This is the penultimate DeeDee Jonrowe update. So … Congratulations to John Baker, who has won the 2011 Iditarod, in a record time of 8d18h46m. And to Ramey Smyth who finished second in 8d19h50m, the second fastest time ever. And to Hans Gatt, who has finished third. DeeDee is now in 10th place, on her way from White Mountain to the finish, only nine minutes behind Jessie Royer. They are both about 58 miles from the finish, which they’ll cover in about 7 hours. You can see #58 Jessie and #2 DeeDee next to each other on the map at right. They left White Mountain nine minutes apart and they are closer than that now; should be an exciting finale.
I watched the live video stream of Baker coming down Front Street in Nome (left), and man were he and his team *tired*. You think of a sled dog team, you think of magnificent animals flying along the snow. But these guys were just walking, probably 4-5mph, and John was just about nodding off in place. His dogs collapsed in a heap at the finish, as he put bales of straw out for them to sleep on, and fed them, and congratulated them, and took off their boots. That happened before he did any interviews or celebrating.
It was a sunny day in Nome, a balmy 0o, with little wind, and a massive crowd lined the street along the finishing chute:
Our DeeDee still has a fight on her hands, she has a shot at 9th (and being the top woman), and an outside chance at 8th too, but also has mushers behind breathing down her neck… go DeeDee!
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