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Musher Pete Kaiser became the first person from Bethel and the first person of Yup'ik heritage to win the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race on March 13, 2019 in Nome, Alaska.
Zachariah Hughes / APRN

When Bethel’s Pete Kaiser crossed the Nome finish line to win the Iditarod, it was only him and eight dogs on his team. But the community of Kaiser fans across the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta felt like they were a part of the victory. KYUK talked with Kuskokwim mushing leaders about why that is.


Zachariah Hughes

Jessica Klejka, racing in the 2019 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, will be on her way to Nome from White Mountain at 10:40 a.m. She got to the checkpoint for her 8-hour rest at 2:40 a.m. on Friday, March 15.

Victoria Hardwick made it through the Norton Sound shore ice yesterday, arriving in Koyuk this morning at 6:20 a.m. 

There are currently 26 mushers who have made it to Nome.

Two Bethel Teams Left in Iditarod Race

Mar 14, 2019
Ben Matheson

About half the Iditarod mushers in this year’s race have made it to Nome, including Bethel’s finest musher, Pete Kaiser, who earned his first Iditarod Championship on Wednesday.

After Aniak’s Richie Diehl drove his dogs across the finish line last night to take 11th place, there remain only two Y-K Delta mushers still out on the trail; both are rookies.

Iditarod Sled Dog Teams Continue Into Nome

Mar 14, 2019
Iditarod Rookie Jessica Klejka mushing into Unalakleet on March 12, 2019.
Zachariah Hughes / APRN

Bethel Rookie Victoria Hardwick could make Iditarod history this year. If she gets the red lantern, this will be the first year Bethel mushers have come in first and last in the race.

Aniak musher Richie Diehl finishes 11th in the 2019 Iditarod on March 14 at 1:40 a.m. in Nome, Alaska.
Ashley Glasheen Fairbanks

It may have been 1:40 a.m., but there was still an enthusiastic crowd to greet Aniak musher Richie Diehl when he crossed the Iditarod finish line in Nome Thursday morning in 11th position with nine dogs.


Last Iditarod Musher Makes It To Coast

Mar 14, 2019
Aliy Zirkle mushing into Nome on March 13, 2019, taking 4th place at 5:26 p.m.
Zachariah Hughes / APRN

By Thursday morning there were a total of 14 Iditarod mushers in Nome. The big news is that for the first time in the race’s history, there are three women in the top 10: Jessie Royer, Aliy Zirkle, and Paige Drobny. All three also finished the race with more dogs in harness than any of the top 10 men. 

Iditarod Top 10 In Tonight

Mar 13, 2019
Fans holding out smartphones at the 2019 Iditarod finish on Nome's Front Street.
Zachariah Hughes / APRN

All eyes in Nome are looking for Bib #19. Sled dog musher Aily Zirkle is running to the Iditarod finish line with nothing in her way but wind and snow. She should be in early this evening, sealing a fourth-place Iditarod finish. 

Dozens of fans from Bethel flocked to Nome to cheer on Pete Kaiser to his first Iditarod championship on March 13, 2019.
Zachariah Hughes / APRN

Ron Kaiser, father of Iditarod champion Pete Kaiser, couldn't be more proud. He greeted his son as the Bethel musher pulled beneath Nome's burled arch at 3:39 a.m. Wednesday morning, winning the great 1,000-mile race. KYUK talked with the elder Kaiser Wednesday evening and learned that he hasn't slept since before his son arrived in Nome.


Mushing fans from Bethel (left to right) Ashley Fairbanks Glasheen, Rachel DeHaan, and Madelene Reichard cheer Pete Kaiser on in Nome as he wins the Iditarod Race on March 13, 2019.
Zachariah Hughes / APRN

If you heard a roar early Wednesday morning, it likely came from Pete Kaiser fans cheering across Alaska. The Bethel musher slid under the burled arch in Nome at 3:49 a.m., pumping his arms overhead in victory as he claimed his first Iditarod championship and became the first person from Bethel and the first musher of Yup'ik heritage to win the race. Fans in Kaiser’s hometown of Bethel were running on a proud, exhausted thrill Wednesday after staying up to watch the historic win.


Pete Kaiser Shares Stories From The Iditarod Trail

Mar 13, 2019
Zachariah Hughes

Pete Kaiser spoke with reporters after winning the 2019 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. The first half of the discussion was moderated by Andy Angstman, an Iditarod board member and longtime friend of Kaiser’s from Bethel. You’ll hear a few questions from Angstman before it was opened up to reporters, all in front of several dozen fans and supporters there in spite of the early hour.


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