Fox Lake sledder three peats at Babe Southwick

Fox Lake's Armin Johnson made it three in a row and two in a row with one race on Sunday. Johnson won the Babe Southwick Memorial Race a third year in a row.

Fox Lake’s Armin Johnson made it three in a row and two in a row with one race on Sunday.

Johnson won the Babe Southwick Memorial Race a third year in a row. It was also the second race in a row he won on the old Yukon Dog Mushers Association trails in the Ibex Valley where the race was held.

Temperatures on Sunday were just around the freezing mark, much warmer than Yukon Brewing Twister race he won there in December.

“I was looking at the times and it was over two minutes slower for the winning times,” said Johnson. “It was hotter … Sled dogs like minus 20 – that’s perfect for them. They don’t overheat and learn how to run in that.

“That first race it was almost 30 below and we were only running six dogs then, but the times were all way faster. It was the same trail and the dogs should be in way better shape by now.”

Johnson and his team of 10 dogs completed the roughly 12-mile (19-kilometre) course in 44 minutes and 52 seconds.

Tagish’s Dave Johnson (no relation) placed second at 47:56 and Teslin’s Jerry Joinson placed third at 49:33. Dave and Joinson were also running teams of 10.

Armin wasn’t the only racer to defend a title Sunday. Mount Lorne’s Katherine Sheepway repeated in the skijor event and Armin’s wife Mandy in the recreation class.

Sheepway and her four dogs completed the 12-mile course in 46:06 to be the second fastest overall counting the sleds.

Ibex Valley’s Virginia Sarrazin placed second at 51:17 and Whitehorse’s Magnus Kaltenborn third at 54:47.

Sunday’s race, which was hosted by Dog Powered Sports Association of the Yukon (DPSAY), illustrated the growth of skijoring.

For the first time in recent history – maybe ever – skijorers outnumbers the mushers seven to five in the 12-mile main event.

“I’m not 100 per cent sure that’s ever happened,” said Sarrazin, president of DPSAY. “Magnus Kaltenborn, some of his dogs are injured, so he decided to come skijoring this time.”

“It really seems to be growing, that skijoring,” said Armin. “You couldn’t get me to hook myself up to four dogs on a set of skis, that’s for sure. Yeah, they’re pretty brave for doing that.”

Mandy and her team of six dogs won the six-mile (9.6-kilometre) rec division with a time of 13:26. Kaltenborn finished second at 16:33 and was the top skijorer in the race.

Youngsters also hit the trail – well, about a 100 yards of it – for the kid’s one-dog race.

Harley Kloer placed first at 1:15, Elan Johnson second at 1:21, Mikayla Power third at 1:26 and Bode Johnson fourth at 2:19.

“We’re really trying to get kids involved in the sport and so every race we’ve had this year through DPSAY we’ve put on a little kiddy race afterwards,” said Mandy. “That’s getting to be the highlight for us because it’s fun to watch them and there’s always something exciting that happens.

“Our one little guy, Bode, when the dogs took off somehow his legs came off the runners and he dragged behind a little bit.”

Sunday’s race was originally going to be held at Armin and Mandy’s Yukon Horsepacking Adventures outfit at Fox Lake but was moved to the due to trail conditions.

The trail system at Ibex Valley was once used by the now-defunct Yukon Dog Mushers Association and was originally put in in 1975.

The Babe Southwick Memorial Race is named after female musher who died of a heart attack in 1965 during the race when it was a two-day long distance event.

“Hopefully we’ll get it back on track as a two-day race next year or the year after,” said Sarrazin.

Contact Tom Patrick at

tomp@yukon-news.com

Results

Dog sled (12 miles)

1st Armin Johnson – 44:52

2nd Dave Johnson – 47:56

3rd Jerry Joinson – 49:33

4th Gerry Willomitzer – 55:42

5th Matt Rydholm – 59:34

Skijor (12 miles)

1st Katherine Sheepway – 46:06

2nd Virginia Sarrazin – 51:17

3rd Magnus Kaltenborn – 54:47

4th Cynthia Corriveau – 55:40

5th Jess Wood – 59:18

6th Katherine Sandiford – 59:54

7th Adam Robinson – 1:08:09

Sled and skijor (6 miles)

1st Mandy Johnson – 13:26

2nd Magnus Kaltenborn – 16:33

3rd Kristina Young – 17:07

4th Dominic Firth-Gruben – 18:03

5th Lexi Joinson – 18:10

6th Isabel Firth-Gruben – 18:46

7th Lindsay Caskenette – 21:52

8th Cynthia Corriveau (kicksled) – 22:51

9th Bjorg Skovmand Helmstad – 27:46

Kids one-dog race

1st Harley Kloer – 1:15

2nd Elan Johnson – 1:21

3rd Mikayla Power – 1:26

4th Bode Johnson – 2:19

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Diane McLeod-McKay, Yukon’s Ombudsman and information and privacy commissioner, filed a petition on Dec. 11 after her office was barred from accessing documents related to a child and family services case. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Yukon government rejects Ombudsman requests for documentation filed to Supreme Court

Diane McLeod-McKay filed a petition on Dec. 11 after requests for documents were barred

Buffalo Sabres center Dylan Cozens, left, celebrates his first NHL goal with defenceman Rasmus Ristolainen during the second period of a game against the Washington Capitals on Jan. 22 in Washington. (Nick Wass/AP)
Cozens notches first NHL goal in loss to Capitals

The Yukoner potted his first tally at 10:43 of the second period on Jan. 22

Rodney and Ekaterina Baker in an undated photo from social media. The couple has been ticketed and charged under the Yukon’s <em>Civil Emergency Measures Act</em> for breaking isolation requirements in order to sneak into a vaccine clinic and receive Moderna vaccine doses in Beaver Creek. (Facebook/Submitted)
Former CEO of Great Canadian Gaming, actress charged after flying to Beaver Creek for COVID-19 vaccine

Rod Baker and Ekaterina Baker were charged with two CEMA violations each

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: Are they coming?

One of COVID-19’s big economic questions is whether it will prompt a… Continue reading

Yukon MP Larry Bagnell, along with Yukon health and education delegates, announce a new medical research initiative via a Zoom conference on Jan. 21. (Screen shot)
New medical research unit at Yukon University launched

The SPOR SUPPORT Unit will implement patient-first research practices

The bus stop at the corner of Industrial and Jasper Road in Whitehorse on Jan. 25. The stop will be moved approximately 80 metres closer to Quartz Road. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
UPDATED: Industrial Road bus stop to be relocated

The city has postponed the move indefinitely

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police detachment in Faro photgraphed in 2016. Faro will receive a new RCMP detachment in 2022, replacing the decades-old building currently accommodating officers. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
Faro RCMP tagged for new detachment

Faro will receive a new RCMP detachment in 2022, replacing the decades-old… Continue reading

In a Jan. 18 announcement, the Yukon government said the shingles vaccine is now being publicly funded for Yukoners between age 65 and 70, while the HPV vaccine program has been expanded to all Yukoners up to and including age 26. (1213rf.com)
Changes made to shingles, HPV vaccine programs

Pharmacists in the Yukon can now provide the shingles vaccine and the… Continue reading

Parking attendant Const. Ouellet puts a parking ticket on the windshield of a vehicle in downtown Whitehorse on Dec. 6, 2018. The City of Whitehorse is hoping to write of nearly $300,000 in outstanding fees, bylaw fines and court fees, $20,225 of which is attributed to parking fines issued to non-Yukon license plates. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
City of Whitehorse could write off nearly $300,000

The City of Whitehorse could write off $294,345 in outstanding fees, bylaw… Continue reading

Grants available to address gender-based violence

Organizations could receive up to $200,000

In this illustration, artist-journalist Charles Fripp reveals the human side of tragedy on the Stikine trail to the Klondike in 1898. A man chases his partner around the tent with an axe, while a third man follows, attempting to intervene. (The Daily Graphic/July 27, 1898)
History Hunter: Charles Fripp — gold rush artist

The Alaskan coastal town of Wrangell was ill-equipped for the tide of… Continue reading

A man walks passed the polling place sign at city hall in Whitehorse on Oct. 18, 2018. While Whitehorse Mayor Dan Curtis is now setting his sights on the upcoming territorial election, other members of council are still pondering their election plans for the coming year. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Councillors undecided on election plans

Municipal vote set for Oct. 21

Whitehorse City Hall. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
City hall, briefly

A look at decicions made by Whitehorse city council this week.

Most Read