Recent post by Aliy Zirkle, this year´s Iditarod 2nd place finisher and fastest woman musher on the Iditarod trail, inspired me to write this post.
Seeing the pictures of her lead dog Quito, small, sweet and humble girl who did an amazing job during this year´s Iditarod and Yukon Quest 1000 mile sled dog races, the most important leader in Aliy´s team and entire season, yet so humble, made me think.
Most of the canine athletes and heroes are like that. To them, it is no big deal, they are often not the pushy dogs, who crave attention, but rather those small, standoffish girls or dogs a random visitor would merely notice when observing a kennel.
It is no difference with our guys. Rapid, the timid girl, who just one day stepped up to do amazingly in lead, Galena, who´s been one of our super leaders since the age of 17months, Tazlina, who, although being a pushy girl, is as humble, when you need to turn to her for help. Seeing her perform this year in the storm in the mountains during Tobacco Trail race, doing the job no other dog was willing or able to do, leading three teams over the mountains, going through the storm in single lead and breaking trail for 11 hours, simply because she knew it needs to be done.
Magneto, the huge dog who is so timid and humble that one nearly did not recognize the talent, dwelling inside. Despite being a bit slower than some of his more athletically built buddies, he emerged to pull hard and never give up, even when the speed was not of his preference.
The skinny Chilli, who would die in harness, soft and gentle Nugget, who just puts his head down and keeps going, or the little girls like Snowy, Ziggi or Krtek, all working their little butts off to contribute to the team.
You´ve got to love these dogs. They create and deserve a huge respect and admiration. I am honored, being able to work with them and be part of the team. They are not only my best friends and family, they inspire me. They are my role-models of humbleness, strength, braveness, heart and determination.
They are my humble heroes.