Iditarod 2008: King Toying With Mackey?

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We’re already into day 11 of “The Last Great Race” and the two names at the top of the leaderboard remain the same as they have since the first few days. Lance Mackey still leads, and Jeff King still chases. Both men are into White Mountain, with Mackey holding roughly an hour lead.

These two men were the first off the sea ice, and are now setting their sights clearly on Nome, but according to this story over at Eye On The Trail, the official Iditarod Blog, Mackey thinks that King may be just playing with him at this point. He is quoted as saying “wish we had another 24 hour break. I’d definitely take it.” His team is tired, and not as strong as King’s, who seems to be just biding his time, waiting to make his final move. The article also says “Mackey was plainly frustrated; King was serene.” Which is pretty telling about the state of mind of both men.

Despite these reports however, Mackey is hanging tough, and I’m not going to count him out until the race is over. King is a tough competitor, and holds four wins in the Iditarod already, but Mackey keeps moving, and the last stages are shaping up to be some of the most exciting and tense we’ve seen in recent years. currently has Hans Gatt listed in third place, followed by Ken Anderson and Ramey Smyth.

Kraig Becker

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