A record-setting day at the Ride for Dad
Published Saturday, June 2, 2012 4:30PM EDT
Motorcyclists hit the rainy highway in record numbers Saturday to raise money and awareness for the fight against prostate cancer.
Almost 1,000 people rode from Ottawa to Smiths Falls and back for the 13th annual Ride for Dad.
"The motorcycles attract attention; the majority of motorcyclists are men and our target audience is men," said Jim Summers with the ride. "(We want) to get them aware of prostate cancer and get them opening a dialogue with their doctors and their families."
"We're all military, we all lost friends to cancer and we're riding as a group to help raise funds to fight prostate cancer also," said Terry Hunter of his group.
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer among Canadian men, with one in seven getting it in their lifetime.
The Ride for Dad began in Ottawa in 2000 with only 80 motorcycles, but has expanded to 30 cities across Canada.
"Cancer is a word you hear all the time and whether it's associated to prostate or breast cancer it's in our community, it's all over," said rider Brigitte Belisle "It's an important cause no matter what word is before the word ‘cancer.'"
Ottawa's ride raised $375,000, with other events across the country bringing the fundraising total to $9 million since 2000.
"Sometimes you raise money and it just sort of vanishes, but the money from the motorcycle ride for dad goes directly to research, goes directly to increasing survivability rates," said one survivor.
That's one of the reasons the crowd of men and women set a Guinness world record, despite the rain.
"We're trying to set a Guinness world record for the most motorcycles to participate in a poker run," said Summers before the ride. "Currently the record is about 250 so we'll easily blow that out of the water."
Guinness representatives are expected to confirm the record in a few weeks.
With a report from CTV Ottawa's Katie Griffin