Tuesday, March 16, 2010
My Heroes Have Always Been....Mushers
Has a nice ring to it, doesn't it? Not quite a Willie Nelson ring, top ten ring, but I like it better. Someday I'll have to do a post on my obsession with and love for dogsledding, for mushing, But suffice it to say, tonight, that I am one VERY excited girl. Lance Mackey just won his 4th consecutive Iditarod in Nome today, and I couldn't be happier. There are many mushers I root for, for many different reasons, every year, but ever since I met Lance four years ago in Alaska before his first win, I have been rooting for him. He is the most down-to-earth guy I have ever met. He reminds me very much of my brothers, my brothers' friends, people I grew up with, people around here. He could live here, in Allegany County, and fit right in. There is nothing high and mighty, nothing pretentious, about him (really, there isn't about MOST mushers - that's one of the things I like most about them) Lance is NICE. Back four years ago, I felt like he really DESERVED a win. He's been through a lot - cancer, among a lot of other tough things. There are just good stories around his life, his rise through the mushing world. He's tough. He's strong. He's a good guy. And I really, really like him, and I'm really, really glad he won the Iditarod today. GO Lance!! He joins the ranks of a few others who have won 4 times, and one other musher has actually won 5 times, but NONE of them have been consecutive wins like Lance's. And I don't think any of those wins came back to back with wins or near-wins at the Yukon Quest, as Lance's have been. Two of the toughest sled dog races in the world, back to back, and Lance has been there. And done that. And done it again. I'm so very happy for him. And I LOVE the two quotes I just read tonight:
"He could take your dogs and beat his team with your dogs. That's how good of a musher he is," said Hugh Neff, who's currently in sixth place and taking his 8-hour stopover.
Zach Steer (current 12th) said: "He's what our sport needed a few years ago. Came along at the right time. People love him because he's genuine."
He is genuine. A genuine hero, in my book.