Whitehorse Daily Star

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VET CHECK – Yukon Quest head veterinarian Nina Hansen looks over Brent Sass' dogs after he arrived early Tuesday morning in first place in the 2022 Yukon Quest on Feb. 22.

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Photo by Whitehorse Star

ON THE TRAIL – Jerry Johnson competes in a Dog Powered Sports Association of the Yukon (DPSAY) race on Jan. 16, 2022.

Yukon Quest names head vet and race marshal

The Yukon Quest International Association (Canada) has named the head vet and race marshal for the 2023 races.

By Whitehorse Star on September 13, 2022

The Yukon Quest International Association (Canada) has named the head vet and race marshal for the 2023 races.

According to a Yukon Quest press release, Dr. Kate Foster of Valdez, Alaska, will be the head veterinarian for the races. Foster has previously volunteered with the Quest in 2004, 2006, and 2010 through 2014.

“I love sled dogs and I love the Great (White) North,” Foster said. “(I’m looking forward to) seeing old friends and getting back to working with sled dogs.”

For Foster, excellence in dog care revolves around attention paid to each dog.

“The most important aspect of excellent dog care is the musher’s attention to each individual dog,” Foster said. “Providing quality nutrition, quality supplements … and watching for the earliest signs of injury and illness. Prevention is always the best medicine.”

Foster added that there are many examples of mushers diligently caring for and massaging their dogs on cold, dark and windy nights despite their own fatigue during races like the Quest.

The Quest also announced Jerry Joinson as the choice for race marshal for the 2023 races. Joinson finished the 1000 mile race in 2011 and 2014.

“I want to see this great race from the other side of the fence,” Joinson said, adding that watching the teams and being around like-minded people adds to the experience.

For Foster, Joinson and their teams, a successful race will be one where all the dogs and mushers have a competitive, challenging and safe race.

“I would like to see every team cross the finish line,” Joinson said.

The Yukon Quest 450 starts at Shipyards Park in Whitehorse on Feb. 11, 2023, followed

immediately by the Yukon Quest 250 and Yukon Quest 100.

The YQIA also announced that it will be holding a rookie workshop on Oct. 22. It is free for registered Yukon Quest mushers. Members of the public are welcome for a $5 fee.

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