Connecting Alaska to the World And the World to Alaska
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

New Race Comemorates Late Eagle Village Chief


Fairbanks, AK - The Top of the World 350 starts December 27th,  two weeks before the Copper Basin.  The race commemorates the life of former Eagle Village Chief, Isaac Juneby, who passed away this summer.   
Hugh Neff says he didn’t hesitate when Juneby’s niece, Jodi Potts, asked him for help.

"You know, a lot ofmy dog lineages all come from guys like Lester Erhart and George Attla and Gareth Wright and some of the greatest native mushers of all time.”

Neff says he’s trying to pay forward years of support he’s received from the Alaska Native community.  He won’t be racing in the top of the world, but he is in charge of logistics.

“I’m actually gonna be a race official on the trail with a dog team," Neff says, "just out there giving advice and helping folks out and keeping an eye on some of the younger mushers that are in the race.”

The race comes with a unique format:  When teams leave the start line in Tok, and head for Eagle Village, they won’t be racing.  Competition doesn’t begin until after after mushers and Eagle Village residents celebrate the Isaac Juneby’s legacy with a potlatch.