An athlete from tropical Jamaica could become the first black musher to complete the world’s longest dog sled race. Later this month, Newton Marshall, 26, will take part in the Iditarod, a 1,150-mile dog-sled race across the icy wilderness of Alaska. The race is hailed as one of the world’s great endurance tests.Marshall’s entrance in the race echoes the success of the Jamaican bobsled team in the 1988 Winter Olympics, which inspired the movie “Cool Runnings.”
But his entry is no joke. Last year he completed the lengthy Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race. Out of 29 mushers, Marshall finished a respectable 13th.Marshall, who lives in Jamaica’s St. Anne Parish, said he was impatient to begin the Iditarod, which kicks off with a ceremonial start in Anchorage on Saturday. The competitive race begins on Sunday in Willow, 50 miles to the north.