NAME: Clint Graham / Speedback Kennels
NICKNAME: I can’t write it here obviously.
STATE: South Australia
CLUB: Wild Dog Mushers
PLACE WHERE I TRAIN: Mt Crawford Forest up in the Adelaide Hills near Williamstown
DISCIPLINES: Dryland Sprint
WHEN DID YOU START MUSHING: 1996 with Malamutes
THE BEST RESULTS: Back to back 6 Dog National Champion
MY HARDEST SLED DOG RACE: Day 2 of the 2011 Undera race after we had to put one of our old Malamutes down after the night heat on day 1. Lining up on day 2 sucked!
THE MOST EXCITING MOMENT DURING A RACE: Heading to the start line in Alaska at the 2013 IFSS World Championships and hearing my name being called out over the PA system “Clint Graham from Australia!”
WHAT DO I LIKE ABOUT THE SPORT: Building a team that performs at their best whenever we hit the trails and knowing we bred that whole team is such a thrill. I love everything about the sport really………except getting up at 5am on the rainy days just for a training run
FAVOURITE RACE: I’d have to say Wild Dog because we set the tracks and we know there will be no surprises. ;-) I haven’t found a race I don’t like, All of them have good points.
WHY SLED DOG RACING : Started as just something to go check out with Jake (Our first malamute) then I thought “Hell yeah let’s have a go at this!” and now look at us. Sled dog racing has gotten me to some amazing places nationally & internationally both as a musher and spectator, truly amazing.
HOW OFTEN DO YOU TRAIN: Usually train up to 3 times a week.
THE SPORT IN AUSTRALIA: Is growing again with the introduction of Canicross and Bikejoring it has opened the doors to more of the everyday person. The popularity of the sport has grown with more of the non-traditional dog breeds coming out.
It will always be hard to grow a sport in a country where the majority of the population are shocked when you say “I race sled dogs” Most people answer with the usual reply of “I didn’t even know it existed here!” ASSA and even the IFSS have all helped with the sport growing here by giving races a more professional look. People don’t look at it like just a bunch of dog people in the forest when they see National and International organizations supporting local clubs and their races.
Australia’s ranking in the eyes of the world of sled dog racing has risen with the high level of dogs and racing and with ASSA working with the IFSS it can only be a good thing for the sport.