Norwegian musher Joar Leifseth Ulsom won the 2018 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race on Wednesday when he crossed the finish line in Nome, Alaska, just after 3 a.m. local time, the Anchorage Daily News reports. It is Leifseth Ulsom's first time winning the nearly 1,000-mile race, although his time — 9 days, 13 hours, and one minute — is almost half an hour shorter than his previous slowest Iditarod run in 2013. He claimed the slowest winning time since 2009.
Leifseth Ulsom had been trailing fellow musher Nic Petit on Monday, before Petit lost his lead during a snowstorm about 777 miles into the race. By the time Leifseth Ulsom reached White Mountain, the second-to-last checkpoint in the race on Tuesday, he had a nearly three-hour lead on Petit, The Associated Press reports.
Leifseth Ulsom is the third Iditarod winner born outside the United States, and he breaks a winning streak by the Seavey family; Dallas Seavey and his dad, Mitch Seavey, had alternated winning every Iditarod since 2011. Dallas sat out the 2018 race in protest of a scandal stemming from his dogs testing positive for the banned opioid pain reliever Tramadol after last year's Iditarod.