Enbridge Ride to Conquer Cancer
Close to 2,000 cyclists are peddling their way along the Rocky Mountains this weekend to raise money to fight cancer. It's the second year for the Enbridge Ride to Conquer Cancer, and it's even bigger than last year.
Many teams are involved in the ride including one representing CTV Calgary. He's usually on the other side of the camera, but today, CTV photographer Todd McDermott is in the spotlight. For the second year, McDermott is taking part in the Enbridge Ride to Conquer Cancer, and he has a personal reason for being here.
"I'm doing this because I'm a cancer survivor and I went through the system and I realized it takes a lot of work, energy, and money to help people that have this disease," said McDermott.
McDermott's throat cancer was diagnosed in 2007. He is now cancer-free. This year, some co-workers have joined him as teammates. Kate Howden, Lisa Tierney, and Mira Sandrik will pedal alongside McDermott nearly 200 kilometres over two days along the Rocky Mountains.
"I'm mentally prepared, definitely. I've been training. I did hurt my back about a month ago, so it's hurting a little bit, but you know this is nothing in comparison to what cancer, the pain that they have to go through, so I'm just going to think of all of them and just try and finish it," said Sandrik.
"Team Todd raised just under $12,000 dollars, so the four of us are about to embark on this ride. Of course we're supporting Todd who has beaten cancer, and my two dads who have died from cancer, my uncle is fighting it, and everybody else, we're just amazed to be a part of this," added Tierney.
"I know that it's going to be a big challenge, and every kilometre is going to seem longer and longer and you just got to keep your head down and just keep on going," said McDermott.
Team Todd is one of several hundred groups of cyclists. Organizers say in all, nearly 2,000 riders are involved in the event.
"Every single rider has contributed to the advances that we're going to make as a result of the research that these dollars are going to be funding right here in Calgary at the Tom Baker Cancer Centre and in Edmonton at the Cross Cancer Institute," commented Linda Mickelson, CEO of the Alberta Cancer Foundation.
The cyclists will be exhausted by Sunday night, but it will all be worthwhile: a total of $7.3-million has been raised to fight cancer in Alberta.
Last year's ride raised $6.9-million for the Alberta Cancer Foundation.