For Immediate Release
Canada's Iditarod Veteran Ready to Race to Nome
Stronger, higher, faster may be the Olympic motto, but for Canada's only
woman veteran of the world famous Iditarod dog sled race, these words embody
her hopes for this year's grueling 1780 kilometer sled dog race from Anchorage to Nome, Alaska. Karen Ramstead, 39, of Perryvale, Alberta, and
her team of 16 purebred Siberian Huskies leave the starting line in Anchorage on March 6, 2004 with the goal of arriving in Nome in less than
12 days. If she's successful, she'll have set a new record for the fastest
finish with a team of Siberian Huskies. The current record for a purebred
Siberian Husky team is 12 days, 0 hours and 8 minutes set by an American
team in 1998.
"This is the year to see what my dogs and I are really capable of. We've
taken three years to fine-tune our training and race strategy, building on
the experiences of our previous Iditarods. The dogs are a great mix of
rookies and Iditarod veterans, and most have been with me since they were
born. It's the best team I've ever worked with and we're all anxious to
really race the Iditarod trail this year." said Ramstead.
Ramstead is the only Canadian woman to have finished an Iditarod and the
only Canadian to do so with a team of Canadian Kennel Club registered dogs.
Her finishing time in 2001 was just under 15 days. She had hoped to go for
the record in 2003 but she fell ill and had to withdraw after completing
over 1300 kilometers. This is her fourth Iditarod.
During the Iditarod, Ramstead and her team will travel through some of
Alaska's most beautiful and challenging wilderness, enduring temperatures
that can dip below minus 50C. While on the trail, Ramstead is the sole
provider for her team as race rules prevent drivers from receiving outside
assistance. She is the coach, cook, medic, massage therapist, and sport
psychologist for 16 highly trained endurance athletes. Together, they hope
to make this year's run to Nome one for the record books.
To contact Karen Ramstead before race
1 907 495 6346 or 1 907 841 3651
For background on Ramstead and her dogs
For background on the Iditarod dog sled race
To follow Ramstead's progress during the race