Mitch Seavey has won his second Iditarod, crossing beneath the Burled Arch in Nome three miles ahead of second-place finisher Aliy Zirkle. It was one of the closest Iditarod finishes ever, with Zirkle coming in just 23 minutes and 39 seconds behind Seavey.
The closest Iditarod finish was in 1978, when Dick Mackey beat Rick Swenson by one second.
The race was neck-and-neck all the way from White Mountain, where Zirkle had gained considerable ground on Seavey after once trailing him by two hours. Zirkle came into the checkpoint just 13 minutes behind Seavey. By the next checkpoint in Safety, 40 miles away, Seavey had extended his lead to 24 minutes, about a 3-mile lead. He maintained this lead to the finish.
Last year, Zirkle came in second place behind another Seavey–Dallas Seavey, Mitch’s son.
Jeff King appears to be heading for a third-place finish. He is currently halfway between Safety and Nome with more than a five-mile lead on the next musher, Dallas Seavey. Ray Redington Jr., Joar Leifseth Ulsom, and Nicolas Petit are battling for fifth place.