More than 2,600 cyclists left Surrey this morning on a 200-kilometre bike ride to Seattle for the fifth annual Ride to Conquer cancer.
This year, participants raised $10.4 million for the two-day event to support research at the BC Cancer Agency.
Rob Skleryk said this was his third year cycling in the Ride to Conquer.
"We've all had family members and friends inflicted with this disease and we're trying to raise some money to eradicate it," he said.
"It's awesome. We've got great weather this year. The last couple of years have been more of a challenge with the rains, but compared to what people experience and suffer with the disease, what we do is nothing. [It's] a great experience, one of the best things I've ever done."
Largest cycling fundraiser in B.C. history
Since the event began in 2008, more than $50 million has been raised, making it the largest cycling fundraiser in the province's history.
"These funds have dramatically enhanced the world-leading cancer research initiatives taking place at the BC Cancer Agency," said Douglas Nelson, President and CEO of the BC Cancer Foundation.
"The impact is already being felt across the province supporting discoveries that have advanced the understanding of cancer and led to improved cancer care."
Brad Nelson, director of the BC Cancer Agency’s Deeley Research Centre, leads an innovative research initiative funded in part by the cycling event.
Nelson’s lab is developing immune-based therapeutic vaccines to help eliminate cancer cells from the body.
"The use of genomic technologies allows us, for the first time in history, to create personalized vaccines that induce potent immune responses against cancer, leading to better outcomes for our patients," he said.