© 2024 Kansas City Public Radio
NPR in Kansas City
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Mitch Seavey Wins Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, Sets 2 Records

Mitch Seavey poses with his lead dogs Pilot, left, and Crisp under the Burled Arch after winning the 1,000-mile Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, in Nome, Alaska, on Tuesday. Seavey won his third Iditarod, becoming the fastest and oldest champion at age 57.
Diana Haecker

Mitch Seavey has been the first to cross the finish line under the famed burled arch before — he previously won the famed Alaska Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race in 2013 and 2004.

This year he became the fastest and the oldest musher to win the race.

He also beat his son, defending champion Dallas Seavey, who had wins in 2012 and 2014.

In fact, Mitch Seavey shaved several hours off the record that his son set last year.

Seavey won the race, arriving in Nome in 8 days, 3 hours, 40 minutes and 13 seconds, race stats show.

"Fifty-seven used to be old, and it's not anymore," Seavey said during a post-race news conference.

The Seavey family's history goes back to the first Iditarod in 1973 when Mitch Seavey's dad raced in it.

Dan Seavey raced in five Iditarods.

On March 6, more than 70 teams started the 1,000-mile course in Fairbanks.

The Alaska Dispatch News interviewed the winner after the race:

" 'They love speed,' Seavey said of his sled dogs. 'I think it frustrated them to go too slow, so I just let 'em roll. It was scary because I've never gone that far that fast ever, but that's what they wanted to do and maybe it's a new chapter.'

"Seavey's team recorded 10 and 11 mph runs and the separation he built over other racers gave him the flexibility to bank generous rest for his dogs, and himself, as they moved up the Norton Sound coast in the race's final days.

" 'They only know one thing and that's 9.5 to 10 mph and they hit their feet, and they hit their speed and that's what they do. And they trusted me to stop them when they needed to be stopped, and feed them, and I did that, and they gave me all they could. But I guarantee they're tired now,' said the new champion."

With the victory, Seavey gets a $75,000 check and a new truck.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Doreen McCallister
KCUR serves the Kansas City region with breaking news and award-winning podcasts.
Your donation helps keep nonprofit journalism free and available for everyone.