Fr. Alexander Larson brings snacks to his team at the Bethel midway checkpoint during the Kuskokwim 300 Sled Dog Race on February 13, 2021. Larson placed fourth in the race, and won both the Rookie of the Year Award and the Joe Demantle Jr. and Robert Ivan Award. CREDIT KATIE BASILE / KYUK - Bethel, Alaska
Kuskokwim Mushers Sweep K300 Awards
Local Kuskokwim mushers dominated this year’s Kuskokwim 300 Sled Dog Race, taking four of the top five positions. The region’s local mushers also swept the race awards.
Best In The West
Kuskokwim 300 winner Richie Diehl of Aniak won the Best in the West Award. The award goes to the highest finishing musher from Western Alaska. In addition to his $25,500 race winnings, Diehl took home two round-trip Alaska Airlines tickets to anywhere the airline flies. Diehl made K300 race history as the first musher from a Kuskokwim community outside of Bethel to win the race, and the first musher to win both the K300 and Bogus Creek 150 in the same year. During the virtual K300 awards ceremony, Diehl shared a story about his dog team.
“When they were puppies, my good friend in Aniak, he took care of them while I was at Iditarod one year, and he nicknamed them the ‘Spring Breakers’ because every day was a party. And that’s exactly how they performed during this race. They ran fast and partied hard, so it’s a fun group of dogs. And again, thanks to everybody,” Diehl said.
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