Team Lapland

Taisto's blog !

wed, 25. nov 2020 - 18:15 h
Back on track !

Finally we seem to get some snow. Need little more to run with sled. I have had extremely lot of bad luck , miss fortune and even done some stupid decisions... among other things, I broke my neck and back in 3 places: but now, finally things start to look better. Still having a couple of teams that can compete on very high level in long mid distance and shorter long distance , I need to prove that this winter incase we are allwed to run any races due to the on going Covid - 19...
More later , just testing if anyone is checking in to and reading this page.../ Taisto

mon, 22. jan 2018 - 22:25 h
First race of season finally done !

We went 3 teams to Tromsquest from Lapland Wilderness Tours/team Lapland - me andtwo of our guides who did their first races, and we did it good. There was 27 teams at the limited class starting line. Hannah Bonhotal finished 10th, Joe Pickles 6th and I won! So for me it is one done and 4 to go ! It will be Femundlopet, Amundsenrace, Finnmarkslopet and finally Gold Rush Run. Training have been quite good, even if there was lot of work with the dogs aswell. All looking good for the upcoming races. / Taisto

sat, 18. nov 2017 - 20:07 h

We are pleased to confirm:We got enough snow ( and ice) to run the Kauppinen Wide Open Championship 2017 ! Start date 25 November at 12.00 from Kauppinen, overnight in our cabin in Kaperasjärvi. Distance = 106 km. Next morning start at 08.30 - finish Kauppinen. Distance 82 km. Total race distance = 188 km.
Also possible to run just first day. Dinner, overnight place/bed and breakfast included is entry fee: 800 SEK/team, to cover food & trail making & marking. NOT over 10 dogs recommended, since it is hard to get down the snow hook in many places.CALL ME FOR SIGNING IN ! 0046(0)70 205 9024 / Taisto

sat, 30. sep 2017 - 07:12 h
Looking towards Finnmakslöpet

the training have been good so far, or, as I moore see it: the preparations for the training to come... Last night we did a 28 km run - the longest this season for us. So far only 295 km in total - I will wait for a cm snow before we go for much longer runs. Now there is "only" 12 of 16 dogs from Nurmi - Nicky breedings in my A-team...two females, Elin & XeRoxy have small puppies, Elin did her first run two day ago with the "old farts team", but in a month she is back in the A-team.XeRoxy have about 3 week old puppies so she will not be running in a while. Look also forward to the Sleddog Symphosium -especially the Veterinary seminar on Friday...I have a feeling that i learn more from the vets ( and get reminded of things I forgot) than from other mushers, but if it is nice to meet friends and competitors aswell./Taisto

mon, 18. sep 2017 - 19:38 h
Training in full swing

I am training what I belive one of the very best teams I ever had for little longer distance...actually we have two good teams , but to be realistic: i can not give both of the teams same good training. And there is four more 216 dog teams to work with, too.Just now we are only on 20 km runs, but could easily do longer if I wanted, but that would wear out the claws on them, since I am partly running on gravel soil. Also, team is signed in to Finnmarkslopet 2018 = New, 545 km long trail, which is very interesting for me. Hopefully more of the trail hard packed well used trails... Also 3 litters of totally 18 puppies are born this fall. I will keep minimum 12 of them, one goes to Jan Slosar & two to Craig Robertson... That´s all. See you at the Seminar ?

older blogposts


About Taisto

Taisto Thorneus' former occupation was machine engineer & mechanic. He left that branch in 1983 to work full time with sleddogs. Since that time he runs the wilderness tourism business Lapland Wilderness Tours in Kiruna, Swedish Lapland. Taisto is married to Karina since 1974. They have one adult son.
The first sleddog race Taisto participated in was in December 1980. In 1981 his first longer race - the first edition of the Nordic Marathon - took place. In 1982 Taisto’s so far best result was 4th place in the limited class of Nordic Marathon. In 1983 he became second in Nordic Marathon open class.
The season 1983-84 was his best season so far - unbeaten in all sleddog races he participated in: Amongst them the first edition of Gausdal Marathon (250 km) in limited class and Nordic Marathon open class.
Already in 1985 operating the own tourism business started to affect his competition activities but he finished second in Finnmarkslopet and third in Nordic Marathon.
1986: 4th in Finmarkslopet – after what Taisto feels the biggest strategic mistake he has ever made (or could make again) in a race: In Mollisjokk, about 75 km from finish line in Alta, he had an over three hours advance, but also some tired sleddogs in the team. He decided neither to rest nor to leave the tired dogs at the checkpoint in order to break the all in time record… After short stop for feeding the dogs in good shape ate the food and got even more geared and eager to go, while the tired sleddogs did not eat. Starting from Mollisjokk the fresh dogs put up a real high speed, resulting in that the tired dogs could not keep up… Arriving to Jiesjarvi Taisto had two dogs travelling on the sled and one more dog getting to tired to keep up. He decided to make a real long stop to rest and recover the tired dogs.
After over 8 hours rest he had been passed by three sleddog-teams (Sven Engholm, Stein-Håvard Fjestad and Kent Hugosson). Two of the tired dogs had recovered enough to run in slow speed to the last checkpoint (Joatka) about 15 km away, while the 3rd still was riding on the sled. After taking it real slow to Joatka, Taisto dropped the three dogs at the checkpoint and took off with the ones in top shape. Unfortunately the distance to the finish line was too short to catch up any of the three musher’s ahead…
1988: Taisto took part in the first edition of the Alpirod. 12th overall
1992: He won the Vindelälvsdraget individual class – still unbeaten track record – also outrunning 6 relay teams on the 400 km distance.
1993: Taisto went to Alaska to compete in the Iditarod but caught salmonella 4 days before the race started and of course wasn’t able to participate in this sleddog race.
1994: He organized and coached the 77 year old Mushing legend Joe Redington. Joe raced with Taisto’s sleddogs in the Olympics' demonstration race in Lillehammer. He finished 3rd in the 300 km competition…
Taisto took part in the Finmarkslopet 1000 km and finished 7th.
1995-2004: The business took all his time so Taisto didn’t race at all; though he continued the breeding-program with Alaskan Huskies and searched for the “perfect team”…
2005-2008: There was still no time for Taisto for serious training, but he started in some races to see if he was on the right track… Now the realization of the new competitive sleddog racing kennel had reached a stage that he decided to pick up serious racing again. A less active part in running the tourism business is still enough work...

Still Taisto felt one part was missing for the launch of a real competitive sleddog kennel: Some proven and experienced dogs. That was solved by buying four experienced top quality Alaskan Huskies from Ken Anderson who finished second on Yukon Quest (beaten only by 15 minutes by Lance Mackey).
Bahdra, 5 years old male & Jango, 6 years old female, both run full Quest and Iditarod.
Jango finished Yukon Quest in lead, Ken and his team finished Iditarod as number 4.
Suraya 5 years old female, finished Iditarod in lead. And finally an now three years old big male, Jordan, who was dropped half way to Nome, because he was working too hard and was loosing weight, according to Ken Anderson.

2009 - forward: Now the new sleddog racing team is there – it is just to prepare it!

Why Alaskan Huskies ?

Does not need to be Alaskan Huskies, but if I answer that question I would say: For me it is not only the reason – it is because Alaskan Huskies in total. If I add all aspects and expectations I have regarding dogs, the Alaskan is outstanding compared to any other type of sled dog. I am talking about the more of an “Indian village” type of Alaskan Husky than the more “Houndy” & ”Euro Hound” type of Alaskans:

...they are more versatile than any other type/ breed
...they are fast enough to compete even in shorter race on a high level.
...they have stamina
...they have coat enough to cope with Arctic weather conditions
...they are easy to use for people with limited experience
...they are also very friendly or ignorant to foreign dogs and other animals
...they have by nature desire to run fast

Alaskan Huskies respond relatively fast to training and have very few if any genetic problems. (The problems in my opinion, gets bigger that more “houndy” the Alaskans are – you “buy” little more speed by “paying” with more sensitive/fragile feet/pads and thinner coat… which force you to support the dogs more in terms of more bootie use, fabric coats on the dogs, more food just to keep them warm and so on.)




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