha


Anchorage Daily News
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