Over $500,000 raised at Big Move Cancer Ride
Published: Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, September 12, 2012 12:09
The Fourth Annual Big Move Cancer Ride that took place on Sept. 9 at Club Roma in St. Catharines was a huge success with over $500,000 raised for the Walker Family Cancer Centre. This is an increase from previous years.
In 2009, there were 235 riders and $278,800 raised; 2010, there were 439 riders and $425,000 raised and in 2011 there were 511 riders and $478,000 raised.
Sandra Sabo, Chief Operating Officer at the St. Catharines General Hospital Foundation, said that the success was due to the 706 participants that came out to support the cause.
“Not only were there cyclists, but four rollerbladers and two hand cyclists that came out,” said Sabo.
The Big Move Cancer Ride is a non-competitive cycling event featuring a 50 km, 100 km and a 100 mile ride, as well as an on-site three hour spinning session, which was new this year.
“The event is hosted by Club Roma in St. Catharines, with the start/finish line, hot lunch, live band and recognition ceremony,” said Sabo. “Participants collect pledge money in support of the Walker Family Cancer Centre set to open in March 2013.”
Sabo added that all proceeds raised from the event will fund equipment essential in radiation therapy for the regional Cancer Centre and that it is important that all dollars raised in Niagara, stay in Niagara.
With construction advancing at over 95 per cent complete, the Walker Family Cancer Centre will reach substantial completion on Nov. 26, 2012, and clinical move-in day on March 24, 2013.
“[There is an] increase [of participants] because the facility is near completion – more people in the community understand the importance of supporting the cause here in Niagara,” said Sabo. “In Ontario, every hour of every day, an average of eight people will be diagnosed with some type of cancer, and three people will die from the disease. Niagarans face a higher than average incidence of cancer, with almost 1,200 new diagnosed cases of cancer each year.”
Ron Matsushita, Logistics Chair of the event, outlined the routes of the ride, and the difficulty riders go through in undertaking such a daunting challenge.
“There are three rides of 50 km, 100 km, and for the second year a Century Ride (100 miles) of 160 km,” he said. “The beginning (for the first 28 km) and the end (the last 16 km) of all three rides are the same. This has enabled us to use the same locations for marshals, signage and police support for those sections saving volunteer numbers, money and at the same time reducing confusion.”
Matsushita said that the track was designed so that if riders who attempted the longest route grew tired, they could exit off onto a shorter route.
“The middle portion of the 100 km route overlaps with the 160 km route for the same reasons. The century ride has a 60 km loop that veers off the 100 km route and then returns so that riders who may start off hoping to ride the full 160 km, but find themselves too tired or the conditions too difficult have the option of carrying on with the 100 km route,” he said.
Any of the given tracks are difficult to varying endurances of the participants involved.
“Every route is challenging relative to the experience of the riders,” said Matsushita. “Certainly riding 100 miles within seven hours (8:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. allotted) will tax the endurance of anyone, and over 70 riders have chosen this distance. Many riders of previous Big Move 50 km routes have moved up to challenge themselves by committing to the 100 km distance, and for the 50 km entrants, there are many reasons why this is such a challenging distance.”
Matsushita said that the routes were chosen to provide a glimpse of our beautiful Niagara Region including the Niagara escarpment, the vineyards below the escarpment and the rolling country above. He said that they wanted it to be challenging but rideable road conditions, and to include as many communities of the Region as possible (St. Catharines, Town of Lincoln, Township of West Lincoln, Town of Pelham, and Welland) since the Walker Cancer Clinic will benefit everyone in the region.
For more information and updates on the Walker Family Cancer Centre, visit itsourtimecampaign.ca.