The Enbridge Ride To Conquer Cancer announces $18.1 million raised as 5th Annual Ride commences

Largest cycling fundraiser in Canadian history draws 4,852 participants and helps fund Personalized Cancer Medicine at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre

TORONTO, June 9, 2012 /CNW/ - The Enbridge Ride To Conquer Cancer announced 4,852 participants raised $18.1 million for The Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation as the 5th Annual Ride commenced in both Toronto and Niagara Falls on Saturday morning. Ride participants will cycle over 200km, across six routes between the two cities with an overnight camp at Mohawk College in Hamilton.

"Thank you to every single Rider, Donor, Sponsor, Volunteer, Crew Member, Doctor, Researcher and every person who played a role to make our 5th annual Ride another record-breaking event," said Paul Alofs, President and CEO of The Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation.

"Last year, there were more than 177,000 new cancer cases diagnosed in Canada and 75,000 Canadians passed away from the disease.  As one of the top five cancer research centres in the world, The Princess Margaret is on a mission to conquer cancer in our lifetime, and the $18.1 million raised from this year's Enbridge Ride To Conquer Cancer is already being put to use funding Personalized Cancer Medicine, which is helping to improve and save lives every day," Alofs added.

In its fifth record-breaking year, The Enbridge Ride to Conquer Cancer continues to be the largest cycling fundraiser in Canadian history, having raised over $80.2 million for The Princess Margaret alone, and over $149.3 million for cancer institutes across Canada.  The annual event draws tens of thousands of participants across the nation and brings together communities of survivors, cyclists and supporters who train and fundraise for months in order to participate in the annual Ride. This year's event drew participants from seven countries, eight Canadian provinces and 19 U.S. states.

"I have taken part in the Ontario Ride since its inception in 2008, and I am truly honoured to be part of an event which brings thousands of people together to make drastic impacts in the fight to conquer cancer," says Denise Dorfman from Toronto.

"While I'm riding every year, I am thinking of my sister who fought a brave six-year battle with cancer. I miss her and while I can't bring her back, this event is my chance to honour her and all of those who have been touched by cancer," Dorfman added, who is already registered for the 2013 Ride.

Funds raised by The Ride support The Princess Margaret's creation and implementation of Personalized Cancer Medicine, which detects cancers earlier, diagnoses cancers more precisely, targets treatments more specifically and provides comprehensive physical and emotional support.

"Our personalized treatment and care programs make remarkable impacts on how patients survive and live with cancer," says Dr. Jonathan Irish, Head of Surgical Oncology at The Princess Margaret Hospital.

"Vital funds from The Ride help support our ongoing research programs such as immunotherapy, stem cell or tumour hypoxia programs, our research platforms including our world-leading image-guided technology and robotic surgery, clinical trials that support specific cancer types and our world-class BioBank initiative. Finally, we have over 150 highly skilled clinical scientists and over 1,000 people employed in our research initiatives. Dollars raised by The Ride help us support these teams, enabling breakthrough research to continue," Dr. Irish added.

In 2011, "The Ride To Conquer Cancer" became known as "The Enbridge Ride To Conquer Cancer" when Enbridge became the National Title Sponsor.

"The Ride brings together a community of inspiring men and women who have been touched by this disease and are determined to put every ounce of their energy toward conquering cancer in our lifetimes," says Guy Jarvis, President of Enbridge Gas Distribution and a member of the company's 170-member team.

"Enbridge and its employees are humbled to contribute to the overwhelming efforts of cyclists, volunteers and donors in support of The Princess Margaret this weekend," Jarvis added.

Alofs says sponsorship of all types is absolutely critical to any charitable initiative.

"The contributions from Enbridge and all of our sponsors enable more funds raised by The Ride to be put to use funding cancer-related programs at The Princess Margaret.  We are beyond grateful to all our sponsors for their generous support," Alofs added.

Moments before the start of The Ride, Alofs and event organizers addressed thousands of participants simultaneously in both Toronto and Niagara Falls, and shared the total number of participants and funds raised for this year.  Audio and video from each location was simulcast at both venues.

Ride organizers also released the dates and opened registration for the 2013 event, to be held on June 8th & 9th.

"We hope everyone will join us next year for the 2013 Enbridge Ride to Conquer Cancer," said Alofs.

"For more information and to register, go to www.conquercancer.ca or call 877.699.BIKE," Alofs concluded as thousands of Riders cheered and the 2012 Ride commenced.

Ride organizers expect thousands Ontarians to attend public cheering stations along the route.  For a map of the Ride routes, visit www.conquercancer.ca.

About Princess Margaret Cancer Centre - CLICK HERE
About The Campbell Family Cancer Research Institute at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre - CLICK HERE
About The Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation - CLICK HERE

SOURCE WEWC/RTCC/UA events c/o CauseForce

For further information:

MEDIA CONTACT:
Ailish Steele
Communications Manager
(416) 577-9255
asteele@endcancer.ca 

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WEWC/RTCC/UA events c/o CauseForce

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