The GCI Open North American starts today

FAIRBANKS, Ak-The GCI Open North American Championships started today around one o' clock this afternoon. 15 mushers had an interval start in downtown Fairbanks on second avenue and it was a sight to see.
John Erhart started it off followed by Paula Ciniero, Mike Fields, Mark Hartum of Canada, Jack Berry, Marvin Kokrine, Jessie Holme, Ken Chezik, Greg Sellenti, Rob Worden, Don Cousins.

Egil Ellis wore bib number 12. That bib number, twelve, is ironic because he has won the Open North 12 times. At 13 was Michael Tetzner, then Mike Stephens
and Arleigh Reynolds at 15 to complete the field.

8 IFSS mushers were also in the race which runs through Sunday.

Channell 11 Sports talked to Erhart who won the Open North American pole if you will by draw. He talked about leading off this major event and his strategy for the race.

"I just want to try to have three clean runs in a row, that's my goal. It's just one of the better races in Alaska. It's one of the best races up here," Erhart said.