Monday, March 12, 2007

Sprint to Nome

When I last checked the official Web site, Lance Mackey was more than a half-hour behind in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. Now, officials report his team has surged ahead during the final leg. Mackey recently won the 1,000-mileYukon Quest International Sled Dog Race

Mackey left Unalakleet about 30 minutes before defending champion and four-time winner Jeff King and widened the gap on the run to Shaktoolik, where he stayed 5 minutes before setting out across frozen Norton Sound to the town of Koyuk. This leg is often one of the most challenging.

“Why wouldn’t we want to push the pace in the biggest dog race in the world?” said King, when asked about his dogs going 150 miles on the Yukon River into a brutally cold headwind with just five hours rest.

The winner is expected to arrive in Nome on Tuesday or Wednesday.


Sled Dog Action Coalition said...

For Iditarod facts:

zen said...

Does abuse of sled dogs occur? Yes. Is it endemic? No. Is it important to bring awareness to the issue? Yes. But in order to be effective, you must be factual. Suggestion, assumption, and innuendo helps no one, and hurts the legitimate cause if there is one.

Unfortunately that is what I see throughout much of the "" website. That doesn't mean that the Sled Dog Action Coalition (SDAC) is wrong. But it doesn't make the case that they are right either.

Let's take one example - the dragged dog photo on the home page. Click for the larger image. Note how the dogs are walking. Not running. Not in full stride.

Now take note that SDAC says that the dog "may" be dead or unconscious. It also may not be. Take note that SDAC says the musher "may" be asleep. He or she also may not be. They tell us the musher is comfortably lying on the sled. Or is he / she injured?

Does SDAC KNOW here? Or are they assuming? This is the first shot on their site. And it is loaded with assumptions.

We don't know when this photo was taken. What the conditions of the hour, the day, the minute were. We don't know the conditions of the dogs or the driver. All we know is the driver is laying down. And it appears a dog is down. But that's all we know.

SDAC - if you want people to pay attention to what you are doing, you have to stay away from the suggestion and innuendo. You need facts. Frankly I see little of that on your site.