Cim Smyth bests Paul Gebhardt for 3rd place in Kuskokwim 300

by Ben Matheson on January 19, 2014

Cim Smyth mushes down the Kuskokwim River on the way to a 3rd place place finish in the 2014 Kuskokwim 300.  Photo by Chris Pike

Cim Smyth mushes down the Kuskokwim River on the way to a 3rd place place finish in the 2014 Kuskokwim 300. Photo by Chris Pike

Cim Smyth made up a six minute gap to pass 2011 champion Paul Gebhardt in the final 12 miles of the race. Smyth arrived in Bethel at 10:55 Sunday morning to receive third place.

The 37-year-old Big Lake musher improved upon his career best fifth place in his fourth running of the race. His dogs loped up the chute, pulling in two of their teammates.

“I’ve got two dogs in the sled. I was definitely feeling the pressure and [Paul] knew I had them in there and he knew that he was keeping the pressure on me,” said Smyth.

Paul Gebhardt pulls into the chute to finish 4th in the 2014 Kuskokwim 300.  Photo by Chris Pike

Paul Gebhardt pulls into the chute to finish 4th in the 2014 Kuskokwim 300. Photo by Chris Pike

Smyth passed the 57-year-old Kasilof musher about 12 miles from the finish. He also passed Gebardt at the finish of the Iditarod last year. Gebhardt arrived at 11:00 with a string of ten dogs.

Gebhardt, the 2011 K300 race champion, said that his veteran team included the core of the team won the race for him in 2011.

Smyth gets $11,000 for his third place finish. Gebhardt earns $7,700 for fourth place.

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