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With Kobuk 440 victory, Girdwood musher Petit wins every mid-distance sled dog race he started in 2018

  • Author: Tegan Hanlon
  • Updated: April 16, 2018
  • Published April 16, 2018

Iditarod veteran musher Nic Petit with sled dog Pam in Willow in January. (Bill Roth / ADN)

Girdwood musher Nicolas Petit and his dog team notched another victory early Sunday, winning the Kobuk 440 in Kotzebue.

"Par for the course for this season," Petit told radio station KNOM. "These dogs are kicking butt."

Petit, a 38-year-old ski bum turned competitive musher, won every mid-distance sled dog race he started this year.

The grand prize of Alaska mushing eluded him, however. About three-quarters of the way into the 1,000-mile Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race in March, Petit seemed in command. But a snowstorm sent him off course. He lost his lead, placing second to first-time winner Joar Leifseth Ulsom of Norway.

"I'll be thinking about that wrong turn for probably the rest of my life," Petit said soon after he finished the Iditarod.

The Kobuk 440 is the last major sled dog race of the season. Petit and 15 other teams started the race Thursday and traveled from Kotzebue to Kobuk and back in Northwest Alaska.

Petit and his seven-dog team finished the race at 12:08 a.m. Sunday, three hours and 21 minutes ahead of the next musher, Tony Browning of Nenana.

Live - Watch 2018 Kobuk 440 Champion Nic Petit's Dog Team Lunging at the Finish Line in Kotzebue, Alaska

Blazing fast team of Nic Petit lunging and barking at the finish line of the 2018 Kobuk 440 “Toughest Sled Dog Race Above the Arctic Circle”. Midnight in the arctic this time of year is beyond magical with a few hours of darkness following hours long sunsets. Tony Browning should be arriving in a few hours to claim second place with Ellen King anticipated to arrive early morning in 3rd place. #Kobuk440 #mushingAlaska #nonstopAlaska Non-stop dogwear USA Kotzebue Dog Mushers Association Girdwood Mushing Company Girdwood 2 Nome

Posted by Kale Casey Live on Sunday, April 15, 2018

Ellen King (daughter of four-time Iditarod champ Jeff King) placed third and Jessica Klejka, a Big Lake veterinarian, placed fourth.

Petit won $15,000. It was his second Kobuk 440 win. He placed first in 2016 and second last year.

Check the full Kobuk 440 standings here.