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IDITAROD LOSES SPONSORS DUE TO ANIMAL RIGHTS GROUPS
Published March 2, 1995
The Iditarod, Alaska's 1,049-mile dog race, is under attack by a "pack of angry animal-rights groups" -- and that is causing some concern among the race's sponsors. Eight of dogs have died over the past three years. The criticism prompted Timberland to pull out, taking about a third of the race's $1.4M annual budget with it. A spokesperson for Timberland, the event's chief sponsor for the past seven years, said the groups "made a very compelling argument. There was thought as to whether this race shared our brand beliefs." The race's second-largest sponsor, pet-food maker Iams Co., "also got cold feet." Iams will fulfill their $175,000 pledge for this year, but will not be back next year. The race's chief sponsor this year is Alaska's Dodge dealers. Dodge replaced Chrysler after their corporate parent dropped out in '93 under pressure from animal-rights groups (Bill Richards, WALL STREET JOURNAL, 3/2).