Race Rules

The race follows the IFSS regulations, International Federation of Sleddog Sports Race Rules and Nationel rules to IFSS rules, all stylies.

National Rules
Polardistans – Extension rules
Polardistans – Dog care
Working Dog Test – Rules

The races are approximately 160 km and 300 km, and is only open for registered polar dogs of the breeds Alaskan Malamute, Greenland Dog, Samoyed and Siberian Husky.


  • Category B: Alaskan Malamute, Greenland Dog, Samoyed.
    Category C: Siberian Husky.
  • Men and women are running in the same class in both styles and all classes.
  • Minimum age for drivers is 18 in all classes.
  • In pulka style the dogs may run in double file.
  • All sleds in the pulka classes shall have brakes, regardless of team size.
  • The pulka/sledge size must be sufficiently large so that equipment that has been vacuum compressed at the start even fits in when unpacked
  • In nome B you may use a shaft of maximum 10 mm covered glass fiber. All necklines must have plastic hooks, tree pins and plastic balls. The smallest (3/8”) of the piston snap hook may also be used.
  • Metal BGB-hooks1/ are NOT allowed in nome style but can be used in pulka style if they are attached to solid shafts.
  • The competition has mass start, the classes can be put together.
  • All dogs must be registered and marked with microchip. Tattoo in the ear will not be accepted. See document: Dogcare
  • At the registration all the original pedigrees and vaccination certificate will be checked.
  • Absence of registration certificates in original, not meeting the vaccination requirements, lacks in the mandatory equipment or that musher or handler does not participate in the mandatory means that the team is not aloud to start. The starting fee will not be returned in these cases.
  • If the musher or handler does not participate in the mandatory meeting are they not allowed to start. The starting fee will not be returned in these case.
  • ALL mushers must submit a completed registration form for the Swedish polar dog working test (Anmälan meritering), filled in on a computer! This list is useing as a chiplist.
Distance Number of dogs
Start Finishline
MD 160 pulka Max 4 1
MD 160 nome B 8 Max 8 4/5 *
MD 160 nome C 8 Max 8 4/5 *
LD 300 pulka Max 4 1
LD 300 nome B 8-12 Max 12 7
LD 300 nome C 8 Max 8 5

*/5 or 6 dogs at start, then min 4 dogs to the finishline

*/7 or 8 dogs at start, then min 5 dogs to the finishline


On race day(test day) the dogs will achieve this age:

Alaskan malamute 24 month 24 month DP 100+
DP 250+
Greenland dog 24 month 24 month DP 100+
DP 250+
Samoyed 24 month 24 month DP 100+
DP 250+
Siberian husky 18 month 24 month DP 20+    ONLY NOME  



Swedish participants must have green card and liability insurance. (SDSF’s racing license does not apply to Polardistans). Non Swedish mushers must have a “musher pass” and/or bring documentation of a privat liablity insurance covering this kind of sporting activity. (The documentation preferable written in english or german). Bring it to the secretariat when you go to the registration.


The trail goes mainly along the marked snowmobile trails. The trail marking is complemented by race signs with reflective tapes and warnings at road crossings.

We follow the IFFS’s rules for marking and you can read more about this on the IFSS/SDSF website www.draghundsport.se


Search and rescue operations will normally be initiated 24 hours after the last point of contact. Unnecessary stops between the checkpoints should therefore be avoided. In the event conditions require that a search and rescue action be initiated earlier, the decision to do so will be made by the race organisation together with the emergency services. Paritcipants shall at all times have enough food and equipment to survive for at least 24 hours.
Only 24 hours after having left the checkpoint the musher may use the emergency food for himself and the dogs. This means that a musher must att all times ensure that he has the emergency ration of food for himself and his dogs upon leaving any checkpoint


The list of the required equipment is available on the website. Dates and times for equipment control are in the program on the website. If the equipment is not complete and approved by the competition’s race judges the team is not allowed to start. Equipment control should be performed prior to the musher/handler meetings. The team that starts on Tuesday are inspected with priority on Monday. Random inspections will also be carried out during the race. The equipment will also be controlled at the finish line.

Mandatory equipment that is lost or broken during the competition can be replaced at checkpoint against a time penalty of one (1) hour. Any replacement or change of equipment must be approved by the race marshal/race judge or checkpoint manager and it is to be noted in checkpoint book and reported to the secretariat. If mandatory equipment is missing during the random inspections during the race or at the inspection at the finish line the team gets a time penalty of 3 hours.


This year’s ”Polar distance” goes back to basics and reintroduces mass start (in each competition class) down on the frozen lake. Classes with few competitors may be combined with other classes and start together (simultaneously).
Poles will be put into the ice on the starting line. Its very important that each team be fastened to the pole at ice-level.
There will be ample time to assemble your team on the starting line between each class-start.
Officials with access to snow-scooters will be available for those who wish to have assistance in getting to the starting area.


The trail goes through reindeer grazing areas. The dogs must therefore be kept under strict control. Participants are responsible for any damage he / she dog team causing reindeer.


At the registration every participants will receive a veterinary handbook. This shall be given to the veterinarian at the checkpoint in connection with the mandatory veterinary checks. A team cannot leave the checkpoint without the veterinary handbook has been signed by a veterinarian.
No dogs are allowed to be dropped from the competition without a veterinary inspection. All dropped dogs must be noted in the veterinary handbook. At any time a veterinarian can request a re-check before a team is allowed to leave the checkpoint and continue the competition. The veterinarian can even require an extra re-check at the next checkpoint.  A re-check of the dogs may also be required at the checkpoint for PD160. The veterinarian can even demand a rest and a new re-check before it is decided if the team are allow to continue or not.
Injuries to dogs shall be reported to the veterinarian and be noted in veterinary handbook. The veterinarian reports all injuries and dropped dogs to the race organizer.
It is the participant’s responsibility that the veterinary handbook is signed by the veterinarian at all inspections.
At the finish, the veterinary handbook shall be given to the veterinarian who control the team.
Lost veterinary handbook results in disqualification!


All dogs starting at the Polardistans should be tagged with a dog tag attached to each dog’s ‘ collar. The dog tags are handed out in connection with the pre-start veterinary inspection.


Along the trail is one checkpoint that the teams have to pass through. PD300 passes the checkpoint two (2) times and PD160 once. Water is available for all teams at the checkpoint and it is possible to leave a tires, injured or sick dog at the checkpoint. The musher is responsible that a dropped dog is picked up at the checkpoint by the handler.

The checkpoint is closing Friday the 8th of March at 04.00. All teams must have left the checkpoint at the time. If a team leaves the checkpoint after the closing time the team will be shut off from the competition. The closing date and time can be changed by the race jury.


Polardistans 160 has 1 mandatory rest of 2 hours. The rest is taken out of the checkpoint Öjvassla.

PD300 has two (2) mandatory rests: one rest of six (6) hours and one rest of four (4) hours. These two rests have to be taken at the checkpoint and they cannot not be added together to one rest of 10 hours. The two rest can be taken in which order the participant wants and the rests can of cause at any time be extended if desired.


The musher and handler meeting is mandatory for mushers and handlers. The dates and times for the meetings are published in the program on the website.


The handler may help at the start and finish area to take care of the musher’s dogs. At the checkpoint, the handler may only help to lead the team in and out from the checkpoint and help the team to park at the designated pole. The handler may stand guard behind the sledge if the musher is sleeping, but are not in any way allowed to help with the dogs. Only the teams own handler is allowed around the team at checkpoint area.

When the team is parked on the designated parking pole, the handler or the musher shall provide the starting number for the pole to one of the volunteers and the volunteer will attach the number to the pole. The team will be parked at the same pole when coming into the checkpoint the second time. This is to prevent the risk of infection to spread.

Handlers and mushers may meet within the marked area around the fire. Dropped dogs can be handed over to the handler at this marked area as well.

A musher not having a handler has to notify this upon the registration in the secretariat and the race organizer will instruct the volunteers to pay extra attention and help teams without a handler. If one person is handling several teams it has to be notified to the secretariat in connection with the registration. It is important that the handler has the handler bit with the right number on when handling the teams to avoid any misunderstandings.


OBS!Only dog food, isolating mattress and blankets for the dogs is allowed in the depot bags!

The mushers bring their own bags and the handlers are responsible for the bags being available at the right place at the right time at the checkpoint.

The bags must be clearly labelled with the name and the starting number of the musher. The bags may only contain cold or dry dog food (not wet food or heated and no cooling bag boxes) and *isolated mattressesfor the dogs to rest at wit a blanket. The musher himself/herself has to get the bag from the designated place and return the empty or used bag/bags to the same location. Handler is responsible for removing the empty or used bag/bags –and it also applies if the team drops out of the competition. Control of the depot bags will be done at the checkpoint.

*Isolated mattress is replacing straws this year at Polardistans, approved by Swedish Board of Agriculture.


Water and straw are available at the checkpoint for all teams. The musher has to get the water from the designated area. The water bottles must be returned to the same location as soon as possible.


In connection with the registration in the secretariat the musher receives a start number (orange) which has to be attached to the pulka/sledge during the entire race. A second BIB with the starting number in black has to worn by the mushers during the entire competition. A third BIB with the starting number in red and even marked with hander has to worn by the handlar as soon as he/she in araound the team during the competition.  All 3 BIBS must be return to the volunteer at the finish line. Non-returned BIBS will be invoiced to the musher after the competition.


Dog that during the race is taken into a car, a house or similar cannot continue the race.


Volunteers or handlers may help to guide the team in and out of the checkpoint. Volunteers direct the team to a designated pole for a short or a long stop. Mushers are not allowed to receive any other help during the race other than to control, slow down and keep the team at the checkpoints. Help to get the team started is not allowed.

If a pulka/sledge/ski/pole is broken, the musher may get help from the handler. The handover of the replacement equipment shall take place at checkpoint unless otherwise agreed with the race marshal, race judge or checkpoint manager. The change of equipment must be approved prior to the handover by the race marshal, race judge or checkpoint manger. The musher must repack the sledge, not taking any help from anyone and then leave the broken sled/sledge/ski/pole to the handler.

Otherwise, no help is allowed during the race.


If a dog dies during the race, it must be transported to the checkpoint or the finish area. The dog should be carried in the sled and be covered upon arrival at checkpoint/finish area. Upon arrival the musher shall contact a veterinarian, race marshal, race judge or checkpoint manager. If possible, the musher or his handler, shall inform a veterinarian or the race organizers that a dog has died before the team reaches the checkpoint/finish area. If possible, the dog can be picked up at an agreed place. The musher can continue in the competition if the first check clearly shows that the dog has died of causes other than neglect.


Any protest shall be given in writing on the designated form, no later than one (1) hour after the finish. Protest fee is 300 SEK.