February 19, 2009; 1400 PST (Dawson City, YT) – Hans Gatt has officially scratched from the 2009 Yukon Quest at 1:41 PM this afternoon. Gatt was scheduled to depart Dawson City at that time, but instead shocked those at the starting gate when he did not restart as expected.
Gatt will be giving a statement and be available to media at 3:00 PM at the Visitor Information Centre in Dawson City.
Meanwhile, Jon Little, William Kleedehn and Hugh Neff are all back on the trail as they make their way toward their next checkpoint in Eagle, Alaska. Sebastian Schnuelle will depart at 2:29 PM local
The three front-runners left the campground in Dawson City this morning. Little departed first at 10:51 AM with a team of fresh looking dogs. Kleedehn departed next at 11:06 with 12 dogs. His dogs were upbeat and ready to hit the trail. Neff was next leaving right on time with 10 dogs.
Race Marshal Doug Grilliot and Head Veterinarian Kathleen McGill were on hand to watch the leaders depart. “The dogs are looking good, really good,” said Dr. McGill. “The teams came into Dawson looking good and they are leaving looking good. Sebastian Schnuelle, and Brent Sass will leave early this afternoon followed by Michelle Phillips at 7:44 tonight and Warren Palfrey and Martin Buser starting at 10:14 PM.
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