Rookie California musher scratches from Iditarod

Mar 14, 2013 -- 10:00am


- ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - A 54-year-old rookie musher from California has scratched from Alaska's 1,000-mile Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. Iditarod officials say Cindy Abbott of Irvine, Calif., scratched late Wednesday night at the checkpoint in Kaltag, 346 miles from the Nome finish line. Race spokeswoman Erin McLarnon says Abbott decided to scratch in the best interest of her 12-dog team after she strained a groin muscle. The race began with 66 teams March 2 at a ceremonial start in Anchorage. The competitive part of the race began the following day in Willow 50 miles to the north. Eleven teams have scratched and one musher was withdrawn. Fifty-three-year-old Mitch Seavey won the race Tuesday night, becoming the oldest musher ever to win the Iditarod. Almost two dozen mushers remain on the trail.

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