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Story Last modified at 12:41 p.m. on Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Three Chugiak mushers sign up for the Iditarod

Alaska Star staff


Chugiak's Jim Lanier, who missed last year's Iditarod due to injury, will join fellow Chugiak mushers Nick Petit and Jim Suprenant on the trail to Nome this coming winter. The three locals were among 47 mushers who signed up for the race at the annual pre-race picnic in Wasilla on June 25.

A trio of locals were among 47 mushers who showed up at Iditarod Trail Committee Headquarters on June 25 in Wasilla to sign up for the 2012 running of the Last Great Race.

Nick Petit, who was the only Chugiak-Eagle River musher in last year's race, will be back again next winter to try and improve on his 28th place finish. That showing earned Petit the Rookie of the Year award.

Petit races out of Jim Lanier's Northern Whites Kennel in Chugiak, and last year took Lanier's team to Nome after the Chugiak doctor injured his hip.

This time around it looks like the kennel will be sending two teams, as Lanier also threw his name into the hat during the pre-race picnic that served as the first official day for mushers to enter the race.

Mike Suprenant, who also withdrew before last year's race due to medial issues, is healed up and ready to hit the trail as the third Chugiak-area musher to enter the Last Great Race.

Among the big names who signed up alongside Petit, Lanier and Suprenant at the picnic were 2011 champ John Baker of Kotzebue and former champions Martin Buser of Big Lake, Lance Mackey of Fairbanks, Jeff King of Denali and Mitch Seavey of Sterling.

Mushers have until Nov. 30 to sign up for the race, which begins on Feb. 25.

This article published in The Alaska Star on Wednesday, June 29, 2011.