OK, bad news first: Rookie Cindy Abbott of Irvine, CA, has scratched in Kaltag. Abbott suffered a muscle strain in her shoulder early in the race and felt that scratching was in the best interests of her and her dog team. She had 12 dogs in her team.
Abbott suffers from Wegener’s Granulomatosis, an incurable form of vasculitis. The rare disease obviously hasn’t slowed her down, however, as she climbed Mt. Everest not long after being diagnosed. A year later, she was training with Lance Mackey for the Iditarod.
Abbott is the 12th musher to scratch in this year’s race. Her scratch means that Bob Chlupach is now carrying the Red Lantern.
Now the good news: Newton Marshall’s dog Mae has been found. She was found by a snowmachiner in the Big Lake area, over 150 miles from where she got loose. Mae belongs to musher Jim Lanier from Chugiak, a suburb of Anchorage, and it is believed she was trying to find her way home. Good dog!