Musher Profile - Daniel Odgers


 

This Article has been sourced from HIKE Magazine Australia

I am 16. I am the youngest of 4 children. I live with my Mum Julie & Dad Nick & my Brother Michael & Sisters Melanie & Felicity. We all live at Greensborough in Victoria.

Apart from my love of mushing I really enjoy mountain bike riding with my Brother Michael. During the summer we spend a lot of time down the Beach Where I enjoy Surfing & Body Boarding.



Dan on a training run 
Photo: S Creely


CLUBS: 

I have been an active member of the Southern Cross Sled Dog Club for the past 3 years.

WHEN DID YOU FIRST START MUSHING: 
I started mushing in 1997. I saw my first Husky when I was about 4 years old & started to nag Mum & Dad to get me one. Dad would take me to the Melbourne Show so that I could watch the judging of the dogs. It was at the Show that we first discovered that the dogs where not only used for showing but for racing as well. My enthusiasm did not get less, it got bigger & when I was 9 years old Mum & Dad had no choice but to give in & bought me Mishka. I soon became very well known in the local area as The Dog Boy. As every day after school I would hook Mishka up to my bike & hoon around the streets as I was too little to walk her. The trips to the Show continued till we met up with David Pettifer who was running a VSDRA stand. David pointed me in the right direction. It didn’t take long before Dad & I started going to meetings & workshops. 


HOW MANY & WHAT TYPE OF DOGS DO YOU 
HAVE: 
I now have 2 Siberians Huskies as Mishka is getting too old for racing Keisha has taken over. Mishka started as just a pet & as I became more interested in racing she was a great help in getting me started. Keisha has the running lines that are needed to continue to excel in the sport.

MOST MEMORABLE INCIDENT IN MUSHING:
Being given the opportunity to race in the B60. Due to my young age the length of the race was modified to 30km. The experance of the night race & the distance with a large team has made me detirmand to continue to try my hand at these types of events. I am very grateful to Steve Carrick of believing that I could manage such a challange.

WHAT IS THE FUNNIEST INCIDENT: 
When I was racing in the B60, Jason Strenger came past me & as he did he asked me if I had seen his shoe. He continued past me with 1 shoe & a wet & dirty sock. I thought at the time “If I was in front of him how would I see his shoe.”

WHAT ARE YOUR PERSONAL GOALS IN THE SPORT:
My passion has now become to run as many long distance races as I can. Being out on the trail with the dogs for all those hours is something I love & I just can’t get enough.

ADVICE FOR THE YOUNG MUSHERS:
Never give up, no matter how hard it seems. If you really want to race with the “Big Boys” don’t get discouraged because you are too young. The time spent in the juniors will help you when you come up against the “Big Boys” or ”Girls.”

TRAINING TIP:
I find the best training tip is to train as often as you can under similar race conditions: With other people or find a trail that is challenging to keep the dogs on the ball. Train with a friend. I get Dad to drive me to Narbethong on the weekend when we are not at a race.

WHAT DO YOU ATTRIBUTE TO YOU SUCCESS SO FAR:
Hard work from both myself & of course my Dad because without his support I would not be able to race at all. Most of all I need to acknowledge Karen McCarthy for all the help & knowledge she has shared with me, & the loan of her dogs to make up the team. Without Karen I would not have been able to compete in the races that I have in the past 2 years. Also all the people that have supported and encouraged me. 


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Email: sled-dog@ihug.co.nz