musher Haggard

There are currently 2 mushers at Trail Breaker Kennel, Laura Allaway and Mandy Nauman, both are training for upcoming races in the 2013-2014 season. You can find biographies for these talented ladies below, or check out our News section for updates on their mushing activities.

Laura Allaway

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For an up and coming mushing competitor, Laura grew up in an unconventional environment — deep in the suburbs of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Her passion for dogs led her to join the humane society at the young age of 14, where she worked as an adoption councillor. By age 17, and based at a doggy daycare, Laura’s work was oriented more towards dog behavior. Although she loved working with dogs in the city, Laura craved the outdoors, so, one summer, she packed up her bags and headed to Skagway, Alaska, where she worked as a horseback guide. This job was only supposed to last one season — a fun summer job that allowed her to save money for a dental hygiene course, which she planned to start the following autumn. She only lasted 6 months once back in Milwaukee before packing up and moving back to Alaska. Once again in Skagway as a horseback guide, Laura was exposed to dog mushing, and, given her previous dog-handling experience, found that she was a natural — Laura had found her passion. She thus moved to Chena Hot Springs, just north of Fairbanks, where she could begin mushing a bit more seriously, while still working as a horseback guide during the summer. After spending 4 years at Chena Hot Springs, guiding in the summer and mushing in the winter, Laura moved to Fairbanks to join us at Trail Breaker Kennel, where she would begin training as a competitive musher. In 2013, Laura raced the Copper Basin 300, the Northern Lights 300 and the Tustumena 200, placing well in all races.

Soapy, an Iditarod veteran (having ran the Iditarod 6 times), will likely be Laura’s lead dog as she trains for the 2013-2014 racing season.

To follow Laura’s activities, check our News section or find her on Facebook.

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Mandy Nauman

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Originally from Cameron, Wisconsin, Mandy moved to Alaska in 2005. She had been attending college in Ely, Minnesota, where, as part of her coursework, she took a class on dog mushing; after that, she was hooked. Mandy packed her bags and headed to Fairbanks to become a musher.

During her first winter in Fairbanks, Mandy worked for a sprint kennel (fast pace, but short distance). She then moved to Chena Hot Springs to work with Brent Sass. She stayed at Chena for 2 years, then decided to explore the mushing scene in Europe. After a brief stay in Switzerland, Mandy returned to Chena Hot Springs to fill a vacant kennel manager position.

Five years ago, Mandy moved back to Fairbanks — where Brent Sass was now based — in order to train Brent’s young dogs in the art of mushing. Around this time, she also began working with Trail Breaker Kennel, where she has been a critical participant in our summer tourist shows.

This past racing season, Mandy participated in the the Chatanika 200 and the Solstice 100. Next winter, she hopes to participate in at least one, 300-mile race, where she will take a team composed largely of several young dogs that have never raced before — a challenge for her as she gets them ready for longer races. Mandy also hopes to race the Yukon Quest in 2014.

To follow Mandy’s activities, check out our News section, or go to her website: www.douglasfirmushing.com.

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