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Racers gather in Aviemore for annual husky rally

Huskies are seen racing during the first practice day of the 2014 Aviemore Husky Rally. Picture: Hemedia

Huskies are seen racing during the first practice day of the 2014 Aviemore Husky Rally. Picture: Hemedia


More than 1000 sled dogs are gathering for the famous Siberian Husky Club dog race taking place in the Cairngorms this weekend.

The race on Saturday and Sunday will be the 31th anniversary of the event, which began with only a few teams in the 1980s.

Every year since 1984, mushers from across the UK have gathered in the forests around Aviemore for the biggest event in the British sled dog racing calendar - The Siberian Husky Club of Great Britain Aviemore Sled Dog Rally.

The race is run on forest trails around Loch Morlich, in the shadow of the Cairngorm mountains.

From an original of only 12 teams, the race is now the largest event of its kind in the UK, with over 1,000 sled dogs and 250 mushers.

The race features teams of between two and eight dogs pulling their musher on a sled around a four to seven mile trail.

“If there’s no snow at ground level for the event, the races still go on with mushers using a three-wheeled rig that looks like a tricycle without a seat,” said a spokesman.

“There are eight adult classes and two children’s classes and mushers range from just eight years old to over 60.

Along with the Siberian Huskies, race dogs include Alaskan Malamutes, Samoyeds, Greenland Dogs and Canadian Eskimo Dogs - the pedigree breeds of dogs first bred to pull sleds in Arctic conditions hundreds of years ago.

“The trail is a designated cross-country ski course and is clearly defined.”

The action starts at 9.15am on both days.

 

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