Waerner Leaves For Safety And Nome This Afternoon

Mar 17, 2020

Thomas Waerner's team running at the halfway point in Iditarod.
Credit Zachariah Hughes

Thomas Waerner, the Norwegian musher leading the Iditarod Sled Dog Race, will have to wait till 2 p.m. on March 17 to head back out on the trail to Nome. He arrived at the White Mountain checkpoint at 5:30 a.m. with a huge lead to start his mandated eight-hour rest. Mitch Seavey, who has worked his way past 12 teams to lead the chase pack, drove into White Mountain at a bit before 11 a.m. That’s five hours after Waerner's arrival. Jessie Royer is just a few miles behind Seavey. Following her are Brent Sass, Aaron Burmeister, Wade Marrs and nine other teams mushing from Elim to White Mountain.  

Bethel’s Pete Kaiser arrived in Elim at 10:13 a.m. and is resting his team before heading out. Jessica Klejka is out on the Norton Sound ice mushing to Koyuk. 

The first team is expected to cross the finish line in Nome on the morning of Wednesday, March 18.