Four mushers in the inaugural Gichigami Express Sled Dog Race have finished the first two stages of the three-stage race in under nine hours, wrapping up Monday's leg at Devil Track Landing.
Ross Fraboni of Two Harbors continues in the lead. He covered today's 59-mile stage in 4:43. When combined with his first place time Sunday of 3:55, he has run 8:38 over the first two days of the race. Ryan Redington of Wasilla , AK moved into second with a 4:46 finish today. That finish is added to his 3:56 finish yesterday for a two-stage total of 8:42, four minutes behind Fraboni.
Keith Aili of Ray moved from fourth to third Monday finishing the Windigo Lodge to Devil Track Landing trek in 4:48. He ran the first leg in 4:06 for a combined total of 8:54. Frank Moe of Hovland slipped one minute behind Aili at 8:55 after the second day. Moe and his team turned in a 4:59 finish on Monday and a 3:56 on Sunday.
Three mushers finished the second day between 9 hours and 9:10 for overall running time. After two legs, Will Kornmuller of Willow AK was in fifth at 9:02 followed by Erin Redington of Wasilla AK at 9:06 and Ryan Anderson of Ray at 9:08.
Six mushers finished the second day with cumulative times between 9:18 and 9:38. Bruce Langmaid of Kearny, ON finished in 9:18 followed by Nathan Schroeder of Chisholm at 9:20. One minute behind Schroeder was St. Cloud's Michael Bestgen with Vern Schroeder of Warba at 9:30. Tofte's Rita Wehesler finished the second stage with a total time of 9:36 and Ariane Jasmin of Clam Gulch, AK was the final finisher with a cumulative total under 10 minutes at 9:38.
James Wheeler of Clam Gulch, AK was at 10:08 after two days followed by Finland's Blake Freking at 1015. Rounding out the teams were Amanda Vogel of Ray at 10:24. Kevin Malikowski of Outing at 10:31 and Colleen Wallin of Two Harbors at 10:36.
Complete race results including complete first and second stage times are available at www.gichigamiexpress.com.
Capping off Monday's Gichigami activities was a spaghetti feed will celebrate the end of the second leg at American Legion Post 413 in Grand Marais.
The 41-mile third and final leg of the Gichigami takes off from Devil Track Landing at 9 AM Tuesday after the Lions Club Pancake breakfast at Sven and Ole's. The teams will be mushing back to the starting place at Mineral Center. An awards banquet will be held at the Grand Portage Lodge and Casino at 6 PM, Tuesday.