Knik 200 Rules

Knik 200 Memorial Sled Dog Race


The Knik 200 Joe Redington Sr. Memorial Sled Dog Race was founded by Sally Welch of Eagle River, Alaska. In addition to being a competitive 200 mile race, the Knik 200 continues to be a valuable training race for the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race and is an Iditarod-sanctioned qualifying race.

The Knik 200 Sled Dog Race starts from Knik Lake and follows part of the old Iditarod Trail system to various trails skirting Big Lake into the Willow area to Eagle Quest Lodge (approximately 60 miles from the start). Teams will drop dogs at the lodge if necessary, then continue to Yentna Station (approximately 35 miles further), complete their six hour mandatory layover, return the same way to Eagle Quest and on to the finish line at Knik Lake for an approximate total distance of 200 miles.

All teams must use the officially marked race course.

No Man’s Land will be at the lake’s edge of Knik Lake as marked on the return trail. The official finish will be considered the first dog’s nose across the Finish Line.

Beginning at noon on Saturday, October 3, 2015 race applications will be available online at and MUST be submitted online by a team to be considered an official entry, along with full payment of the entry fee which is $275.

The Knik racing committee strongly urges applicants to provide an alternate contact name with phone number and email address in the event that the musher cannot be reached.

It is permissible for the alternate contact to submit an application on a team’s behalf. It is also permissible for the alternate contact to pay a team’s entry fee, however, the musher must be identified or the entry fee may not be credited to that team and they will risk losing their spot. Alternately, an email may be sent immediately to  info[at]knik200sleddograce[dot]com with the PayPal transaction number, amount of payment, which Knik race the payment is for, and the musher whose fee is being paid.

Payment of the entry fee must be submitted with the online application via PayPal. If a team does not have a PayPal account, or one with funds available for the entry fee, a credit card can be used to pay via PayPal when submitting the application.

A paid-in-full team withdrawing before 0001 hours Alaska Standard Time on December 22, 2015 will be refunded 75% of their entry fee. If a Knik race representative has made every reasonable attempt to contact a musher (or their alternate contact) to refund their entry fee but cannot reach them within 90 days, the full entry fee will be forfeited and deemed non-refundable.

There is a limit of 40 teams. Once the maximum is reached, additional teams may sign up for the waiting list. Teams on the waiting list will be contacted in their sign-up order if and when openings become available to confirm the team’s availability for the race. The Knik race reserves the right to move to the next team on the waiting list if a team cannot be immediately reached. It is permissible for a team to specify an alternate contact to confirm the team’s availability to race, but this must be indicated on the team’s application and the alternate’s name and phone number must be included.

Payment of the entry fee is not required to be on the waiting list. If a team is moved up from the waiting list, then full payment of the entry fee must be made immediately to guarantee their spot.

Mushers must be at least 18 years of age on January 1, 2016. All entrants will also be required to sign race entrant participation release forms provided by the Knik race committee at the time of the race.

The Knik race committee honors censures from all other sled dog racing organizations, and additionally will not accept entry from any person convicted of animal cruelty.

The purse and pay out positions for the 2016 Knik 100 and Knik 200 races will be announced at the mandatory Pre-Race Musher Meeting on January 1, 2016.

Any person or business wishing to purchase a race bib (for $100) at the Mushers’ Banquet and have their name placed on it must do so by December 1, 2015. The Knik racing committee encourages all mushers to sign all of the race bibs at the Pre-Race Musher Meeting to help ensure future support for the Knik races.

All bibs must be returned to a Knik race representative after the race as they will belong to the Knik Sponsors.

The Race Marshal is charged with enforcing all rules and policies as set down by the Race Manager and Race Committee from the start of the mandatory Pre-Race Musher Meeting to the close of the awards banquet or the last team crossing the finish line, whichever is last, in a manner that allows a level playing field on which to compete. The Race Marshal has absolute authority over the interpretation of all rules.

The Chief Veterinarian oversees the health and safety of all dogs entered in the race, is in charge of all dog health and safety issues upon their arrival on Knik Lake Saturday morning until the conclusion of the awards banquet (or in the case of drug testing or necropsy issues, until those issues are resolved) and shall have absolute authority over the disposition of any dog(s) for medical reason(s). Race veterinarians have the right to examine any dog at any checkpoint for any reason during the race.

Race Judges work under the direction of the Race Marshal on all aspects of race rule enforcement and race safety and will be the recognized authority within their assigned area.

Other Race Volunteers, such as checkers, road crossing guards, communications, and other personnel, are not race officials. They will follow the Knik 200 race rules and procedures and not hinder, detain, or interfere with any team’s race effort or provide advantageous help.

The Trail Boss will establish, maintain, and mark the race trail as best as weather and condition allows at least 24 hours before the race begins and will be consulted by race officials in all decisions regarding race trail matters.

2016 RULES
Unless noted on the website or declared by the Race Marshal at the mandatory Pre-Race Musher Meeting, the Knik 200 is governed in accordance to the 2016 ITC rules and further establishes the following rules:

The combined Knik 100 and Knik 200 Pre-Race Musher Meeting starts at 6:00 pm on Friday, January 1, 2016 at the Curtis D. Menard Memorial Sports Center, Wasilla. Only the team driver and one handler will be allowed entrance. Missing first roll call is a mandatory $50 fine. Missing the second roll call is a mandatory withdrawal from the 2016 race.

Please note: dropping dogs in the parking lot of the meeting venue is prohibited.

Drawing for Starting Position
The starting position drawing will be held January 1, 2016 at the Pre-Race Musher Meeting. Mushers will draw for their starting order (bib number) in the order of sign up.

There will be a pre-race vet check on all teams entered starting at 9 am on Knik Lake on race day. Mushers will be required to present proof of current vaccinations. Rabies vaccinations must come from a veterinarian/DVM. Parvo and/or distemper vaccinations must come from a DVM or else receipt(s) must be provided if they were self-administered by the musher.

There will be a DVM on hand to check dogs prior to the start of the race and race personal to check each mushers’ gear. A race veterinarian will also be on hand at the Eagle Quest checkpoint.

The Knik 200 race starts on Knik Lake at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, January 2, 2016. All teams are to be on the lake by 9:00 am.

Teams will depart the starting line at two-minute (120 seconds) intervals; the start time differential between teams will be adjusted during the mandatory six-hour layover.

Teams that do not enter the starting chute or fail to launch at their official start time will be pulled and placed (in order) behind the last team’s scheduled starting position. In these instances, as their penalty, these late teams’ original starting time will stand.

Any team unable to launch within 30 minutes of the final team leaving will be automatically withdrawn from the race.

A team may request (for any reason) to leave behind the last team (without penalty) up to 9:00 am on January 2. Their new start time will then be adjusted to their actual start time.

All teams must use the officially marked race course.

No Man’s Land will be at the lake’s edge of Knik Lake as marked on the return trail. The official finish will be considered the first dog’s nose across the Finish Line.

The total mandatory layover is six (6) hours plus the musher’s time differential. The time differential between teams will be adjusted during the mandatory six-hour layover at Yentna Station.

Mushers must sign in and sign out at Yentna Station.

If your race strategy includes taking more than a three-hour layover or multi-layovers between checkpoints, contact a race official prior to the start of the race; this is to alert race officials that you are not overdue or in distress and will prevent unnecessary search teams being sent out to search for you.

When one team approaches to within 50 feet of another team, the trailing team shall have the immediate right-of-trail upon demand. The leading musher must stop his/her dogs and hold them to the best of their ability for a maximum of one minute or until the other team has passed, whichever occurs first. The passed team must trail the team that passed them for at least fifteen minutes before demanding the right-of-trail to pass.

Using race trail marking stakes for poling is prohibited.

No outside assistance other than for a declared emergency will be permitted. A musher may receive outside assistance in cases of an uncontrolled or lost team; this includes the use of motorized vehicles.

Pacing in any form via outside assistance is prohibited.

From the time they leave the starting chute until they cross the finish line, mushers shall not use any type of electronic or communication device including, but not limited to: cell phone, satellite phone, walkie-talkie, ham radio, iPod Touch, iPhone, iPad, tablet, laptop. The use of privately-owned or public phone lines at official or unofficial checkpoints or rest stops are also prohibited. Use or possession of these or similar communication devices will result in a mandatory disqualification (DQ) from the race.

A musher may carry a personal emergency satellite ELB or SPOT emergency satellite device but if it is turned on or accidentally activated, it will result in a mandatory self-withdrawal from the race. (This rule does not include the mandatory carrying and required use of the Knik race’s supplied SPOT tracking device.)

GPS units not capable of two-way communication are permitted.

Up to two (2) bags may be shipped per team with a maximum weight of 40 pounds per bag. The food drop location is at Eagle Quest Lodge and must be dropped off no later than the conclusion of the mandatory musher meeting January 1. Late food drops will be carried in the musher’s sled. (If the food drop location is changed, the updated location information will be announced on the Knik 200 Facebook page and on the website at before January 1.)

Food drop bags must be secured so that no sharp ends or tie wires will cut or tear the interior of the race volunteer’s vehicle. All food drops will be in a gunny type bag and clearly marked with the musher’s name in English, “Knik 200” and the weight on the outside of the bag. Any form of combustible fuel in the food drop bags is absolutely prohibited.

The Knik race committee does not provide any fuel/HEET. Fuel/HEET must be carried by the musher and may not be sent out in the drop bags. No fuel of any kind will be transported by the Knik race support aircraft or ground support crew. This includes, but is not limited to, all forms of combustible fuels such as hydrocarbon fuels: gas, HEET, kerosene, propane, Isobutene, highly combustible material, firewood, charcoal, etc.

The Knik race committee will supply one bale of straw per team, which will be available at Eagle Quest Lodge.

The Knik race committee will not be responsible for the returning of a musher’s dropped gear, dropped bags, etc. If a musher scratches and a request to the Race Manager is made before the Eagle Quest Lodge checkpoint has closed, personal gear (no dog food, etc.) will be returned to a designated location if, and only if, transportation is available for that dropped personal gear and/or supplies.

Trash must be properly disposed of and may not be left on the trail. The only approved trash drop-off site will be located at the Eagle Quest Lodge. Mushers or their handlers will be responsible for making a reasonable effort to remove the leftover straw and dog feces at each checkpoint.

The Knik race committee demands that every dog participating in the race be treated humanely at all times. Race officials reserve the final say in determining what is considered inhumane treatment and will make their determination on a case-by-case basis if necessary.

Twelve dogs maximum, eight minimum to start. Only two dogs may be dropped from a team for any reason, three or more dropped dogs will require the approval of the Knik Races’ Chief Veterinarian. A minimum of five dogs pulling in harness is required at the finish.

Only one musher will be allowed per team, and no substitution of mushers or dogs will be allowed during the race.

There will be a pre-race equipment check on all teams entered starting at 9 am on Saturday, January 2, 2016 on Knik Lake. Teams must have each and every piece of mandatory gear throughout the race. Possession of those items will be verified immediately before a team begins the race, at every checkpoint, and after a team crosses the finish line. A team missing one or more items cannot officially check into a checkpoint until the missing gear is recovered or has been replaced. In addition, all required mandatory gear must be in functional, working condition.

Mandatory Gear:

  • One winter-grade sleeping bag
  • One axe 22 inches in length with a 2¾ pound minimum head
  • One pair of 252 square inch (minimum) snowshoes
  • Eight dog booties per dog (four may be in use)
  • Dog food cooker stove as per Iditarod rules
  • Functional headlamp (at start of race)
  • SPOT satellite team tracker (to be provided by the Knik race committee).

Additional note: the SPOT tracker must be on and functioning at all times unless it is determined by race officials to be dysfunctional through no fault of the musher.

Only one sled may be used and it must be ITC-approved. At the Race Marshal’s discretion, a second sled may be flown in or substituted if the starting race sled is damaged beyond reasonably safe condition. The fees incurred to transport a new sled will be at the musher’s expense though no official race penalty will be imposed. (The time required to switch sleds will not be credited to the musher.)

Must be in good working condition capable of safely holding the number of dogs intended to be attached to it. If a gangline is poly/plastic there must be a cabled center with no sharp metal exposed. If chain or cable is used, the musher must carry a functional cable cutter.

A minimum of one (1) is required. Two snow hooks are recommended.

The harnesses must be functional, correctly sized, and padded around the neck with no worn-out, rough, or possible chaffing areas, and have a combined 12” of reflective tape or material.

At all times during the race, the musher’s race bib must be fastened to the top or side of the race sled with the bib number clearly visible.

No injectable, oral, or topical drug or herbal supplement which may suppress the signs of illness or injury may be used on a dog. A musher may not inject any substance into their dogs; all injectable drugs and basting are banned during the Knik 200 unless administered by a race veterinarian. No other drugs or other artificial means may be used to drive a dog or cause a dog to perform or attempt to perform beyond its natural ability. (See Iditarod official rules for a complete version and list of banned drugs of this rule.)

Two (2) pounds of dry kibble dog food plus a dual-looped, 14”-18” cable drop line with at least one functional metal snap, with no sharp, frayed or jagged ends is required for each dropped dog.

Dogs will be returned to Knik Lake from Eagle Quest Checkpoint by the Knik race volunteers.

The drop fee is $30.00 per dog. The musher is responsible for arranging for their dropped dog/s to be picked up as soon as possible or within 24 hours of each dog’s return. No dog will be released till the drop fee is paid. (Sorry, no checks. Please have cash or credit card ready.)

Rule infractions may result in an issuance of a warning, individual monetary penalties of up to $500 each, a time penalty incurred for each infraction, censure, or race disqualification. Warnings may be issued by any Knik Race Judge. Monetary and time penalties require the agreement of the Race Marshal.

Disqualifications require the unanimous decision of all Knik Race Judges, the Race Marshal, and the Race Manager. The Chief Veterinarian will be included in all decisions made based upon issues regarding the care, treatment, and welfare of any dog participating in the race.

The Race Marshal has the authority to withdraw a team that is no longer choosing to make, or capable of making, a valid effort to compete. The Race Marshal also has the authority to withdraw a musher whose conduct, in the Race Marshal’s judgment, constitutes a risk to either him/herself, his/her dogs, the dogs of other mushers or other persons.

If a team wishes to withdraw after starting the race and drive their race team home or to a location other than to a checkpoint, to maintain their withdrawn status and not be disqualified (DQ), the driver must send an email to Race Manager to [email protected]. Failure to do so is a mandatory disqualification (DQ) and a one-year ban from the Knik 200 and the Knik 100.

A musher who has scratched, withdrawn, or been disqualified from the race is responsible for arranging for the transportation (and the associated costs) of removing their dogs, gear, and self from the race course in a safe manner.

Any musher may lodge a verbal protest but only at the current or next checkpoint (or Finish Line if that is the first checkpoint following the occurrence of the act or situation to be considered). Protests can only be lodged with that checkpoint’s Race Judge or the Race Marshal. Protests will be accepted or denied by the Race Marshal no later than two hours before the awards banquet.

Following the completion of the race and upon the recommendation of the Race Marshal and/or Chief Veterinarian, the Race Manager reserves the right to censure a musher. A censure may include a warning, either public or private, and may ban the musher from future Knik 100 and/or Knik 200 races.

Good sportsmanship will be observed at all times! Mushers are responsible for the conduct of their dogs, handlers, and representatives from the time they enter Knik Lake Saturday morning until the conclusion of the musher awards banquet.

PLEASE NOTE: If you have any questions or concerns about any of the above rules, or you would like clarification, we encourage you to contact Race Manager at email [email protected].

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