Irving Woodlands Can-Am Crown 250

Driver: Bob O'Hearn
For complete race results, check out the Can-Am website.
View photos from the race

The original plan had been to field a team for the UP200. In hindsight, running the UP200 might have worked to our advantage as the event was cut short due to inclement weather. At least we would have finished : )

Toward the end of August, Can-Am 250 entries and the price of gas were increasing at about the same rate. We quickly realized that spending so much time on the road as it is just to train the dogs, we would not likely be able to afford afterwards, the drive out to MI. Thus, we decided to stay close to home and faxed our entry into the Can-Am race headquarters and made it on the list just under the wire!


Photo by Sheryl-Lyn Jandreau


Right up until the morning of the race, we still had not completely decided on the team. Our friend Christina approached us early Saturday morning before the 30/60 vet check. She needed a few dogs to fill out her 30 mile team. So the decision was made, we lent her Emma and Peggy.

Bobís time during the first leg was not bad considering the heat of the sun. Of course we would have liked a slightly better pace but we had not many training runs of 50+ miles in length so overall, we were satisfied. The dogs looked good coming into Portage and were screaming to go after their 5 hrs of rest.



We had expected a nice night run into Rocky Brook. The paper plan was to make it there between 6 & 7 hrs, but oddly, 20 miles out of Portage, the team began to quit. Bob rested for awhile on the trail and then spent time swapping leaders around. In the end, the run took 10 hrs. Obviously it was more mental stress than the team was able to recover from within the checkpoint departure deadline. At 6pm Sunday, Bob made the decision to scratch.

What caused us to fail in this task? Why did the dogs lack endurance? Was it Halley running in lead for 70+ miles in season, running the first and longest leg of the race in the blazing sun, lack of the right kind of training miles, wrong diet, the smorgasbord of snacks and booties on the trail to contend with as a result of being at the back of the pack, human error, etc. We will never know for sure.

Do we regret trying? Heck no! It takes guts to attempt something of this magnitude and we do not regret any minute of the process. We learned a lot about ourselves and the dogs this season and made some new friends along the way.

Thanks Mike & Sue for all your help and hospitality.

Thanks to our sponsors Dale Hendry, Helena Inkinen, Melinda Shore, Kathy & Bill Lesinski and Lev Shvarts. Plus much appreciated non monitary support from Ian Walker & others.

We are very proud of our dogs. And Rhonda... is even prouder of Bob for taking on the challange.

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