Large Crowd & Gov. Mills Lead Can-Am Start in Fort Kent; Results
Festive Fort Kent, ME
The Can-Am Sled Dog races had a festive feel when they kicked off in Fort Kent on Saturday morning. Marking the 30-year anniversary of the Can-Am, an enormous crowd turned out at the starting gate to cheer on the 62 teams and over 560 dogs competing in the three races. Organizers of the Can-Am were pleased with the turnout and support this year, Can-Am Planning Committee President Dennis Cyr said “It was one of the largest crowds, if not, the largest crowd we've seen.”
Governor Mills on hand to get things started
Among the many that attended, Maine Governor Janet Mills was in Fort Kent bright and early to partake in the opening ceremony and send off as teams took off into the northern Maine woods. The three races in 2022 were the Can-Am 30, Can-Am 100, and the Can-Am 250. The 250 race is a qualifier for the Iditarod and Yukon Quest races. A purse of $40,000 was up for grabs in this years Can-Am.
Wild weather throughout the weekend
Throughout the weekend the teams faced a wide array of weather conditions from start to finish. On Saturday teams were faced with subzero temperatures to start, then saw winds picking up overnight. Those still on the course on Sunday worked their teams through rainy conditions before crossing the finish line.
Diana Marquis of St. Medard, Quebec won the Can-Am 30 with a time of 2:12.26. Alexander Theriault of Oxford, ME came in second place and Stephanie Roy of Saint-Anne-de-Madawaska, New Brunswick finished in third place.
The 100 race saw teams and mushers crossing the finish line on Saturday evening with Sally Manikian of Shelbourne, NH finishing in first with a time of 7:27.09. Luc Gaudreau from St-Denis-de-Brompton coming in second place and Rico Portalatin of Milo, ME finishing in third place.
In the early hours of Monday morning, Denis Tremblay of St. Zenon, Quebec won the Can-Am 250 with a time of 25:51.12. Not far behind Tremblay was second place finisher Wade Marrs of Brule, WI and Erin Altemus of Grand Marais, MN who finished in third place.