Sunday, February 5, 2017

Canadian Challenge; Jennifer Campeau

Jennifer Campeau from Atka Kennel out of Rocky Mountain House.

If any part of that sentence sounds familiar,  it could be because Jennifers' husband, Jason, has run the Challenge coming in 3rd place in 2014.  Or it could be the fact he ran the Iditarod twice and as I write this is running his second Yukon Quest...BUT.... It shouldn't be the reason that the name sounds familiar.  
It should be because Jennifer won the open class at the Canadian Challenge in 2014 and it should be because she won the 2014 Eagle Cap Extreme Pot race   It should also be because she qualified in two races last year at the Eagle Cap Extreme and Race to the Sky.  
OR How about that this year she will be using this race to Qualify in order to run either the Iditarod or the Yukon Quest with her husband next year.

6 years ago Jennifer and her family moved from Ontario to Alberta making the decision to live on an acreage.  It had been Jason's boyhood dream to own and run sled dogs and now that they lived in a location to allow this he bought a few dogs for the family to enjoy.    This however (and maybe it was his plan all along) hooked the entire family and they ended up with enough dogs for both Jason and Jennifer to each run their own team.

Jennifer is back using the Challenge as her final qualifier as she really enjoyed her last experience here saying it was a really well run race and the hospitality was great at all the check points.

10 of her 12 dogs are between 1 and 2 years old.  All Rookies to the Canadian Challenge and in fact running their second race in their first year of racing.   It is all about learning and growing for the pups as Jennifer shared with me the experience of the first check stop in which all the dogs stood the entire time, tails wagging with a wondering look at 'Mom' as if to say, "what's going on, what are you up to?"
By the time they hit the second check stop they quickly figured things out and settled down to rest.  Jennifer is quite excited about this young team, especially her new young leader Easton.  At 2 years of age he is fast and knows all of his commands.

Jennifer will not be alone in this race as her twin daughters will be coming along, the perfect cheering squad.   Knowing family is waiting at each check stop (even if it can only be to share a smile when you are qualifying) makes each run have a sweet purpose.
Photo Credit; Jennifers Facebook Profile

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