Meet the 2022 A-Team!

 

 

This page introduces you to Laura's A-Team of 2021/2022. After a winter of training and racing yearlings last year, Laura has chosen the best nine dogs from that team and combined them with nine of the strongest dogs on last year's A-Team. This creates a team of 18 dogs ranging from two years old to nine years old. We are extremely excited to see what this team does at races but one thing is for sure, they're going to have a whole lot of FUN! The A-Team's race plans for 2022 include the John Beargrease Marathon, the UP200, and the CanAm 250. 

 

The page also includes information about our dog sponsorship program that allows fans to sponsor their favorite dog in exchange for race and kennel memorabilia that will be mailed out in the spring. The Nature's Kennel dog sponsorship program is dedicated to supporting Laura's 2022 race team. All of the proceeds go toward the team and their training and racing adventures throughout the 2022 season! This is how the club works; once a dog receives a sponsor, the sponsor's name and picture will be listed next to the dog and that dog will no longer be available for sponsorship.  They become that person's sponsored dog for the entire race season. Once you have sponsored a dog, you will always get the first chance to sponsor that dog again for the following race season.

 

Benefits of joining the club include exclusive Nature's Kennel and race memorabilia. Scroll to the bottom of the page for detailed information on the memorabilia that you will receive!

 

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BAKER

 

Age: 9

Race Record:

2014-Iditarod

2015-Eagle Cap Extreme, UP200, Canadian Challenge, Great Northwoods Challenge

2016-Yukon Quest, Iditarod, Percy DeWolfe

2017-Iditarod

2018-Yukon Quest, Canadian Challenge

2019-Idaho Sled Dog Challenge, UP200, CanAm Crown 100

2020-Gunflint Mail Run, John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon, UP200, Iditarod

2021-John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon

 

Baker is always one of the first to wake up and start barking to leave a checkpoint. He’s a huge dog who seems to be made of solid muscle. Baker has started every race that the A-Team has ever entered and finished all but one of them! At nine years old he and his brother Elmer are the oldest two on the team by 3 years.

Sponsored

by
Tracy Morrow!

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ELMER

 

Age: 9

Race Record

2014-Iditarod

2015-Eagle Cap Extreme, UP200, Canadian Challenge, Great Northwoods Challenge

2016-UP200, Iditarod

2017-Iditarod

2018-Yukon Quest, Canadian Challenge

2019-Idaho Sled Dog Challenge, UP200

2020-Gunflint Mail Run, John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon, UP200, Iditarod

2021-John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon

 

Elmer is a fantastic leader. He’s a steady dog who loves everyone and every dog in the 

kennel loves to be paired with him. He learned a lot during his time spent in lead with his sister, Maple, in the 2018 Yukon Quest. He and I greatly strengthened our bond during that race and that bond only got stronger with his exceptional performance in the 2020 Iditarod when he became my go-to leader in any situation. He is very patient with young dogs and is an excellent partner for leaders in training.

 

Sponsored

by
Pat Berglund
!

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JETT

 

Age: 6

Race Record:

2018-John Beargrease 100, Midnight Run, Copperdog 150

2019-John Beargrease Marathon, UP200, CanAm Crown 250, Hudson Bay Quest

2020-Gunflint Mail Run, John Beargrease Marathon, UP200, Iditarod

2021-Pedigree Stage Stop Race, Copperdog 150

 

I remember watching Jett run as a yearling and thinking out loud that I could picture her making the A-Team someday. She lived up to my expectations by having a great season with Blake Freking in 2019, even spending time in lead during every race. Then in 2020, she turned into one of my main leaders. She is an amazing dog to work with and I have never seen her phased by any difficult trail conditions. She is the mother of the "scooters" litter (Fusion, Chilly, Razor, and Envy) who are all joining the A-Team this year as two year old dogs.

Sponsored

by
Judy and Richard Carstens!

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SIRIUS

 

Age: 6

Race Record:

2017-Iditarod

2018-UP200

2019-John Beargrease Marathon, UP200, CanAm Crown 250, Hudson Bay Quest

2020-Gunflint Mail Run, John Beargrease Marathon, UP200

2021-John Beargrease Marathon

 

Sirius is entering his first season on the A-Team, but he has racked up quite the resume racing as a leader on the B-Team for the past 5 years! I'm looking forward to having him on my team this year. He's a hard driving guy who takes his job in lead very seriously!

 

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MARK

 

Age: 5

Race Record:

2018-UP200

2019-John Beargrease Marathon, UP200, CanAm Crown 250

2021-Pedigree Stage Stop Race, Copperdog 150

Mark is a handsome little guy with a beautiful gait and a lot of passion to boot. He gained experience training and racing with Blake Freking in 2019 and then joined the A-Team with me in 2020. He had a poorly timed tendon strain that year that prevented him from racing but he still became an amazing leader during the training season. In 2021, he was one of my main leaders while training and racing the yearlings. He also happens to be named after one of my main handlers... my wonderful Dad!

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ERIN

 

Age: 5

Race Record:

2018-UP200

2019-John Beargrease Marathon, UP200, CanAm Crown 250, Hudson Bay Quest

2020-Gunflint Mail Run, John Beargrease Marathon, UP200, Iditarod

2021-John Beargrease Marathon

 

Erin is insanely hyperactive and very rarely stands still. She is one of the smallest dogs on the team at 50 pounds. She's spunky, loves to run, and is a very hard worker. She gained great experience with Blake Freking in 2019 and went on to finish Iditarod with me in 2020. She's a good leader and is only getting better as she ages.

 

Sponsored

by
Steve and Michele Strzelecki!

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WITT

 

Age: 4

Race Record:

2020-John Beargrease Marathon, UP200, Iditarod

2021-John Beargrease Marathon

 

Witt is a super sweet little girl who just happens to be a leader also! She ran tours when she was one year old, but then as a two year old she trained and raced with Blake Freking and joined my team last minute for the Iditarod. She is a really fun dog who always contributes to the team and is fun to have around.

 

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BODE

 

Age: 4

Race Record:

2020-John Beargrease Marathon, UP200, Iditarod

2021-John Beargrease Marathon

 

Bode is Witt's brother and they have always looked so alike. They pair up well in the team and Bode is a leader also, although not quite as strong up front as Witt... yet. Bode has raced with Blake Freking for the past two years, and I'm really excited to have in on my team this year! He's a very athletic guy and he sure loves to go.

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RADAR

 

Age: 6

Race Record:

2017-Iditarod

2019-Idaho Sled Dog Challenge, UP200, CanAm Crown 100

2020-Gunflint Mail Run, John Beargrease Marathon, UP200, Iditarod

Radar was one of Ed's favorite dogs to work with and run 2018, and he became a solid and fun leader on my team in 2019 and 2020. He trained with Blake Freking in 2021 and became one of Blake's favorites also. He has a calm and mature demeanor and is a major cuddle bug in the house!

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 CHILLY

 

Age: 2

Race Record:

2021-Pedigree Stage Stop Race

Also known as "Chilly Dog" or "Chilly Bean", he is a very talented sled dog. Chilly is always smiling, wagging his tail, and waiting to give or receive a great big bear hug. He is also very comfortable running in lead!

Sponsored

by
Tracy Morrow!

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FUSION

 

Age: 2

Race Record:

2021-Pedigree Stage Stop Race, Copperdog 150

Fusion was my number one yearling out of 23 in training last year. He inherited all of both parents' best attributes, getting Baker's loud enthusiasm and Jett's natural leadership skills. He is extremely confident and one of the most natural leaders I have ever had the honor of working with.

 

Sponsored

by
Tracy Morrow!

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ENVY

 

Age: 2

Race Record:

2021-Pedigree Stage Stop Race, Copperdog 150

Envy is soft hearted, happy, and full of love. He is very attentive to "his human" and wants to be every dog's best friend. Just like his siblings, (Fusion, Chilly, and Razor) Envy is also a natural in lead. He's also a major cuddlebug!

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RAZOR

 

Age: 2

Race Record:

2021-Pedigree Stage Stop Race, Copperdog 150

A big, long legged girl, Razor is not lacking athleticism! She is a fantastic young dog who acts much older than her age. She makes great eye contact, loves to snuggle, and is a good young leader already.

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ATOM

 

Age: 2

Race Record:

2021-Pedigree Stage Stop Race, Copperdog 150

Atom is a bundle of energy. He was very immature at the beginning of training last year, but by the end of the season he was one of my top performing yearlings. He loves the race environment and I'm really excited to watch his continues maturation during this race season.

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WOODSTOVE

 

Age: 2

Race Record:

2021-Pedigree Stage Stop Race

Woodstove is amazing! If he was dumped in a can of black paint, he could easily pass for a black lab. He loves to swim (uncommon for Alaskan Huskies), loves to please his human, and is an all around jolly soul. I had to leave the cabin for about 1/2 hour the day he was born, and he crawled away from his mom and underneath the woodstove, where I found him as soon as I got home. He gained a scar on the top of his head to tell his tale and, of course, he had to be named Woodstove. He is a honest and steady sled dog and his tale never stops wagging!

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COMET

 

Age: 2

Race Record:

2021-Pedigree Stage Stop Race

Comet is a pretty little girl, but her heart is enormous! She had a flawless yearling season and blew me away with her performance at the Pedigree Stage Stop at 15 months old. She had a litter of 6 of the smartest puppies I have raised this summer, and I can't wait to see them in harness also! Comet loves to play with balls and will play fetch nonstop for 2 mile walks.

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Line

 

Age: 2

Race Record:

2021-Pedigree Stage Stop Race, Copperdog 150

Line was born in Alaska and along with her two sisters, made her way down the Alaska Highway and to our kennel as a young pup. She is a big female and isn't picky at all about what partner she is running with, as long as she's running, she's happy!

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ACE

Age: 2

Race Record:

2021-Pedigree Stage Stop Race, Copperdog 150

Ace is an extremely hyperactive and happy boy! I'm pretty convinced that it is physically impossible for him to stand still for longer than 2 seconds. He's a natural in lead and is always 100% ready to go!

The Team Coaches

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 MAPLE

 

Age: 9

Race Record

2014-Iditarod

2015-Canadian Challenge, Great Northwoods Challenge

2016-Yukon Quest, CanAm Crown 250

2017-Iditarod

2018-Yukon Quest, Canadian Challenge

2019-Idaho Sled Dog Challenge, UP200

 

Maple is Laura’s soul mate and before she retired in 2019, she was her main leader and go to dog. She excelled in both the 2016 and 2018 Yukon Quest and led the team for the majority of both races, never seeming to do anything less than perfectly. She is extremely smart and will do anything for Laura. You can find her anywhere Laura is, especially riding shotgun in the truck. Maple loves to lead the puppy teams during their first few months of running in harness and to take young puppies on puppy walks.

Due to popular demand, Maple is accepting multiple sponsors!

Sponsored

by
Rodney Haun and Michelle Jackson
&

Richard and Judy Carstens!

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WINKLE

 

Age: 9

Race Record

2014-Iditarod

2015-Eagle Cap Extreme, UP200, Canadian Challenge, Great Northwoods Challenge

2016-Yukon Quest, Iditarod, Percy DeWolfe

2017-Iditarod

2018-Yukon Quest, Canadian Challenge

2020-Gunflint Mail Run, John Beargrease Marathon, UP200, Iditarod

 

Winkle is best described as continually happy, hard working, and passionate. Laura jokingly calls him her “husband” due to his awesome personality, and Ed makes fun of the exaggerated ”poop dance” that he performs while running. He is always a rock solid dog that has finished every race that he has started. Winkle did a great job with training the yearlings on my team in 2021, and has now retired to couch warming duties with Maple. He will also be helping to train the puppies that were born this summer.

 

Sponsored

by
John and Carlynn Booth!

Want to Sponsor a Dog and Join the Nature's Kennel Race Team?
Your $500 Dog Sponsorship Includes:

 

  • Your name and picture displayed on the race team webpage

  • 2022 Nature’s Kennel Race Team t-shirt

  • Nature’s Kennel bumper/window sticker

  • Nature’s Kennel 2022 race team poster

  • 4x6 photo magnet of your sponsored dog

  • Your dog’s dog booties worn in races throughout the year

  • A trading card for your sponsored dog

  • Memoribalia from various races