After two previous top-10 finishes, Sass crosses under Burled Arch first
Anchorage, Alaska – Veteran Iditarod musher Brent Sass (bib #27) of Eureka, Alaska, crossed the finish line of the 50th running of the Iditarod in Nome at 5:38 a.m. today, claiming his first Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race championship. Sass wins his first championship in his seventh time competing.
Sass had 11 dogs in harness when he triumphantly crossed the finish line to win the Iditarod 50 title in 8 days, 14 hours, 38 minutes and 43 seconds. Of course, Sass could not have made it the approximately 975 miles from Anchorage to Nome without his teammates: Slater, Pink, Garnet, Marble, Morello, Lucy, Woody, Tock, Capone, Pop, Arlo, Kutuk, Jackson and Draco.
Winning Iditarod 50 comes with the largest percentage of the $500,000 purse for the 2022 race. On his charge to Nome, Sass also won the GCI Dorothy G. Page Halfway Award, The Lakefront Anchorage First Musher to the Yukon Award, Bristol Bay Native Corporation Fish First Award, Ryan Air Gold Coast Award and Northrim Bank Achieve More Award. His winnings from those awards total $13,000 in cash and gold nuggets in addition to 25 pounds of salmon, a gourmet five-course meal, Alaska artwork and a $1,500 donation to charity in White Mountain.
“Brent Sass is not only a bold, tenacious and super tough front-runner but also a keen strategist. In addition, the dedication, emotional connectivity and love for his team is readily apparent as it really felt like his dogs also had abstract thoughts of pride and joy as they crossed the finish line,” said Iditarod CEO Rob Urbach. “After finishing near the top of the pack the last two years, Brent will remember this moment as the moment of his highest power. We congratulate Brent and his team of fearless canine athletes on winning the 50th running of the Iditarod and look forward to seeing him grow along with our race as we enter our next 50 years.”
As the winner of Iditarod 50, Sass adds more mushing accolades to his career. He is a three-time Yukon Quest champion and six-time Iditarod finisher. His best finish in the Iditarod was last year, coming in third. That followed a fourth-place finish in 2020. He won the Iditarod’s Rookie of the Year Award in 2012, finishing in 13th place in his first year competing. He is also a previous winner of the Herbie Nayokpuk Memorial Award. This award is voted on by the checkers in the checkpoints as the musher who best epitomizes the spirit of sportsmanship and humanitarianism while competing in the Iditarod.
Mushers currently on the Iditarod trail will continue to make their way to Nome. The race finishes when the last musher crosses the finish line, claiming the Red Lantern, a longstanding Iditarod tradition and symbol of perseverance.
For more information or to follow the race, visit www.Iditarod.com.