Spectators watch leg one runners embark from Broadway on their long night's journey to Whitehorse. JB

Running with the fish


The Dead Salmon Heads don’t debauch like they used to.
Instead of the night of partying that had been implicitly promised to me through countless crazy strories of past exploits, we all ran under 10 minute miles and ended with a respectable team time.
Not to say that this leg nine runner didn’t have a fantastic time. Jovial quips permeated the air. “Start out easy, then slow down,” coached Tim Fairbanks, DSH secretary and support driver. “The combination of all of us might make a functioning brain,” joked Korsmo, who ran leg three.
Other than these motivational thoughts, a certain ballerina outfit served as incentive to run fast. “I’m going for the tutu,” said DSH Angela Horvath, a Park Service employee who attempted to pass the chiffon-clad runner during the first leg.

A fish out of water: Mike Korsmo holds out some liquid refreshment for Dead Salmon Head Angela Horvath durint leg one of the relay. Right, DSHers Pete Lucchetti, Steve Sue Wing and Denise Hill share a moment at the finish line in Whtehorse. EP

While Horvath ran the steep portion of the relay in under 1.5 hours, she didn’t quite meet her original goal. “Couldn’t catch the tutu, she was so flippin’ fast,” she reported after her leg. The “tutu” turned out to be a dentist from Whitehorse who works as several Skagway residents’ tooth fairy.
The leg nine runner for team number 129, Take No Prisoners, directed a motivational thought toward me during my portion. “Out of my way,” said the muscular macho man in a singlet. I must have rudely been using too much oxygen.
Pre-race jitters prevailed through the night. “I’ve never been so nervous,” said Becky Jensen before running leg two for the Alaska Marine Lines women’s team.
“I can’t stop feeling like I have to pee,” said Courtney Wilson before running the final leg for Team SNAFU.
A cross-country meet in Haines on the afternoon of the relay began didn’t deter Emily Herbig, Amanda Jensen and Paige Hahn from competing and taking a ferry back to Skagway and running on the AML team.
“There was positive energy from all of the teams,” said Slackmasters leg eight runner Chad Dillon. The Skagway Chilkat Guide running on a Haines team reported seeing “nothin’ but cheering.”
Many people who had competed in other international road relays told Dillon that the Klondike Trail of ‘98 relay was comparatively more enjoyable.
Next year, the Dead Salmon Heads plan on the party pendulum swinging their way again. Instead of having different cars shuttling runners, they plan on bringing back Ruby (the Packer Expedition bus) as the party/support vehicle, said Korsmo.

Buckwheat Donahue checks in a runner who has seen the movie "This Is Spinal Tap" one too many times, and the second group of runners set their watches as they take off on the steep 8.8 miles of leg one. JB

Klondike Trail of ‘98 Road Relay 2006

Local Results
Skagway-Haines team times, category placement
Mixed - 18. WP&YR Highballers, 16:05:17; 28. Dead Salmon Heads, 16:34:38; 30; 30. Haines Slackmasters, 16:52:39; 40. radracers, 17:22:13; 43. Team SNAFU, 17:45:17; Women - 16. Alaska Marine Lines, 18:28:20.

Higballer Jeremy Simmons crosses the Skagway River bridge ahead of his pack, and SNAFU's Kyle Fairbanks passes a female runner on the first hill out of Skagway. JB

Individual times by legs, overall placement:
Leg 1 – 45. Tony Lawrence, radracers, 1:20:08; 76. Angela Horvath, DSH, 1:27:34; 80. Marnie Hartman, Slackmasters, 1:28:15; 82. Jeremy Simmons, Highballers 1:29:02; 83. Tiffany Everett, AML, 1:29:42; 106. Kyle Fairbanks, SNAFU, 1:40:36

Leg 2 - 33. Mark Lohnes, DSH, 56:02; 37. Nick Akers, radracers, 56:23; 44. Craig Jennison, SNAFU, 1:02:40; 51. Liz Ruff, Highballers, 58:59; 111. Rebecca Hylton, Slackmasters, 1:18:53; 121. Becky Jensen, AML, 1:27:34

Leg 3 - 61. Matt Russell , Highballers, 1:13:11; 68. Mike Korsmo, DSH, 01:14:43; 80. Jeffrey Hitt, radracers, 01:20:59; 74. Dawn Brown, AML, 1:16:57; 76. Cindy O’Daniel, SNAFU, 1:19:26; 119. Aldeana Brainard, Slackmasters, 1:41:42

Leg 4 - 12. Curt Dodd, Highballers, 1:35:48; 32. Alissa Henry, Slackmasters, 1:46:34; 37. Mike Catsi, DSH, 1:48:51; 70. Emily Herbig, AML, 2:01:40; 108. Kerry Johnson, radracers, 2:27:01; 116. Deb Potter, SNAFU, 2:37:53

Leg 5 - 63. Jenni Brown, DSH, 2:03:07; 65. Mary Riendeau, SNAFU, 2:03:38; 76. Kori Goertz, Highballers, 2:06:24; 85. Calvin Roaskum, Slackmasters, 2:11:25; 101. Kendra Benson, Radracers, 2:19:45; 121. Katie McDonnell, AML, 2:41:49.

Leg 6 - 13. Liam Cassidy, Slackmasters, 1:51:21; 50. Joe Stephenson, radracers; 72. D.J. Jones, SNAFU, 2:27:09; 94. Stephen Sue Wing, DSH, 2:39:01; 104. John Thomas, Highballers, 2:47:03; 105. Candi Ketterman, AML, 2:48:00

Leg 7 - 21. Shanna Vetter, Highballers, 1:09:37; 29. Peter Lucchetti, DSH; 40. Vickey Moy, radracers, 1:17:30; 69. Teresa Wilson, AML, 1:24:03; 93. Jenny Seifert, Slackmasters, 1:33:13; 105. Shakey Smith, SNAFU, 1:39:15

Leg 8 - 17. Phillip Clark, DSH, 1:32:03; 38. Mike Moe, SNAFU, 1:39:14; 47. Heather Seale, Highballers, 1:42:04; 49. Ivanca Jones, Slackmasters, 01:42:41; 77. Paige Hahn, AML, 01:50:14; 113. Lyndsey Baker, radracers, 02:15:22

Leg 9- 17. John O’Daniel, SNAFU, 01:23:33; 61. Cody Ellingson, radracers, 01:36:12; 76. John Briner, Highballers, 1:42:53; 80. Emily Palm, DSH, 01:44:18; 93. Christie Murphy, AML, 1:47:18; 106. Jon Ruth, Slackmasters, 1:55:27

Leg 10 6. Ben Seale, Highballers, 1:20:16; 8. Mike Shelby, Slackmaster, 01:23:08; 34. Michael Healy, radracers, 01:33:49; 53. Amanda Jensen, AML, 01:41:03; 83. Courtney Wilson, SNAFU, 1:51:53; 87. Denise Hill, DSH, 1:54:16.

Complete results at