Lance Mackey has announced that he will ride in the 2015 Yukon Quest sled dog race in February, marking the four-time champ’s return after a two-year break. Mackey, the only man to win both the Yukon Quest and Iditarod races in the same year twice, sat out the 2014 season after he couldn’t finish the 2013 Yukon.
“Officially entered in the Yukon Quest today. Looking forward to being on the trail with the best mushers in the world,” Mackey wrote on Facebook. He will compete against four-time Iditarod winner Jeff King, 2013 and 2014 Yukon winner Allen Moore, and 2012 Yukon winner Hugh Neff, among other mushers.
Mackey will replace Jimmy Lebling, a musher who had signed up to represent Mackey’s Comeback Kennel but had to resign after he failed to secure sponsorship, according to the Alaska Dispatch News.
The Yukon Quest Sled Dog Race is widely regarded as one of the most difficult sled races in the world. It covers 1,000 miles between Whitehorse, Yukon, and Fairbanks, Alaska, in the dead of winter. The race is set to begin on February 7.
Mackey is also slated to participate in the Iditarod in March. He last won the race in 2010.