About 8 years ago the Kuskokwim 300 Race Committee decided to institute a cap of 30 teams but until now that cap has never been met. Interest in the K300 appears to have reached an unprecedented level, with those 30 sign-ups coming within only 10 days of registration opening on October 9th.
As always, the K300 field includes some of the top competitors in distance dog mushing, including 3 past Iditarod Champions (Jeff King (4x), Pete Kaiser and Brent Sass) as well as 4 past K300 Champions (Kaiser (7x), King (9x), Richie Diehl and Matt Failor).
The field is loaded with other perennial top contenders, including Jessie Holmes, Nicolas Petit, Travis Beals, Aaron Burmeister, Cim Smyth and Eddie Burke, Jr. to name just a few. Winner of the 2023 Chief Eddie Hoffman Alaska Airlines Humanitarian Award and 7th place finisher, Jeff Deeter will be on the trail, as well as his wife and kennel partner KattiJo Deeter. But don't get the idea that the list of serious contenders stops there; of the 30 entrants, 19 of them have at least one top-ten finish in a previous K300. Simply put, it is going to be an amazing race.
Another highlight of the 2024 K300 is sure to be a trio of impressive young mushers. Hunter Keefe, a 23-year-old based in Knik, AK, placed 11th in the 2023 Iditarod and gave a serious run at Rookie of the Year honors in that race. 20-year-old Jason Pavila, of Kwethluk, AK was Rookie of the Year in the 2022 K300, taking 8th place. Pavila's buddy Raymond Alexie, also 20 and from Kwethluk, will be running his first race of 300 miles or more but he is coming off an historic season in which he won every race he entered, including every race the K300 Race Committee hosted not called the Kuskokwim 300. These are three to watch!
View the entire roster of 30 teams here.
Mushers who still hope to race in the 45th Annual Kuskokwim 300 may still register and be added to a waitlist. There is no up-front fee to be on the waitlist but if called upon, waitlisted mushers will have 24 hours to commit to racing and pay their entry fee or they will lose their spot. Register here.
Stay tuned for more exciting news from the K300 in the coming weeks!