Thank you to all the volunteers, sponsors and especially SBS for hosting the event. We appreciate the lunch and access to the warehouse!
Every year we get new riders and racers that sign up for the Iron Dog, and we do our best to get them up to speed on what to expect when riding to Nome or on to Fairbanks. Thanks to Woody’s we always have great door prizes for the Rookies, as well as some of the best contingency prizes targeted at rookie participants.
Laurel Hickel along with many volunteers like Dave McKibbon and son, Skip Boomershine and others started the morning off by setting up the warehouse with banners, tables, chairs, coffee and breakfast snacks for the racers.
After our Executive Director (Kevin Kastner) made some introductions and announcements, we were treated to show & tell and some tips from a veteran and 2013 rookie Mike Williams (from the first Alaska National Guard team to successfully complete the Iron Dog). He kindly brought his 2013 Ski-Doo practice sled in for display.
Just before the lunch break, we gave away door prizes from Woody’s, Iron Dog and XPS. Spenard Builders Supply fed everyone some great hamburgers and hotdogs while rookies talked with the Race Marshals, Iron Dog Board Members and watched some replay of the 2013 Live TV broadcast by KTUU.
- Navigation. Sometimes you can’t see where you are going.
- Equipment. Stock snowmachines can survive, but there are tricks to keeping it going for 2,000 miles.
- Gear. Avoiding frostbite is a good idea.
- Fitness. This is an athletic feat and endurance is required.
- Personal hygiene. Peeing at -40F has it’s challenges.
- Media awareness. The camera is always on you…
- Rural Alaska. Know how to be nice to our volunteers, take plenty of cash and always say “Thank you!”
All said, it was a great day and we covered MANY topics that should give our rookies a fighting chance to survive this great race!
Thanks again to: The McKibbon family, Chris Olds, Laurel Hickel, Skip Boomershine, Jim Wilke, Steve Mattila and the SBS Team, Mike Williams, Lake Otis Pharmacy – Joe Vergnetti, LeadDog Helmet Lights, Dale Bart and the Alaska National Guard, Coca-cola of Alaska, Rockstar Energy Drink, HPAK, Kevin Kastner, Jeff Dyer, Jeff Johnson, Woody’s, XPS, Spenard Builders Supply and everyone else who helped out!