Mackey first to reach Iditarod halfway mark
In this March 5, 2013 photo, a musher and dog team cross the ice between the Rohn and Nikolai checkpoints in Alaska during the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. (AP Photo/The Anchorage Daily News, Bill Roth)
Published Thursday, March 7, 2013 1:10PM EST
IDITAROD, Alaska -- Four-time champion Lance Mackey is the first musher to reach the halfway mark in the 1,770-kilometre Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.
Mackey last won in 2010. He pulled into the ghost town of Iditarod at 8:36 p.m. Wednesday and was awarded US$3,000 in gold.
Sonny Lindner was second into the checkpoint, and another four-time champion, Jeff King, was third.
None of the race leaders has satisfied a mandatory 24-hour break except for four-time champion Martin Buser who was in the lead after being first out of the chute at Sunday's start. He went on a mega-run of about 273 kilometres before resting his team for his 24 hours. He is now well-positioned in fourth place.
Michelle Phillips of Tagish, Yukon, was the top Canadian in 19th place.
From Iditarod, mushers turn their teams west toward the frozen Yukon River.