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4 women in top 10 the strongest female showing ever at Yukon Quest

  • Author: Alaska Dispatch News
  • Updated: December 2, 2017
  • Published February 15, 2017

Paige Drobny leaves the Pelly Crossing checkpoint and crosses to the far bank of the Pelly River last week on her way to a fourth-place Yukon Quest finish. (Sam Friedman / Fairbanks Daily News-Miner)

Behind Matt Hall's impressive come-from-behind victory, the Yukon Quest featured an impressive showing by women, who Wednesday were poised to take four of the top 10 spots, the most in race history.

Fisheries biologist Paige Drobny, 41, of Fairbanks was perhaps the most impressive. A strong second-half run put her in fourth place, up 10 spots from a year ago.

Quest rookie Katherine Keith of Kotzebue, 38, was seventh, her best finish in a 1,000-mile race. Last year she was 31st in the Iditarod.

Another Iditarod veteran, Jessie Royer, 40, was eighth. And Ryne Olson, the reigning Copper Basin 300 champion, finished ninth place at 9:29 p.m. Wednesday.

Before this year, the most women to finish in the Quest's top 10 was three, which happened in 2011 and 1989.

Yukon Quest finishers

1) Matt Hall, Two Rivers, 12:04 p.m. Monday; 2) Hugh Neff, Tok, 7 p.m.; 3) Allen Moore, Two Rivers, 10:05 p.m.; 4) Paige Drobny, Fairbanks, 2:40 a.m. Tuesday; 5) Ed Hopkins, Yukon Territory, 4:28 a.m.; 6) Torsten Kohnert, 9:12 a.m.; 7) Katherine Keith, 11:48 a.m.; 8) Jessie Royer, 3:48 p.m.; 9) Ryne Olson, 9:29 p.m.

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