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La Grande Odyssée Savoie Mont Blanc is an international sled dog race spanning 900 kilometres (560 mi) in French Alps and Swiss Alps. It was first held in January 2005. The 2012 La Grande Odyssée purse was $100,000. The next edition of the race was scheduled to be held from 10–21 January 2015.
Sled dog racing is a winter dog sport most popular in the Arctic regions of the United States, Canada, Russia, Greenland and some European countries. It involves the timed competition of teams of sled dogs that pull a sled with the dog driver or musher standing on the runners. The team completing the marked course in the least time is judged the winner.
The French Alps are the portions of the Alps mountain range that stand within France, located in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes and Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur regions. While some of the ranges of the French Alps are entirely in France, others, such as the Mont Blanc massif, are shared with Switzerland and Italy.
The Alpine region of Switzerland, conventionally referred to as the Swiss Alps, represents a major natural feature of the country and is, along with the Swiss Plateau and the Swiss portion of the Jura Mountains, one of its three main physiographic regions. The Swiss Alps extend over both the Western Alps and the Eastern Alps, encompassing an area sometimes called Central Alps. While the northern ranges from the Bernese Alps to the Appenzell Alps are entirely in Switzerland, the southern ranges from the Mont Blanc massif to the Bernina massif are shared with other countries such as France, Italy, Austria and Liechtenstein.
La Grande Odyssée Savoie-Mont-Blanc is intended for mushers with teams of 14 dogs who are experienced in long- and middle-distance. Through Savoie and Haute Savoie, France and Switzerland, mushers from perhaps a dozen different countries, compete for two weeks of racing over a course more than 800 km long, with a change in altitude of more than 25,000 metres (82,000 ft). The course takes the teams to 24 ski resorts (20 French and four Swiss). For each of the 10 stages, time-trialed (every two minutes) or mass (in parallel) starts bring thousands of spectators to the Savoie-Mont-Blanc region. The race includes three completely independent encampments: one in the first week and two in the second week.
During the 2013 race, the Haute-Maurienne-Vanoise Trophy will take place during stages 7 (shortened), 8 and 9 of La Grande Odyssée Savoie-Mont-Blanc in Haute-Maurienne-Vanoise. It is open to a maximum of 10 middle-distance mushers, who must cover nearly 200 km/effort and climb up 5000m of height difference in total. The Haute-Maurienne-Vanoise Trophy also includes a compulsory encampment on open mountain.
Using a GPS tracking system, spectators can visit the race's website to follow in real time the mushers’ progress. The tracking also provides security for the competitors. In addition to the tracking system, Each sled is also equipped with a calculator and a GPRS phone.
Each itinerary is simulated in 3D as a "virtual walk around" realized with the help of a camera positioned to follow a precise path along a track or sled trail.
The 2012 La Grande Odyssée purse was $100,000, the first prize was $30,000, the second prize was $20,000 and the third prize was $10,000.
Prize money has a distinct meaning in warfare, especially naval warfare, where it was a monetary reward paid out under prize law to the crew of a ship for capturing or sinking an enemy vessel. The claims for the bounty are usually heard in a Prize Court.
|Year||1st Musher||Time (h:min:s)||2nd Musher||3ds Mucher|
|2007||Race ended due to snow conditions|
For 2011, Finnmarksløpet in Norway and La Grande Odyssée Savoie Mont Blanc in France decided to create a new championship called the Arctic Alps Cup. It follows the trails of the Espace Diamant that join the Franco-Swiss massifs called Portes du Soleil, the Haute Maurienne Vanoise and Megève.
Finnmarksløpet is the world's northernmost sled dog race. It is also Europe's longest sled dog race. The race starts on Saturday of the 10th week of the year and goes across Finnmark in Norway. The race was first run in 1981.
The Graian Alps are a mountain range in the western part of the Alps.
Savoie is a department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region of France. Its prefecture is Chambéry; it is located in the French Alps. In 2016, it had a population of 429,681.
The Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race is an annual long-distance sled dog race run in early March from Anchorage to Nome, entirely within the US state of Alaska. Mushers and a team of 14 dogs, of which at least 5 must be on the towline at the finish line, cover the distance in 8–15 days or more. The Iditarod began in 1973 as an event to test the best sled dog mushers and teams but evolved into today's highly competitive race. Then a record, the second fastest winning time was recorded in 2016 by Dallas Seavey with a time of 8 days, 11 hours, 20 minutes, and 16 seconds. As of 2012, Dallas Seavey was also the youngest musher to win the race at the age of 25. In 2017, at the age of 57, Dallas's father, Mitch Seavey, is the oldest and fastest person ever to win the race, crossing the line in Nome in 8 days, 3 hours, 40 minutes and 13 seconds. Dallas finished second, two hours and 44 minutes behind.
Mushing is a sport or transport method powered by dogs. It includes carting, pulka, dog scootering, sled dog racing, skijoring, freighting, and weight pulling. More specifically, it implies the use of one or more dogs to pull a sled on snow or a rig on dry land.
Megève is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in southeastern France with a population of more than 4,000 residents. The town is well known as a ski resort near Mont Blanc in the French Alps. Conceived in the 1920s as a French alternative to St. Moritz by the Rothschilds, it was the first purpose-built resort in the Alps. Originally it was a prime destination for the French aristocracy. It remains one of the most famous and fanciest ski resorts in the world.
The Yukon Quest 1,000-mile International Sled Dog Race, or simply Yukon Quest, is a sled dog race run every February between Fairbanks, Alaska, and Whitehorse, Yukon. Because of the harsh winter conditions, difficult trail, and the limited support that competitors are allowed, it is considered the "most difficult sled dog race in the world", or even the "toughest race in the world"—"even tougher, more selective and less attention-seeking than the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race." The originator envisioned it as "a race so rugged that only purists would participate."
Mont-Blanc[mɔ̃ blɑ̃] was a department of the First French Empire. It was named after Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in Western Europe, which marks the border between France and Piedmont. It was formed in 1792, when the Savoy region, was occupied by the French. The department ceased to exist following Napoleon's defeat at Waterloo; the territory was restored to its former rulers.
Dorothy G. Page was best known as "Mother of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race", the 1,049-mile dog sled race across the U.S. state of Alaska.
Maurienne is one of the provinces of Savoy, corresponding to the arrondissement of Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne in France. It is also the original name of the capital of the province, now Saint-Jean-de-Maurienne.
The massif des Cerces is a region of the French Alps on the Franco-Italian border. On the French side it lies in the departements of Hautes-Alpes and Savoie.
Modane is a commune in the Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in southeastern France.
The Vanoise massif is a mountain range of the Graian Alps, located in the Western Alps. After the Mont Blanc Massif and the Massif des Écrins it is the third highest massif in France, reaching a height of 3,885m at the summit of Grande Casse. It lies between Tarentaise Valley to the north and the Maurienne valley in the south. The range is the site of France's first National Park in 1963, the Vanoise National Park. The ski resorts of Tignes and Val-d'Isère and the 2,770m high Col de l'Iseran are located in the eastern part of the range.
La Chapelle-d'Abondance is a commune in the Haute-Savoie department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in south-eastern France.
The Alpirod is a defunct 1,000 kilometres (621 mi) sled dog stage race in Southern Europe. Its name comes from a combination of the Alps, where the race took place, and the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, upon which the race was based. The competition consisted of a 14-day stage race in 11 cities in four countries: Italy, Germany, Austria and France. The competition consisted of multiple short races separated by evening breaks, similar to cycling's Tour de France. At the time, it was the largest sled dog race outside North America. The race was organized by Armen Khatchikian, an Italian Iditarod competitor who hoped to bring a form of that race to Europe. It first took place in 1988, and the inaugural race was won by Alaska racer Joe Runyan. In 1989, the race was won by Kathy Swenson. She was the first woman to win the race. In 1990, Alaskan Roxy Wright Champaine won the race, becoming the third American winner. In 1992, the race was won by Nenana, Alaska musher Jacques Philip, who went on to win the race three times.
Mel Andrews is a British adventurer and athlete, specializing as a Musher in Dogsled Racing. On 5 February 2013, she became the first British woman to finish Europe’s biggest sled dog race, Femundløpet. A month later Andrews broke the record for fastest GB rookie to finish the World’s longest 8-dog race Finnmarksløpet.
Aliy Zirkle is a champion of sled dog racing.