Tobacco Trail follows three sets of rules. They are:
- IFSS (open as pdf file)
- National Rules (open as pdf file)
- Tobacco Trail Rules (see below or open as pdf file)
Drivers are required to know all the rules when they participate in the competition.
Rules for the Tobacco Trail
The musher must be at least 18 years old, have a valid racing license and the dogs must be vaccinated and chip marked. Swedish mushers also have to have a Green Card.
The musher has to be present at the mushers meetings that will be held before the race and also other meetings that might be announced. The judge may excuse a musher that has been delayed by unforeseen circumstances. In this case, the musher is obliged to find out the information shared at the missed meeting.
The sled should be equipped with sufficient brakes, scooter mat, brush bow, TWO snow hooks as well as a sled bag. The scooter mat should be of sufficient size to control the team.
Help at checkpoints
Participants may receive help braking, holding and steering the team to, and out from, marked areas. This kind of help can only be received within marked area at the checkpoint. No other outside help is allowed and handlers should stay behind the marked line whilst dog teams occupy the checkpoint area.
LDL : 6 hours mandatory rest + time adjustment in Övre Soppero
LDU: 2 hours mandatory rest + time adjustment in Övre Soppero + 6 hours mandatory rest to be taken between checkpoints Saivomuotka and/or Lannavaara.
Checkpoints are to be seen as control posts of the race. The musher has to carry the bib number when arriving at and leaving the checkpoint. Both musher and handler have to carry their bib number while they are in the stake out area.
The handler must rake the straw after its musher and team has left the checkpoint. Equipment and trash bags are provided by the organizer.
Checkpoint Saivomuotka will close 10 hours after the first team have left the checkpoint.
Checkpoint Lannavaara will close 15 hours after the first team have left the checkpoint.
The race organization remains the right to change/adapt these times. This means that the race committee will not have officials in place. The musher can continue and write down their own time of departure.
There are depots at every checkpoint. Depot bags should be marked with the musher's name and bib number and put in the marked area. Changing sleds is allowed. Cooling bag, or suchlike equipment, that is in the depot bag shall be empty and be taken out empty by the musher to the staging area. It is not allowed to provide warm water or mixed dog food.
The musher must collect and return the depot bag and all contents from/to the staging area. The same goes for equipment and potential waste going from the staging area back to the depot.
The following equipment is required to have in the sled during the competition. There is a general requirement that the equipment will be functional in order to be approved. The equipment is checked before the start, at checkpoints and at the finish.
- Two snow hooks
- Maps/snowmobile trail maps
- Veterinarian handbook (will be distributed upon checking in)
- Water cooker and pot, capable of heating a minimum of ½ litre per dog. This is to be carried in the sled for the entire race
- Magnetic compass
- Snow shovel
- Axe or long knife (min. 20 cm blade)
- Sleeping bag for extreme winter (-30C, min. 2kg)
- Extreme survival bag for extreme weather (min. 1.2kg). An alternative is a tent
- Extra set of clothing
- First aid kit for musher and dogs
- Head lamp and batteries
- 8 socks/dog from every checkpoint, including the ones being used
- Reserve dog food, ½ kg per dog in the team at start. This food is to be packed, sealed and carried to the finish unopened, regardless the number of dogs dropped in the race
- The musher has to have food for min. 24 hours to him/herself in the sled at the finish
Mandatory gear that is lost or damaged can be taken/replaced from the depot bag. Any replacement of mandatory gear must first be approved by a judge/race marshal/checkpoint official. Used dog booties, headlamp/batteries, rubbish sack and fuel for the water cooker/primus can be replaced from depot.
Caring and feeding of dogs
All feeding and care of dogs shall happen outdoors and only be carried out by the musher. Only cold water may be fetched for preparing dog food.
If a dog dies during the race on the trail between checkpoints, it is to be taken to the next checkpoint or back to the previous checkpoint. The dog is to be transported in the sled and to be covered upon arriving to the checkpoint. The musher shall without delay after checking in notify the race organiser as represented by the race marshal, race director and/or race veterinarian. The musher can only continue the race after obtaining permission to do so by the race marshal, race director and/or race veterinarian. The musher can be disqualified from further participation should it be evident from investigations that the musher is guilty of abuse of the dog or if having in any other way caused the death of the dog. The musher can also be disqualified if he/she at an earlier checkpoint has been told in writing to drop the dog, unless its death was caused by entirely different reasons. If an autopsy of the dog is required, the musher will not be charged.
There shall be cable in the centre tow line.
No Man's Land
No Man's Land starts at least 1 km before the finishing line and shall be clearly marked. The trail in this stretch shall be broad enough for dog teams to pass each other.
Breaking the rules
Breaking the rules regarding outside assistance can lead to disqualification of the musher.
The trail goes partly through reindeer grazing areas. The dogs must therefore be kept under strict control. The musher is liable for damages caused by his/her team to reindeers.
Littering along the trail may lead to disqualification.
The race organizer can instruct the mushers to wear promotional materials on clothes or sleds.
A participant choosing to scratch from the race shall as soon as possible notify the race management and is him/herself responsible for transportation of him/herself, their dogs, equipment and depot bags from the checkpoints.
Rescue searches will normally be initiated 24 hours after the last point of contact. Unnecessary stops between the check points should therefore be avoided.
A dog that lies in the sled when the musher arrives at a checkpoint is not out of the race unless the musher so desires.
It is allowed to use ski sticks, as long as no other team is closer than 50 meters. The general rule is that the dogs in the other team should not be disturbed by the ski sticks.
Protests shall be submitted to the race marshal/jury in writing no later than 1 hour after reaching the finishing line. The protest submission fee is 50 SEK.
Veterinary information and anti-doping rules
Participants are obliged to understand and adhere to the vet information the organiser has distributed. As the musher YOU have by entering Tobacco Trail committed yourself to follow the present anti-doping regulations concerning both driver (RF´s doping regulations) as well as dogs (National doping regulations for dogs, concerning waiting period, dispensation possibilities for forbidden substances and methods).