|FRANK TEASLEY — 2020 EXECUTIVE RACE DIRECTOR
Frank Teasley was struck with the idea for a stage stop race in Wyoming more than 25 years ago. "This race promotes good health for all of us, and we also have lot of fun doing it!" he says. The format gives people access to the sport, all its athletes, and its excitement.
Frank has had a distinguished career as a professional dog musher, and is an Iditarod veteran. His best Iditarod finish in 1991 was sixth place out of a field of 74 teams, and he won the Sterling Silver Award for the most improved team the same year. In 1989, Frank received the prestigious Leonhard Seppala Humanitarian Award for best-cared-for team. He learned his craft from veteran musher and 'Father of the Iditarod' Joe Redington, Sr.
Frank's extensive racing credits also include multiple wins in the John Beargrease, The UP 200, and Race to the Sky. He's also raced with successes in Russia, France, Argentina, Canada, Italy, and Switzerland.
When he co-founded his Jackson Hole Iditarod Sled Dog Tours Company, Frank saw it as a "pension-plan" for his experienced racing dogs and a "high school" for the younger, less experienced ones. Frank breeds, raises and trains Alaskan huskies as well. "I love the sport of mushing and have always been dedicated to the well-being and health of these great animals," Frank states with some authority.
|DAN CARTER — 2020 RACE DIRECTOR
Dan Carter would be the last person in the world to tell you why he was the perfect choice for Race Director, but Frank Teasley is happy to do the job. “Dan has that rare combination — the mind of a businessman, the drive of a competitive athlete, and the soul of a true dog musher — that spells success.” Over its first twenty years the race had become so popular that the director’s responsibilities increased dramatically, especially because second rate wasn’t ever good enough. There was simply too much race, and not enough Frank. That’s when he decided that Dan would be the perfect choice.
Dan’s first connection with the Pedigree Stage Stop Race was in 1997 when he helped train a team. After completing the race six times, he took over as Chief Timer, and for two years, good friend and then Race Director Frank Teasley “kept trying to hand me the Director’s notebook.” He accepted in 2015, and hasn’t looked back.
Dan has completed many races including the Iditarod, the Grand Portage Passage Sled Dog Race (which he won in 2003) in addition to six-time finisher in the Pedigree Stage Stop Race. His sporting career is by no means limited to dog related adventures. In 2004, he paddled a canoe for 1,400 miles from Lake Superior to Hudson Bay. That’s right — 1,400 miles, not kilometers! A few years later he navigated the Colorado River 225 miles through the Grand Canyon in a cat-a-raft he built himself.
Who knows how a B.S. in management from Purdue University led to many years as a river and back country guide and operations manager? His diverse work background — guiding wilderness trips from Arizona to Montana, Texas oil fields wrangler, and television production in Los Angeles — means he’s well equipped to handle anything. Which is useful because the unexpected always happens in this race!
Dan lives with his partner Lisa, their dog Milo and cat Buck Rogers in Indianapolis. If this isn't enough to keep him busy, Dan started Brighten Exterior Cleaning Services three years ago and, in his spare time if you can imagine he has spare time, Dan says he wants to play golf.
Dan enjoys being Race Director which lets him stay involved in a sport that he loves while maintaining friendships with mushers, sponsors, and fellow race crew members. “Pedigree has been with the race for 20 years now! We couldn’t ask for a better sponsor, and we are proud to have Pedigree in our name."
|WARREN PALFREY —2020 RACE MARSHALL
Warren returns to the 2020 Stage Stop as Race Marshall. After a 30 year career racing in North America including multiple Iditarod's and Yukon Quest, Warren retired from dog mushing in 2015. He’s raced the Stage Stop many times, initially to test his dogs — “To be the best, you have to beat the best. Racing against the best is the only way to truly measure your dog team,” was Warren’s mantra.
Without a doubt, the best teams in the world are coming to race in the 2019 Stage Stop!
“Frank Teasley’s vision of excellence in competition, coupled with an “A-Team” of veterinarians, makes the Pedigree® Stage Stop Race a showcase of the best in the sport,” Warrens states. “I am humbled to be appointed as Race Marshall for 2019. I'm looking forward to watching the new format in action. There will be some exciting racing this year — The 2020 Stage Stop will be THE RACE to follow!”
|THE DREAM TEAM — 2019 VETERINARIANS
The Pedigree® Stage Stop Veterinary Team were individually selected for their experience, knowledge and devotion to our sport. They are members of the International Sled Dog Veterinary Medical Association, a group dedicated to the promotion, care and research of racing sled dogs. Several Veterinarians hold multiple “Golden Stethoscope” Awards. The Iditarod Official Finishers award the Golden Stethoscope to the trail veterinarian whom they feel has gone above and beyond the call of duty. This “Dream Team” of professionals has been extensively involved in many research projects devoted to the care of racing sled dogs and other working breeds.
Caroline Griffitts DVM, DACVSMR, CVSMT — 2020 Chief Race Veterinarian
Lanier (Lannie) Hamilton, DVM — 2020 Race Veterinarian
Veronica Devall, DVM — 2020 Race Veterinarian
Monica Pacheco Duran, DVM — 2020 Race Veterinarian
|CAROLINE GRIFFITTS, DVM — 2020 RACE CHIEF VETERINARIAN
Dr. Caroline Griffitts DVM, DACVSMR, CVSMT has been a vital part of the Pedigree® Stage Stop Race since its inception as well as a trail veterinarian on many races including the Iditarod, the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon, the Pedigree® Stage Stop Race, the Yukon Quest, local sprint races in Colorado, and the IFSS dryland world championships. She's the only three-time recipient of the Golden Stethoscope which Iditarod race finishers award to veterinarians they feel have gone above and beyond. For many years, she’s given dog care seminars, advised on kennel management, and served as chief veterinarian for both the winter and dryland races in North Hope, Russia. She’s also served as chief veterinarian at the Kalevala Sled Dog Race in Karelia, Russia.
Caroline received her veterinary degree from Cornell University in 1988, and then completed an internship in small animal medicine and surgery at Michigan State University. She is board certified by the American College of Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation, and certified in veterinary spinal manipulation therapy. She also serves on the Anti-Doping Committee of the International Federation of Sled Dog Sports, and is president of the International Sled Dog Veterinary Medical Association.
She spent several years as an associate in a mixed practice, and working part time in emergency clinics. In 1997, she started her own mobile house call practice based out of Loveland, Colorado, which gives her flexibility for other interests such as traveling, sled dogs, and a combination of the two whenever possible.
|LANNIE HAMILTON, DVM — 2020 RACE VETERINARIAN
In 2000, Lanier “Lannie” Hamilton accompanied eleven dog teams across Alaska on the Serum Run. She has worked the Iditarod a number of times, as well as the Denali 300 sled dog race, and has been with the Pedigree® Stage Stop Race since 2003. She appreciates the format of the Stage Stop and the excellent dog care that is fostered by that format.
Graduating from Washington State University in 1991, Lannie has always had a keen interest in the medicine and surgery of athletic animals. She pursued a fellowship in Large Animal Medicine and Surgery at Oregon State University in 1998-1999 and has worked as relief vet in Alaska, Wyoming and Idaho and owned her own practice. Currently she has a practice in Wyoming, but still takes time to travel to Alaska while providing low cost spay and neuter endeavors on the nearby Wind River Indian Reservation.
In 2016, she accompanied the Alaska Native Rural Veterinary group to 3 Iditarod villages to spay and neuter village dogs. Lannie is always excited to help with the Stage Stop, which covers parts of her home turf and combines her love of the outdoors and animal athletes.
|VERONICA DEVALL, DVM — 2020 RACE VETERINARIAN
Dr. Veronica Devall DVM, DACVMR, CCRT, CVA, CVC has been involved with sled dog races and sports medicine for many years. Stage races are her passion because of the combination of enhanced dog care and exciting racing strategy. She’s participated in the Yukon Quest as well as numerous Iditarods. Veronica is a member of the ISDVMA. Her specialty practice in Calgary, Alberta, Canada is devoted to veterinary rehabilitation and integrative pain management for performance, working, and service dogs, along with retired geriatrics and other canine companions. She is a specialist in the College of Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation and is also a certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist, Veterinary Acupuncturist, Veterinary Chiropractor, and Veterinary Pain Practitioner. She loves hands-on teaching and the ability to participate in progressive race dog care. Dr. Devall is a part of an evolving integrative approach to the veterinary team, and welcomes the opportunity to apply her therapeutic skills with the race dogs. Veronica has been involved with the Stage Stop Race for several years with her inaugural start as a handler back in the 2001 IPSSSDR and then joining the vet team in 2014.
|MONICA PACHECO DURAN, DVM — 2020 RACE VETERINARIAN
Monica Pacheco Durán graduated from the Madrid Complutense University College of Veterinary Medicine in 1997, then opened her own small animal clinic in Madrid, Spain. She loves winter weather, sled dogs, and outdoor sports. In 2005 she was a member of the Pirena sled dog race veterinary team, a race which crossed over the rugged Pyrenees mountain of Andorra, Spain, and France. She has also been a trail veterinarian on the Yukon Quest, and Finnmarksløpet several times. Dr. Pacheco has been chief veterinarian for the Spanish National Championship, both dryland and snow, several times since 2012.
These days Dr. Pacheco is on the board of the ISDVMA, and collaborates with Dr. Caroline Grifffits on the IFSS Anti-Doping Committee. This will be Monica’s sixth consecutive Stage Stop Race.
|DOUG AICHELE — 2020 RACE JUDGE
Doug lives in Stillwater, Oklahoma where he maintains a small ranch and a dog kennel with his wife Kathryn. He is a retired math professor at Oklahoma State University (OSU) where he taught for many years. Doug has been active in sled dog research with OSU veterinarians, contributing to the published dropped dog study (Yukon Quest) that helps mushers use dog blood profiles to compose their teams. He is an Army veteran (ROTC) and has climbed and guided over forty of Colorado’s Fourteeners.
Doug’s love for animals, dogs in particular, seems to be a part of his make-up. Currently, his sled dogs in Stillwater are littermates of Vulcan and Vixen. Their father, Gumbie, lived with the family many years until his passing. Gumbie was an Iditarod and Yukon Quest veteran (2010 Pin and Patch Dog). Together with Gumbie, Vulcan and Vixen, Doug has given many presentations in a wide range of venues. Doug has handled sled dogs for Warren and Kate Palfrey’s Northern Star Kennels at the Iditarod, Canadian Challenge, and Pedigree Stage Stop Race and served as Race Judge for the Stage Stop since 2015. “Reuniting with friends and helping this great race crew pull off another awesome experience for mushers and their dogs,” says Doug. That’s why he comes back to Wyoming every January!
|BOB HATTON — 2020 RACE MECHANIC
Bob Hatton is the official Pedigree® Stage Stop Race Mechanic. As Bob tells it, he was lured by Frank Teasley's invitation to become the mechanic and travel with the Stage Stop. "Bring your wife,” Frank said, “it might be like a vacation for the two of you!”
“I said, sure, sounds like fun!"
"It was all I could do to keep up with the tail lights that didn't work, a generator that worked but lacked any voltage to run the race motor home or the random flat tire on support vehicles . . . and then, there were the race's trail sleds. Well, that's a story in itself, but you get the idea." This is how Bob describes his first outing as Race Mechanic.
Bob had repaired Frank's snowmobiles and ATVs at his shop in Jackson, Wyoming, for years so he was familiar with the equipment, even if he was a total novice at racing. “My dear wife, Joanna, didn't see much of me during that first race. But Joanna took it in stride and still managed to enjoy herself. She loves dogs, and it was fun to be part of an event like this.”
Bob has learned that the Stage Stop is most certainly not a leisurely trip to the mountains. "Joanna and I go on more traditional vacations now, but I still participate as the Official Mechanic. It's my fifth year, and I enjoy it more than ever. Yes, I still stay pretty busy. If it can break, it will break. And I'll be ready when it does."
|SEAN McNELIS — 2020 OFFICIAL RACE TIMER
After travelling with the Pedigree® Stage Stop Race as Stage Coordinator for over ten years, Sean McNelis returns as the Official Race Timer once again. “I enjoy any sport that has to do with being on a trail,” he says. Sean met Frank Teasley “over 100 years ago” and their friendship bonded when they began travelling to dog races together starting about 16 years ago.
He was raised in New England and moved to Colorado after high school. Then back east for college (B.S. from Western Connecticut State University) and westward ho! again to Wyoming. When not on the race circuit, Sean makes his living building homes in Jackson, Wyoming.
|CODY GRUBBS — 2020 TRAIL CREW
“Redwine and Grubbs” might not have the same initial appeal as Bert and Ernie or Shake and Bake, but they are the Lennon and McCartney of the sled dog world. Cody Owen Grubbs has been a vital member of the Pedigree® Stage Stop Race Trail Crew for at least seven years — says that he’s enjoyed it so much he’s lost track of time. He's right hand man to Trail Boss, Matt Redwine (see Matt’s bio posted here on Facebook earlier today). In fact, the whole family, wife and young son, join in the fun of the Stage Stop Race, hosting a sled dog team, and participating in the festivities again this year.
Cody loves the beautiful Wyoming back country, making friends of the race crew and mushers who’ve become part of his extended family, and, of course, the dogs. He’s always loved dogs.
Currently, Cody lives in Alpine, Wyoming, where he owns and operates Grubbs Painting with clients from Jackson to Star Valley. He loves to hunt, fly fish with his family, and be outside as much as possible. He’s a hard worker who puts his family first. They’re currently building a home in Alpine, but don’t worry, they wouldn’t miss the race for darned near anything.
Cody looks forward to seeing each one of you, and doing the work it takes to make 2018 another successful year on the Stage Stop trail.
|MATT REDWINE — 2020 TRAIL BOSS
Matt lives in Jackson, Wyoming with his wife Brook and Louie their dog. After many successful years of construction, guiding on the river, and a volunteer fire fighter, Matt found his dream career in Jackson Hole Fire/EMS. He returns to the trails every winter for the Stage Stop dog race. “I love the compassion everyone involved shows for each other and the sport of mushing,” says Redwine. “It’s a combination of Mother Nature’s elements, the Rocky Mountains, fierce competitors, rural communities and the world’s fastest dog teams!”
Frank Teasley recruited Matt with the promise that “it’s a dog race and anything can (and will) happen.” Frank doesn’t disappoint as there have been many amazing adventures over the years. Redwine started as assistant trail sweep in 1993; John Welch was the Official Trail Boss at the time and taught him everything he needed to know admonishing “Don’t screw this up, Redwine.” Matt enjoys the changing venues and working in the elements. “I look forward to this year’s events and catching up with the family.”
|CHRIS HAVENER — 2020 RACE PHOTOGRAPHER
2020 marks Chris Havener’s 32nd year of wildland fire management. His expertise is aviation — more specifically helicopters — not flying them but almost everything else. As Chris explains, “my job in multi-faceted, simultaneously managing heli-bases with up to 15 helicopters and 150 personnel to doing reconnaissance, mapping" . . . you name it, Chris probably does it. Chris has called Jackson, Wyoming his “base of operation” for the last 26+ years and has fought fires in more than a dozen states as well as Canada. He’s always a welcome face (and beard) to his colleagues from around the country when he arrives on the fire line.
Chris describes his off-time activities as being “a skier — well, a beginner really — and a wanna-be fly fisherman who likes to harvest the mighty Wapiti, and the fast and ferocious Wyoming Speed Goat.” You’ll have to ask him about the details.
Over the last 13 years, he’s captured and shared with the public his vibrant photographs of the Pedigree® Stage Stop Sled Dog Race. Chris states (quoting Frank Teasley), “It’s too late to scratch!” which translates “I’m looking forward to seeing ya out on the 2020 Stage Stop trail.”
|KATIE WILLIAMS — 2020 LEAD TEACHER
“I’m thrilled to be Lead Teacher with the Pedigree® Stage Stop Dog Sled Race again this year!” says an enthusiastic Katie Williams. “Teaching is my passion, and I am excited to get young people involved in the amazing sport dog sled racing through education and hands on experiences. I am anxious to start scheduling field trips, and publishing educational materials.” 2020 will be Katie’s fourth year as Lead Teacher.
“My job is to help teachers incorporate the race into their curriculum, get mushers into classrooms, and students out to the races. Last year mushers visited more than 700 students. Teachers can bring students to the race to meet mushers, tour the trucks, visit handlers and dogs, meet race staff, and then watch the teams rush out of the chute. It's a day packed with lots of activity, and a great opportunity to get students into an important part of Wyoming’s culture.
Katie has been a teacher for eleven years — first in Swan Valley, Idaho teaching 1st and 2nd grades for seven years before taking a position in Pinedale where she now teaches fourth grade. Katie says that the most rewarding part of her work is spending nine months a year teaching and helping students become the best little people they can possibly be, and then the chance to watch as they continue their school career and become bigger humans.
Katie and husband Randy both grew up in Lander and have lived in Pinedale for five years. She’s mother to two of last year’s Junior Mushers — Hayden (six years) and Maggie (eight years). After watching the Junior Mushers race during Katie’s first year as Lead Teacher, her kids decided they were interested, too. Jeff Conn was Hayden’s musher, and Alix Crittenden was Maggie's. “They loved seeing their mushers each morning, and sitting with them at the banquets. The have all become life-long friends!”
Email Katie directly
|SEAN HARD — 2020 RACE JUDGE
Sean and wife Brooke Bohannon (see Brooke’s bio) maintained a kennel of dogs for over 17 years. Together with their four-legged athletes they went on many adventures from New England to Alaska and eventually landed in Whitefish, Montana. After competing in the 2009 Pedigree Stage Stop and helping Aaron Peck in 2010 and 2012, they decided it was time to get involved. “Some years have passed and now it’s a wonderful opportunity to give back to the race, connect with old friends and make new ones,” says Sean. Throughout the year I wear three hats: custom home builder, dog sled builder for Adanac Sleds and Equipment, and farmer at our vegetable farm. When not working, I can be found at the river fly fishing.
|BROOKE BOHANNON — 2020 RACE JUDGE
Brooke lives in Whitefish, Montana with husband Sean Hard (see Sean’s bio). They acquired their first sled dog in 1995. Both Brooke and Sean worked as tour guides in Juneau for Alaska Heli-mush from 2003-2005. Brooke competed in the Seeley Lake 200; handled for Sean at IPSSSDR 2009 and for Katie Davis at the Yukon Quest in 2010; and co-founded Flathead Sled Dog Days (now Flathead Classic). Now, dog free, Brooke says she spends her time “toiling in the soil at our diversified vegetable farm, The Wicked Good Farm. I also lend Sean a hand in building dog sleds. I am looking forward to assisting in this year’s Pedigree Stage Stop — the mushing community holds a special place in my heart.”
|GEORGES DURAND — 2020 RACE STAGING ASSISTANT
Georges lives outside Saint Rambert, France which he says is “about the size of Jackson.” He commutes one-hour each way to Lyon where he works as a firefighter, which he’s been doing for over 30 years. “I met Frank (Teasley, Co-Founder of the Wyoming Stage Stop Race) in France during the 2005 La Grande Odyssée race in the French Alps which runs from Portes du Soleil to Haute-Maurienne. He asked me to come to Wyoming and, with the exception of last year, I’ve been coming every year since. I’m really excited to get back to Wyoming and see my old friends — maybe meet some new ones, too” he says in his usual affable manner.
|KATIE DAVIS — 2020 RACE JUDGE
Katie found a passion for sled dog racing after running dogs as a tour guide for Jackson Hole Iditarod Sled Dog Tours in 2001. She competed in the IPSSSDR in 2003 and 2004 with the Teasley team, and 2006 as part of Doug Swingley’s racing team. She also ran the Iditarod in 2006 with a team of Swingley puppies, and the 2010 Yukon Quest with her own team. Shilo, one of her lead dogs in 2006, has retired to a position as Katie’s skiing and cycling companion and has become a connoisseur of cushy beds and cozy firesides.
She received her BA in Biology from Wesleyan University in 2001. After retiring from racing, Katie started graduate school in Environmental Engineering at Bozeman, Montana. She’s currently a research engineer at Montana State University working on groundwater remediation. “It will be fun to be back in Wyoming again to see some familiar faces, and make some new friends at this year’s Stage Stop,” says an enthusiastic Katie.
|ROGER CARPENTER — 2019 MEDIA DIRECTOR
Roger Carpenter started his professional life as “paste-up guy” at Rolling Stone magazine in its earlier days in San Francisco. From there he moved to designing at Francis Coppola’s CITY Magazine, Columbia Records, Art Director for OUI Magazine, Paper Moon Graphics, and Foote Cone Belding/Honig on the Levi Strauss account. He built his own design agency in Los Angeles and is responsible for the look of many films including Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom as well as many classic video titles including To Kill a Mockingbird, Citizen Kane, the Bette Davis collection for MGM, the Classic Monsters collection for Universal Studios, and the Shirley Temple, Rodgers & Hammerstein, Marilyn Monroe and Planet of the Apes collections for Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment.
You’d be forgiven for wondering how a fancy pants Hollywood art director/graphics designer ended up thigh deep in snow, chasing a bunch of mushers around Wyoming. Actually, the explanation is as simple as an ex-wife who fell in love with sled dog racing in California and eventually another sled dog racer in Montana. Hang on because a happy ending is not far away.
In 2003, at a small race in Glenwood Springs CO, Roger met Ray Gordon (the guy who encouraged Frank Teasley to pursue a stage stop format race in Wyoming). Ray was a seasoned veteran of stage and long distance racing having completed the Iditarod twice and, at the time, still turning in first place wins. Gordon asked Roger to handle for him at a few races that year and afterwards declared Roger ‘the best damn handler I’ve had in 40 years.’ Roger also assisted Gordon who was Race Judge of the IPSSSDR that year, and met the Stage Stop family including many who he’s working alongside this year.
Now happily remarried, Roger lives mostly in Laramie WY and Walden CO where he continues his work as a marketing and design consultant. He designed the book “Atlantic City, Wyoming • Voices from a Powerful Place” which was awarded the Wyoming State Historical Society’s first place honor in 2018. He and his wife trekked the Mustang district of Nepal in 2018 and did white water Cataract Canyon this summer.
Roger has been the Media Director the past six years, so say hello when you see him buzzing around doing whatever. He says that he looks forward to making 2020 the best Stage Stop ever.
|BILL HASTINGS — 2020 WEBMASTER & IT SUPPORT
Bill Hastings comes from a background in Wildlife Biology, log furniture building and a dream to be a full-time musician. He began his IT career ages ago (in computer years) when dial-up was the norm in Wyoming. A five-minute lecture in 1999 on how web servers work was all it took for Bill to see the creativity and beauty in website coding and design. Starting in Wyoming as a website developer and systems administrator working for an ISP, another sysadmin role at the National Outdoor Leadership School, IT has taken him to such far-flung places like Kansas and Ireland for year-long stints with a software development company and back to Lander, Wyoming to continue learning about all things IT with an accounting company. He founded his own IT shop in 2006 and formed a website hosting company WindHosting in 2009, a full-service hosting, site design, development and graphics company that he runs with his wife/business partner. They both administer a 3000+ member Lander community email list and website. Bill took ownership of another website design and hosting company, Cheyenne Technology in 2017 and has been busy ever since. Toss in Crossfit sessions and a continued passion for guitars and you have a busy Bill. This is his first year working with the Stage Stop website and he says he’s enjoyed learning the site and is looking forward to making the site the best it can be.
|SEBASTIAN SCHNUELLE — 2020 RACE COMMENTATOR
Originally from Germany, Sebastian Schnuelle has been mushing since 1995. He first started running dogs in Algonquin Park, Ontario. After moving to the Yukon and living an off-the-grid lifestyle, he opened his Tour Business “Blue Kennels” offering wilderness trips in the Yukon’s back country. Soon after that he became interested in sled dog racing.
After running mid-distance races (Kasko, Copper Basin 300, Kobus) he ran seven Yukon Quests and seven Iditarods, winning the Yukon Quest in 2009 and placing second in the Iditarod; he received the Veterinarians Choice award in both races. Since retiring from long distance running and racing, Sebastian has volunteered as a race official for many races as well provided race commentary for the Iditarod as their “Armchair Musher,” snow machining the entire Iditarod Trail from Anchorage to Nome.