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Dave Turner Claims YQ-300 Win, Quest 1,000 Mile Racers Heading Towards Eagle

Sled dogs, wearing red jackets and neon-yellow booties, mush down a snowy trail with the sun low on the horizon over mountains in the background.
A sled dog team mushes along the trail near Eagle. Photo: Whitney McLaren, Yukon Quest; used with permission.

Mushers in the 2020 Yukon Quest are barreling towards warmer weather and the Yukon side of the race as they set their sights on the Eagle checkpoint.

Cold temperatures have caused problems for mushers throughout the race. Unofficially, the current leader Brent Sass told KUAC yesterday that he had to worry about the cold temperatures’ effect on some members of his team yesterday.

“I had to really pay attention to frostbite in a couple dogs because it was really cold, so I was stopping a lot to check that and move flaps around. I think I got it sorted out now.

– Brent Sass

Sass and Phillips checked out of Circle within about 10 minutes of each other yesterday morning. According to the GPS, Sass is leading the pack towards the Trout Creek hospitality stop, with Cody Strathe breathing down his neck, after vying with Michelle Phillips earlier this morning.

Eagle looks like it will bring the mushers slightly warmer weather. Currently -9° with clouds and forecast to be a high of 5° today with seven and sunny tomorrow, the racers may get a small reprieve.

For some mushers, however, a Yukon Quest race is already over. The 300-miler started in Two Rivers, seeing racers mush through Central to Circle, then turn around and finish in Central. Five mushers have finished so far, with Dave Turner taking home first place by a margin of 20 seconds.

Image at top: A sled dog team mushes along the trail near Eagle. Photo from Whitney McLaren, Yukon Quest (2019); used with permission.

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