Quest musher files protest over forced withdrawal

Posted: Thursday, March 14, 2002

FAIRBANKS (AP) -- A musher who was forced to scratch from the Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race has filed a protest.

Joran Freeman of Two Rivers feels he was unjustly removed from the race. He wants an apology from the Quest and his $1,000 entry fee refunded.

Freeman was in third place about 100 miles from the finish line when his team quit on him. He returned to the Braeburn checkpoint, where Race Marshal Mark Lindstrom told him to scratch or be disqualified.

Freeman said he wasn't given the option of resting his dogs some more and then continuing on. He argues he should have been allowed to rest because his dogs were deemed fine by Quest veterinarians.

Freeman's complaint will be reviewed by the Quest rules committee after committee member Bruce Lee returns from running the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.

This was Freeman's second time running the Yukon Quest. He finished fourth last year and was named rookie of the year. He has also run the Iditarod, placing 32nd, and was runner up for rookie of the year.

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