J.J. Keller to sponsor Iditarod racing team

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In March, three generations of Seaveys will be racing Alaska’s Iditarod together: 74-year-old Dan, 52-year-old Mitch and 24-year-old Dallas, all hoping for victory. James and Rosanne Keller, representing J.J. Keller & Associates Inc., have announced their sponsorship of the Seavey/J.J. Keller Iditarod Racing Team for the sixth consecutive year. They will be the exclusive sponsor for Dallas Seavey.

To date, 70 mushers have signed up for the 2012 Iditarod, which will begin in Anchorage on March 3 and end 9 to 13 days later in Nome. With three Seaveys on the trail, competition is sure to heat up. Mitch and Dallas have raced closely before, with Dallas placing 8th and Mitch placing 10th in the 2010 Iditarod. Only time will tell if youth or experience will prevail in 2012.

The 2012 race will be Dallas’ sixth run to the famed Burled Arch. In that time, he has racked up a number of Iditarod records:
• 2005 – Youngest musher to compete in the race – age 18;
• 2009 – Youngest musher to finish the race in a top 10 position – 6th place, age 22;
• 2010 – Youngest musher to win the GCI Dorothy Page Halfway Award – age 23;
• 2010 – Seavey family record finish – 9 days, 10 hours and 4 minutes; and
• 2011 – Youngest musher to finish the race in a top 5 position – 4th place, age 24.

James J. Keller, president and chief executive officer of J.J. Keller, has been following the team’s training and is in frequent contact with Dallas. “Dallas has a very strong veteran team and is training for a championship in 2012,” Keller says. James and Rosanne Keller will be in Nome to welcome the mushers across the finish line.

The 2012 race is the 19th Iditarod for Dallas’ father, Mitch Seavey. Mitch has nine top 10 finishes and won the 2004 Iditarod. He was withdrawn last year due to an injury while on the trail.

Dan Seavey provides a strong foundation for Seavey mushing. He helped found the Iditarod in 1973 and finished third in that race, and fourth a year later. According to his race bio, he is racing the 2012 Iditarod to emphasize the Iditarod National Historic Trail Centennial (January 2008 to October 2012), which commemorates events of historical significance to Alaska, from sled dog travels to gold mining to the designation of Alaska as a territory in 1912. The year 2008 marked the 100th anniversary of the Alaska Road Commission efforts to open an overland route from Seward to Nome.

The Iditarod Historic Trail Alliance’s “Centennial Team” will participate in the Iditarod Dog Sled Race ceremonial start in Anchorage. Dan Seavey will be the first out of the starting gate with a historic freight sled to commemorate the thousands of gold seekers who mushed to the Iditarod gold fields a hundred years ago. His 15-year-old grandson, Conway Seavey, will ride with him during the ceremonial start.