Iditarod Winner Is Race's Oldest Ever

Mitch Seavey scores 2nd victory at age 53

By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff

Posted Mar 13, 2013 6:56 AM CDT | Updated Mar 13, 2013 7:19 AM CDT

(Newser) – This year's Iditarod winner is its oldest ever—and he just happens to be the father of last year's winner, the youngest ever. Mitch Seavey, 53, and his 10 dogs finished the grueling 1,000-mile race in nine days, 7 hours, and 39 minutes, the AP reports. He also won in 2004. The runner-up this year took the No. 2 spot last year, too: Aliy Zirkle crossed the finish just 24 minutes behind Seavey, making it the fourth-closest Iditarod. "You're going to win this thing, probably more than once," Seavey told her.

The two had been in tight competition. "I just now stopped looking over my shoulder," Seavey said after winning. "This is for all the gentlemen of a certain age who think it ends at 50, 'cause it doesn't," he noted, per the Anchorage Daily News. "I gotta go congratulate my lead dog, Tanner ... He’s probably the best I’ve ever had." He wins $50,400 and a 2013 Dodge Ram pickup. Zirkle will receive $47,100. "I was going for it," she said, "but that slippery little sucker, I couldn’t catch him."

Mitch Seavey became the oldest winner and a two-time Iditarod champion when he drove his dog team under the burled arch in Nome on Tuesday evening, March 12, 2013.   (AP/ Anchorage Press/ Alaska Dispatch)
Mitch Seavey became the oldest winner and a two-time Iditarod champion when he drove his dog team under the burled arch in Nome on Tuesday evening, March 12, 2013.   (AP/ Anchorage Press/ Alaska Dispatch)
Mitch Seavey leaves White Mountain in Alaska, Tuesday, March 12, 2013, during the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.   (AP/ Anchorage Press/ Alaska Dispatch)
Mitch Seavey drives his dog team towards the burled arch in Nome, Alaska, Tuesday, March 12, 2013, during the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.   (AP/ Anchorage Press/ Alaska Dispatch)
Mitch Seavey talks to his son Dallas in White Mountain, Alaska, Tuesday, March 12, 2013, during the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.   (AP/ Anchorage Press/ Alaska Dispatch)
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