The 2,000-mile Iron Dog snowmachine race started Sunday in Big Lake. The 37 teams will go to Nome and then to Fairbanks, arriving at the finish Saturday.
Dusty VanMeter of Kasilof and Marc McKenna of Anchorage are going for a third-straight title. There have only been two times in race history that riders have won three straight.
VanMeter, who has five titles, and McKenna were in third place as of Sunday night, taking a 14-hour layover in McGrath. They got to McGrath 31 minutes behind the leaders.
Soldotna’s Scott Davis, a seven-time champ, is riding with Aaron Bartel of Anchorage this year. Davis and Bartel are in fifth place and laying over in McGrath. They arrived 46 minutes after the leaders.
Soldotna’s Cory Davis, the son of Scott, also is doing the race this year with Ryan Simons of Alberta. That squad also is in McGrath, arriving 1:29 after the leaders.
Kenai’s Devin Labarbera is doing the race as a rookie. His team was 18th as of Sunday night.