by Kevin Wells
12:46 AM AKST, November 18, 2010
In recent years, the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race experienced a funding shortfall that reduced the purse by 43 percent -- but the addition of a new race sponsor Wednesday offers a step towards financial stability.
As a principal sponsor, mining company Donlin Creek LLC will provide $285,000 for The Last Great Race next year. The sponsorship creates the possibility of a larger payout to mushers, while also helping with race logistics and planning. Donlin Creek also plans to continue investing in future years.
“The fundraising part of putting this race together, I jokingly say, is a 14-month-a-year job,” said the Iditarod’s executive director, Stan Hooley. “This is just one of the fruits of those labors, and we're just thrilled to have a new corporate partner at this level.”
Forty-nine mushers are signed up for next year’s race. The entry deadline is Dec. 1.
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