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Cancer Challenge 2016

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Today marked day one of the 2-day Cancer Cycling Challenge hosted by the Belize Cancer Society. Just before 7:00am today, participating riders and support staff left Dangriga Town at the Drums of Our Fathers Monument in route to San Ignacio Town. Heather Reneau, Administrator for the Belize Cancer Society, told us about the event before today’s start. “This cancer challenge ride is actually the brain-child of the Benny’s Megabytes Cycling Club. We met the Cycling Federation of Belize and the guys from Benny’s Megabytes and they decided we need to raise awareness for prostate cancer. The purpose is raising funds and raising awareness and showing men that they can come out; they can live healthy lifestyles. They can adapt healthy eating, and they can beat prostate cancer. If you don’t know anything about prostate cancer, you can come out get fliers and pamphlets and learn something about prostate cancer. So we invited everyone to join us. If you see us on the road get a bike, join with us for a mile or two and you’ll be sure that you have done your part to raise awareness for prostate cancer”.

The route for the second day runs from Benque Viejo Town in the Cayo District to Belize City where the organizers plan a big finish. Reneau also talked about what the participants and public can expect from the 2-day event. “At the end of each ride you will be able to meet the riders. There will be pamphlets and fliers. You can get information on prostate and testicular cancer. If you’re going through therapy you can get info from us and learn how to eat properly and so on. The last day will end at The Hour Bar and Grill in Belize City. That will be our big extravagant event. We have KIA Motors supporting us. They will be having a car show that day. We have Blue Steel Sounds. We have motivational talks by cancer survivors, so we have invited everyone to come out tomorrow at 12noon at the Hour Bar”.

The 2-day event was presented as the most challenging social ride in Belize. For the casual rider and those wishing to come out and pedal a few miles in support of the cause were definitely in for tough time if they wish to do the entire route. The first day alone is approximately 80 miles with a total elevation gained over 3,800 feet. Day 2 leaves from the rollers of the Cayo District to end Belize City. Perry Gibson of Benny’s Megabytes Cycling Club acknowledged his part, in concert with Stanley Longsworth and former Female standout Camille Solis, in the selection of the routes. Gibson explained that the difficulty of the route is symbolic of the difficulties of those stricken by cancer and particularly prostate cancer for which they are riding today and tomorrow.

Riding off from Dangriga Town got others involved as well. Nurse Carolyn Obi of the Belize Cancer Center in Dangriga said they were happy to assist with the logistics in Dangriga. Last year, the Cancer Center was a beneficiary from a similar event, albeit 1 day, hosted by Belize Natural Energy. The ride also coincided with the annual cancer walk hosted by the local members of the Belize Cancer Society. That awareness walk left from Esso Xaible Service Station at mile 6.5 on the Hummingbird Highway and ended at the Drums of Our Fathers Monument, where the ride started from.

So, if you missed the walk and the ride today, you can still make it out tomorrow for day 2, or join them in Belize City in support of a worthy cause.

About Isaac Rhys

Isaac Rhys is the Managing Editor at cyclebiz.com. Based in the Belize, he started Cyclebiz in 2015 intent on attracting more attention to local bike races and its participants.

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