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53 year old musher becomes oldest Iditarod champ

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A musher travels across Norton Sound on their way to Koyuk in Alaska during the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race on Monday, March 11, 2013. A musher travels across Norton Sound on their way to Koyuk in Alaska during the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race on Monday, March 11, 2013. Image Source: Associated Press
NOME, Alaska (AP) — A 53 year old former champion has won the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race to become the oldest winner of Alaska's grueling test of endurance.

Mitch Seavey and 10 dogs crossed the Nome finish line to cheering crowds at 10:39 p.m. Alaska time Tuesday.

His victory in the 1,000 mile race came after a dueling sprint against Aliy Zirkle, last year's runner-up, along the Bering Sea coast. The pair jostled for the lead, closely followed by four-time champion Jeff King.

Seavey, who first won the Iditarod in 2004, is the father of last year's champion, Dallas Seavey, who at age 25 became the youngest Iditarod winner ever, beating Zirkle to the finish line by one hour.

Before Mitch Seavey's second win, King was the oldest Iditarod champion, winning his fourth race at age 50 in 2006.

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