The Rio Tinto Ride to Conquer Cancer announced 1236 riders helped raise over $4.2 million for the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute as the 3rd annual Ride commenced on Saturday in Brisbane. Funds raised through Australia’s largest fundraising event series support life-saving cancer research and clinical trials at QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute in Brisbane.
“Our thanks and praise go out to every Rider, their supporters, our incredible sponsors and the hundreds of crew, staff and volunteers who came together and made our third annual Rio Tinto Ride to Conquer Cancer an incredible success for QIMR Berghofer,” said Professor Frank Gannon, Director of QIMR Berghofer.
“Our mission at QIMR Berghofer is to prevent and cure diseases through research. This year in Queensland, over 23,000 people will be diagnosed with a form of cancer and 7,500 people will lose their battle. The vital funds raised over the last three years of The Ride are currently powering dozens ground-breaking research programs investigating the causes of more than 13 cancers including skin, brain, colorectal, breast, ovarian, blood and lymphoma. In addition, funds raised this year support world-class research into personalised cancer immunotherapy treatment and enable the institute to purchase the latest equipment to carry out these ground-breaking programs,” added Professor Gannon.
In three years The Ride has raised over $14.1 million for QIMR Berghofer and $30.6 million for cancer research, treatment and care programs across the Nation to become the largest fundraising event series in Australian history. The annual two-day, 200 km Ride from Brisbane to Lake Wivenhoe and back, draws thousands of participants from across Queensland and brings together communities of survivors, cyclists and supporters who train and fundraise for months in order to participate.
“I was diagnosed with Burkitt’s Lymphoma in June 2012,” said Alan Meulenbroek of Fairfield, a first year rider.
“I probably wouldn’t be here now if it weren’t for research into cancer treatments so I have a lot to be thankful for in terms of medical research. This is the least I can do to go some way to repaying a debt that enabled me to have my life back,” Mr. Meulenbroek added.
In 2011 the Ride to Conquer Cancer became known as the “Rio Tinto Ride to Conquer Cancer” when Rio Tinto became the event title sponsor in Queensland. In three years, nearly 400 Rio Tinto employees, their family and friends have raised almost $1 million for the Ride in Queensland.
“Advancing cancer research, developing new and improved treatments and preventing this diseased is a top priority and an area of significant importance to our staff and their families,” said Rio Tinto’s team captain Martyn Robotham.
“As title sponsor, Rio Tinto is honoured to support QIMR Berghofer, their incredible community of doctors, researchers, and the world-leading cancer programs now underway right here in Brisbane. As the inaugural title sponsor of The Ride in Queensland our employees have been supporting this event for the past three years and we are very proud to today announce that we have signed up for another three,” Mr. Robotham said.
Professor Gannon says event sponsorship is pivotal to the overall success of charitable initiatives.
“Contributions of all kinds from event sponsors enable us to invest more of the funds raised into cancer-related programs at QIMR Berghofer. We are grateful to each of our sponsors for their generous support,” Professor Gannon added.
Moments before the start of The Ride, Professor Gannon and event organizers addressed participants and supporters to share the 2013 fundraising and participant totals and announced 16 & 17 August for the 2014 Brisbane Ride.
“We’ve just opened up registration for our 4th annual Rio Tinto Ride to Conquer Cancer,” said Professor Gannon.
“For more information and to register visit our registration tent at camp and finish, visit conquercancer.org.au or call 1300 11 RIDE (7433),” Professor Gannon concluded as thousands of Riders cheered and the 2013 Ride commenced.