It was one of several special awards presented to Iditarod mushers at the finishers banquet in Nome. Here’s a look at who else received honors.
Twenty-nine mushers completed the race from Willow to Nome.
Twenty-nine out of the original field of 33 mushers finished this year’s race. Jason Mackey, brother of the late mushing icon Lance Mackey, was the last to cross the finish line.
A handful of mushers are still continuing their journey along the Norton Sound coast.
The Safety Roadhouse is one of the race’s quirkiest stops, and it marks the beginning of the end of the race trail. For snowmachiners, tourists and mushers, there’s nowhere quite like it.
Less than 70 miles from finishing his first Iditarod, rookie Hunter Keefe spent the night riding out a wicked windstorm in an emergency shelter. It turned out to be the finishing touch on a race Keefe said was a “joyride all the way.”
Eddie Burke Jr. is 2023′s rookie of the year, finishing seventh as a wave of top finishers rolled into Nome. But the last stretch wasn’t much fun for some of them.
Cheering crowds, sunshine and a well-deserved break awaited mushers as they crossed the Iditarod finish line.
“It shows that in some parts of rural Alaska, mushing’s not dying,” said Aniak musher Richie Diehl, who placed third after champion Ryan Redington and second-place finisher Pete Kaiser.
Redington rose to the front of this year’s field of 33 mushers to claim his first Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race victory.
Redington, grandson of the Iditarod’s founder, is the first member of his family to win the race in its 51-year history. “It means everything to bring that trophy home,” he said at the finish line in Nome.
With Ryan Redington still a few miles out from being the first musher to reach the Iditarod finish line, a crowd amassed around the race chute Tuesday awaiting his arrival.
Ryan Redington, grandson of the race’s founder, holds the lead and a slight edge, but two Kuskokwim River mushers — 2019 champion Pete Kaiser and Richie Diehl — are nipping at his heels.
Sass, who scratched Saturday at the Eagle Island checkpoint, told Iditarod Insider he’d been contending with illness and three cracked teeth.
With teams off their 24-hour rests, front-runners are bunched up and heading toward the Yukon River.
Many of the front-runners chose to take their daylong layover at Takotna, a checkpoint renowned for its hospitality.
The Iditarod also saw its first scratch from Healy rookie Jennifer LaBar, who’s contending with a severe hand injury.
As mushers cross the Alaska Range, warm temperatures coaxed many teams into mid-day rest ahead of the Rainy Pass.