Wasilla, Alaska – Four-time Iditarod champion Martin Buser has been recognized by his peers for two very special awards: the Donlin Gold Sportsmanship award and $3,000, and the Iditarod’s Most Inspirational Musher Award, which includes a paid entry fee for the 2021 Iditarod. Both awards are also accompanied by etched, clear glass trophies.
Donlin Gold’s external affairs manager, Kristina Woolston, congratulated Buser on receiving the 2020 sportsmanship award and thanked him for his enduring legacy and leadership. “Martin Buser is an inspiration on and off the trail, a positive role model and influence for all Alaska,” said Woolston. “Donlin Gold’s top priority is safety, and we thank him for his role in the safe arrival of the Elim 11 at the 2020 Iditarod finish line.”
The Iditarod’s CEO, Rob Urbach, commented on the amazing record that Buser currently holds. “Martin and the generations of sled dogs he has raised have completed 35 consecutive Iditarods – 37 total,” said Urbach. “That is a record that, quite frankly, is incomparable in the world of sports. Top that with the cohort of apprentices he’s trained to work with the dogs at Happy Trails Kennels over these many years, he is, by all accounts, most inspirational.”
Buser, who completed the 2020 Iditarod with all 14 members of his puppy team in harness at the finish was humbled by the recognition from his peers. Buser said, “In past Iditarods, I have been honored to receive each of these awards, but never both in the same. It was an honor to have had the opportunity to travel in the back of the pack with the members of the Elim 11. I hope, in some small way, I played a role in helping them complete their journey.”
The Donlin Gold Sportsmanship Award and the Iditarod Most Inspirational Musher awards will be presented to Martin Buser at a later date. For more information on this and other Iditarod trail awards, visit Iditarod.com.