A Close Finish: Iditarod 2014 Winner Announced
The final days of the 2014 Iditarod have been marked for the top finishers by howling winds, poor snow conditions, and a neck and neck race to the finish line in Nome. In the end, Dallas Seavey, 26, of Willow, Alaska, who, in 2012, became the youngest person to ever win the race, crossed the line first at 4:04 a.m. this morning on Tuesday, March 11, 2014. He completed the 1,000-mile course a mere two minutes ahead of second place finisher, Aliy Zirkle, 44, of Two Rivers, Alaska. In spite of the notably difficult trail conditions this year, Seavey still managed to finish the race in record time: eight days 13 hours 4 minutes and 19 seconds— more than five hours faster than the previous record held by 2011 race winner, John Baker.
According to the Anchorage Daily News, Seavy didn’t realize he had actually won when he crossed the finish line. When asked by a reporter, “ Dallas, did you think you could do this?” he allegedly replied, “What exactly did I do?” Seavy, apparently, thought that he was still behind Jeff King and Aliy Zirkle.
Seavy and Zirkle’s sprint to the finish was the second closest in the 42 year history of the race. The other, and even closer finish, being in 1978, between Rick Swenson and Dick Mackey, when both mushers came down Front Street racing side by side. Mackey won by a nose, literally, one second ahead of Swenson.