Riding over 200kms in two days, through some of Queensland’s most beautiful scenery is an accomplishment in itself but even more so when you are raising money for a great cause, beating cancer. Half of all men and one third of all women will be diagnosed with some form of cancer before the age of 85 and nearly every Australian life will be effected by cancer in some way. We all know of someone, family and loved ones, work colleagues and mates, who have been struck by a life changing cancer diagnoses. In 2012, about 3 in 10 deaths in Australia were to cancer, making it the second most common cause of death after cardiovascular diseases. The Ride to Conquer Cancer aims to change this.
Ride to Conquer Cancer (www.conquercancer.org.au) was first started in Canada in 2008 and quickly went international with the first Australian Ride to Conquer, sponsored by Rio Tinto, being held in Brisbane in 2011. Recognised now as one of the largest fundraising initiatives in Australia, this year there are rides in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth. While some training is certainly advised, you don’t have to be a pro-athlete or cycling enthusiast to take part, you just need the desire to do something that changes lives.
EnerMech’s “Ballsy Boys” Team, captained by the mighty Andrew Treble and comprising John Hitchens, Matt McDonnell, father and son team Ryan and Mike Dunstan, John Cox and Mick Grose dug deep to complete the gruelling 2 day mission and raise over $20K to help conquer cancer. While they certainly had a few aches and pains, and had to deal with some rough weather on the first day, don’t feel too sorry for the boys who were supported by regular pit stops, hydration, catered meals and even massages at the end of day at base camp!
Captain’s Log from Andrew Treble:
“Cancer is such a tough thing to go through for all involved. We just wanted to help in some small way.
The cycle itself started off in the rain and it was a pretty miserable first night. We pitched our tents and took them down in sideways rain.
It cleared up as we got under way on the second day of cycling. It was great when the sun did come out as it gave us great encouragement to see the flocks of supporters clapping and cheering us on throughout the day. It was like something out of the Tour de France!
It was a great team building experience and we got to see some beautiful countryside. We really enjoyed the beers and BBQ afterwards, which we felt we deserved after sharing wet tents with our team mates the night before.
We’d all like thank to the spectators and all the volunteers who made for such a great ride. I’ll never forget the cheering coming from the sidelines with the EnerMech guys leading the peloton.”
Where do the funds go?
Over the past four years, The Ride to Conquer Cancer raised over $17.9 million for QIMR Berghofer and $49.6 million for cancer research, treatment and care programs right across the nation. This year 1,124 Queensland riders helped raise over $3.8 million for the QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute (http://www.qimrberghofer.edu.a...).
QIMR Berghofer is a world leader in cancer research with a focus on turning new discoveries into treatments, diagnostics and prevention strategies. They have over 700 scientists and support staff working across 50 separate laboratories to create the cancer treatments of the future. QIMR also works to inspire the scientists of tomorrow, every year opening their doors to over 2000 students from primary school level, to post-graduate Masters and PhD candidates.
Since 2011, the Ride to Conquer Cancer has supported over 66 new research projects at QIMR. The flagship of these is the $2.7M project to strengthen QIMR’s ground breaking work to harness the power of the immune system to fight cancer.
EnerMech commends the Ballsy Boys for the commitment, organisation and fundraising efforts that achieved such fantastic results for this worthy cause. We’d also like to thank all our staff and their families who were involved and gave generously. A real team effort!