Melissa
Owens

LATEST

Mellissa is a musher in the 2011 Iditarod. 
Owens, the 2nd youngest woman ever, finished 30th of 95 mushers and took home $1,800 in the 2008 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. She was the 2nd rookie to cross the line. She scratched in 2009.

Bio
Results
Melissa Owens makes it home
Related Issue: Iditarod Racers, Women Racers Directory, Women in Racing, Women Racers, More Women in Racing, Race Schedules, Notable Women
Contact:
www.owlcreekkennels.com

Snippets


Melissa Owens is the 2nd youngest woman to complete the Iditarod and finished 30th. She’s older by five days than Ellie Claus, who ran as a rookie in 2004, finishing 45th. Owens’ birthday is Feb. 18 and Claus was born on Feb. 23.

Melissa Owens, 19, was born in Nome and has spent her whole life there. She is still a high school student, involved in AE21, a distance learning program. Melissa says that "mushing is in my blood." She said she began mushing "as soon as I could stand on the runners. My family had a team and my dad ran Iditarod the year I was born." She completed four Jr. Iditarod races and was the 2005 champion. She raises and trains most of her own dogs. She says, "I love racing and loved my trip last year. I love working with my dogs and am really excited about the team this year. They are some really good athletes. Melissa's hobbies are gymnastics, dogs and mushing.

Bio

2008 Rookie
Melissa Owens will be one of the youngest to run the Iditarod and the 2nd youngest girl. She won’t turn 18 until February 18. She was born and raised in Nome where she has lived her whole life. She is still a high school student, involved in AE21, a distance learning program. Melissa says that “mushing is in my blood.” When she was an infant, her dad, Michael, took her on stage with him to draw his starting number and now, 18 years later she will be drawing her own starting number. She has completed four Jr. Iditarod races and was the 2005 champion. She has also run the Jr. Quest, the Tug Bar and the Don Bowers 200 as well as Nome Kennel Club races. She raises and trains most of her own dogs and has worked closely with DeeDee Jonrowe the last several years. She has also worked with the Willis family for many years. Melissa’s hobbies are school, gymnastics, hiking and dogs.

Results

Owens, the 2nd youngest woman ever, finished 30th of 95 mushers and took home $1,800 in the 2008 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. She was the 2nd rookie to cross the line.

Melissa Owens makes it home


The youngest woman ever to run the Iditarod crossed the finish line with her leaders this morning to the cheers of a large crowd gathered around the burled arch that marks the end of the race. Making it even more special for 18-year-old Melissa Owens, she was home.

Owens lives in Nome, growing up here in a dog mushing family. Her father, Mike, ran the race twice when Melissa was still in diapers and has been involved with the race since, whether it’s helping coordinate support in Nome or, currently, as a board member. “She is an Iditarod kid,” Mike Owens said.

“It is an emotional time for me because this truly is a dream come true,” he added, a faraway look in his eye as he sat on the snow with his back against a support beam of the burled arch. “She has lived a dream. She probably wishes the finish line was in Teller.” (Teller is about 75 miles away.)

Owens was the 30th musher out of a record field of 95 who started this year’s race, putting her in the last paying position. She’ll get a trophy in addition to the coveted finisher’s belt buckle and a little over $1,000 in prize money.

The Iditarod has been a dream of Owens since she was a little girl. She couldn’t wait until her 14th birthday so that she could run the Junior Iditarod, a race she won two years ago. Owens, known for being unflappable and determined (like a lot of Nome’s children), needed all of her character to deal with the journey that led her from Willow across 1,000 miles of remote Alaska back to her home town.

She grabbed her lead dogs’ tug lines the final half mile through town because the dogs were a little bewildered by the cars, people and buildings after going for weeks seeing only country. “They saw vehicles and thought, ‘Oh we’ll sleep,’ or ‘maybe they have food,’ ” she said at the finish line.

Asked if this will be an annual event for her, Owens, replied, “We’ll see.” It usually takes a little recovery time before mushers find themselves unconsciously planning for the next year’s race.
Source: iditarodblogs.com/news/2008/03/13/melissa-owens-makes-it-home

*    *    *



WomenInRacing.org
©1996-2017 by of Gordon Clay