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Allen Moore wins Yukon Quest for third time

  • Author: Tegan Hanlon
  • Updated: February 13, 2018
  • Published February 13, 2018

Longtime musher Allen Moore won the 2018 Yukon Quest sled dog race Tuesday, crossing the finish line in Whitehorse, Yukon, around 7 a.m. AST.

It's his third victory in the notoriously cold and brutal 1,000-mile race between the Interior city of Fairbanks and Whitehorse.

"It's always good to win," Moore told reporters at the finish line in an interview broadcast live on Facebook. "I'll come back next year and try for four."

Allen Moore is the 2018 Yukon Quest champion!

Posted by Yukon Quest - Official Site on Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Moore, a 60-year-old musher from Two Rivers, finished with all 14 dogs he started with. Commando and Dutch, both age 4, led the team across the finish line after roughly 9 days and 20 hours on the trail.

Matt Hall, the defending champion, claimed second place and Laura Neese finished third. Hall reached Whitehorse with a team of 11 dogs around 1:42 p.m. AST, and Neese arrived around 6 p.m. with eight dogs.

Snow was falling in Whitehorse on Tuesday morning and temperatures hovered in the mid-20s.

Moore said the most difficult part of this year's race was the cold. He believed temperatures dropped as low as minus-50.

"The trail was great," he told reporters. "The only thing you had to deal with was the cold. If you could deal with that, it was good."

For his victory, Moore will receive $23,049.33. He also got 2 ounces of gold nuggets for arriving first to Dawson City, the halfway point, the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reported.

The race started Feb. 3 with 26 teams. By Tuesday evening, 11 teams remained on the trail. The rest had scratched or had been withdrawn, including Paige Drobney, who was in the top three for much of the race.

Moore is married to musher Aliy Zirkle. Both will compete in the 2018 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, which will hold its ceremonial start in Anchorage on March 3 and an official start in Willow the next day.

Moore said he will take a team of younger dogs to the 1,000-mile Iditarod and Zirkle will compete with his Yukon Quest team.

"I just got them in shape a little bit," he said.