LOWER MAINLAND, BC, June 20, 2012 /CNW/ - For eight years, about a
hundred ordinary people have set aside their hobbies and sacrificed
their weekends to spend half a year training for one of the toughest
one-day amateur cycling events in North America—Ride2Survive. They do
it to raise money for the Canadian Cancer Society. So far this year the
crew and riders have raised $345,000. Since its inception the ride has
raised 1.9 million dollars for cancer research.
Training began in February with bike rides 80 kilometres long. Two weeks
ago, the training rides hit the 200-kilometre mark. This Saturday, June
23rd, another group of ordinary people will get on their bikes at
Mainstreet Community Church in Kelowna at 3:30 am and arrive 19 hours
later at South Shore Cycle in North Delta. With hours of training and
fundraising behind them, they will "ride to survive."
Now in its eighth year, Ride2Survive is designed to be a metaphor for
battling cancer. Unlike other ultra-endurance cycling events such as
the Rocky Mountain 1200 or the new Tour de British Columbia—and unlike
the shorter cancer rides and GranFondos—Ride2Survive is a true team
In Ride2Survive the riders start and finish together and are fully
supported along the 19-hour ride. Food, water, conveniences, and
medical support are provided at the end of each of the 13 stages.
Drafting is encouraged and helping hands and SAG wagons are always
available. Just like fighting cancer, say the organizers, you can't do
400 kilometres and 13,000 feet of climbing alone.
Organizer Kerry Kunzli said, "A lot of people are drawn to the ride
because of the physical challenge. But then they spend some time beside
a rider who just got off chemo or somebody who has pictures of children
lost to cancer on the top tube of their bike. Somewhere between that
and riding into the finish in Delta, they change."
The 400-kilometer route is a hilly grind that would test the endurance
of professional cyclists. The stages are long and lonely and the stops
are short. Veterans of the ride say that it is hard to get back on the
bike and keep going. To help keep their spirits up, the organizers are
hoping that people will come out and cheer them on along the way and
that the donations will keep flowing in during those nineteen hours on
the road, particularly during the final "yellow mile."
Some of the best places to come out and see the ride on Saturday
include: Johnson Bentley Memorial Aquatic Centre in Kelowna at 3:30 am,
the BC Visitor Centre in Merritt at 9:45 am, Britton Creek Rest Area at
1:00 pm, Hope Memorial Park at 3:00 pm, the Mission Information Centre
at 7:00 pm, Planet Ice in Maple Ridge at 8:00 pm, and the yellow mile
in North Delta that ends at South Shore Cycle on Scott Road at 10:00
The yellow mile will take place along Scott Road between 72nd Avenue and
80th Avenue at approximately 9:30 pm. Spectators are asked to wear
bright yellow and make lots of noise as the exhausted group nears the
To follow the group's progress by GPS tracking on ride day, read their
stories from the road or make a donation, please go to www.ride2survive.ca.
Image with caption: "Photo credit: Jacek Kaim (CNW Group/Canadian Cancer Society (BC and Yukon Division))". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20120620_C2715_PHOTO_EN_15366.jpg
SOURCE Canadian Cancer Society (BC and Yukon Division)
For further information:
Gina Ungaro, Media Liaison
Canadian Cancer Society, BC and Yukon
M: 604 313-8097
O: 604 675-7335