With the rapid approach of a new year, QRILL Pet Mushing Team can finally start to get ready for a new season. The athletes and all their amazing dogs will once again hit the trails and compete in some of the toughest long-distance races there are.
A year out of the ordinary
Looking back at this year, it is safe to say it was a season out of the ordinary. Thomas Wærner won both the QRILL Pet Arctic World Series (QRILL PAWS) and became the 2020 Iditarod Champion. His homecoming didn’t exactly go as planned and due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, it took him and his 16 dogs about three months and a vintage plane to set their feet on Norwegian soil again.
The Alaskan based Norwegian Joar Ulsom might not have won a race this year, but he keeps proving he’s someone to be reckoned with. After this season, he can still be proud of being the only musher in history to finish Iditarod in top-7, in all his eight race-starts.
Dallas Seavey took a different approach to mushing in 2020. He went on screen as the mushing expert and commentator for the pilot season of QRILL PAWS and its live broadcasting. It is safe to say Dallas did a tremendous job! However, despite enjoying soaking up all his inside stories and knowledge around the sport, we can't wait to have him back on the trail.
Read, set, over?
As a result of the lockdown in Norway in March, all big sports event were cancelled, and that also affected the mushing events. With only one day left in the race, the renowned Finnmarksløpet sadly had to come to an end. With two of our great athletes, Marit Kasin and Hanna Lyrek fighting in the top 10, we would, of course, wanted to watch them go all the way to the finish line in Alta, but luckily there will be new opportunities.
Where to find our teams
Starting off the 2021 season, you can follow Marit and Hanna during MUSH Synnfjell and Beskàdes 300.
Joar and his kennel, will once again race the Kuskokwim 300, before heading out on the trail towards Nome at the Iditarod. If nothing changes, we will also have both Dallas and Thomas racing in the great Alaskan race. That will be a trio we don't want to miss!
Femundløpet 650 will be taken on by Marit and Thomas, before she and Hanna set sail for Alta in Finnmarksløpet 2021 - the longest and toughest race Europe has to offer, located in the very north of Norway.
What will 2021 bring?
All our teams have been training in full speed for the upcoming season, despite some uncertainty around the events next year. The dogs and mushers are currently working hard and training to deal with any challenges they might face during a long-distance race. This is to make sure they feel as ready as possible for what's to come. A big focus is also directed at optimizing the diets of the four-legged athletes, so that they can perform at the optimal level over a long period of time.
We know 2021 might be hard and who knows what will happen as a result of the pandemic. With 5 unique personalities and a lot of outstanding dog athletes participating in several different races, we are eager to follow their journey and adventures during the events and we hope you will too!