March 17-19, 2000
The purse for this year's Open North American Championship Sled Dog Race has just doubled to $40,000!!!
Thank you ...Alaska Fiber Star, Alaska Communications Systems, PTI Communications, ATU Long Distance, MACtel, and PTInet
Alaska Dog Mushers' Association PRESS RELEASE 13 March 2000
2000 North American Championships Fairbanks, Alaska USA
The purse for this year's Open North American Championship Sled Dog Race has just doubled! According to Alaska Dog Mushers' Association President Lloyd Lowry, "Thanks to the sponsorship support of Alaska Fiber Star and Alaska Communications Systems and it's member companies PTI Communications, ATU Long Distance, MACtel, and PTInet, the purse on this year's Open North American will be $40,000." Each sponsor will contribute $10,000 to the purse. This is an increase of $20,000 over the original $20,000 guaranteed by ADMA through pull tab sales and other fund-raising events. Prize money will be distributed among the top 15 finishers.
This will be the third year Alaska Fiber Star has returned as a major Open North American sponsor. Announcing their contribution, Alaska Fiber Star's Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Jim Miner, said; "We are proud to continue our sponsorship of the Open North American and our support of the Alaska Dog Mushers' Association. Your organization has earned our admiration and we intend to continue our support for the ONAC and the community of Fairbanks."
This is the first year of sponsorship by Alaska Communications Systems. When another major sponsor decided not to support this year's event, ACS stepped up to the plate. Long-time Alaska resident and ACS Public Affairs Director Tom Jensen informed Lowry, "We are involved because you have earned our admiration and respect as a premier activity administered by a highly professional and well established organization. We are pleased to participate and hope that this is received as a sign of ACS/PTI's continued support and commitment to the Fairbanks community."
Twenty or more of the top open-class dog teams in the United States, Canada, and Europe will compete in the 2000 Open North American Sleddog Championship next weekend, March 17th-19th, in Fairbanks. This will be the 55th running of the Open North American, which has been run continuously since 1946. The race will start and finish on the streets of downtown Fairbanks, then run along the Chena River and Noyes Slough, and onto a permanent trail system established and maintained by the Alaska Dog Mushers' Association. Several thousand spectators will line the streets, river, and trail to watch the action.
Competitors are expected to include teams from Alaska, the Lower 48 states, Canada, Japan, Germany, and Sweden. Average team size will be 16-20 dogs (largest about 22) with over 300 canine athletes participating in the 3-day event. Dogs and drivers will race 20 miles on each of the first two days, and 27 miles during the final, most challenging heat. Fairbanks trail conditions are excellent.
The sign-ups, drawing and calcutta auction for this year's Open North American will be held Wednesday evening starting at 7 p.m. at the Westmark Hotel on Noble Street in downtown Fairbanks.
For more information contact: Lynn Orbison at 488-9685 or Kathy Frost at 455-6885.
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