PORT ANGELES — The competition to win the Race to Alaska and the $10,000 first prize may have ended Monday, but that didn’t mean the contest was over for the teams racing to get their hands on the second place prize of a set of steak knives.
By late Wednesday morning, Team Elsewhere, a Soverell 33 Monohull out of Friday Harbor, had a solid lead over the remaining 24 teams and sailed into Ketchikan, Alaska, to win the knives.
Team Elsewhere had chosen to take a route up the west side of Vancouver Island after sailing out of Victoria, which was an option for racers for the first time this year in the race hosted by the Northwest Maritime Center in Port Townsend.
The winning Team Pure & Wild with Jonathan McKee, Matt Pistay and Alyosha Strum-Palerm was the first to arrive in Ketchikan on Monday afternoon.
It took the team four days, four hours and 32 minutes to complete the 710-mile stage from Victoria.
The win made Pistay the race’s first two-time winner; he won with Team Angry Beavers in 2019.
Race to Alaska teams are prohibited from making pre-arranged food or supply drops, but that doesn’t mean they can’t head to land when they need to make repairs or purchase supplies.
On their way north, Team Oaracle stopped to pick up a new spray deck (a waterproof cover with holes for the paddlers) for their 22-foot-long double kayak, while Team Rite of Passage made a pit stop for a pint of chocolate mint ice cream.
Competitors in the 750-mile motorless marine adventure race set out from Port Townsend on June 13 for the 40-mile stage to Victoria, which was also won by Team Pure & Wild.
Of the 32 teams who set out from Victoria, 24 remained on the race course Wednesday and seven did not finish.
Teams must reach Ketchikan by noon July 9, the official end of the race.
Reporter Paula Hunt can be reached by email at [email protected]