Cyclists participate in 9th annual Dolphins Cancer Challenge

MIAMI GARDENS, FLA. (WSVN) - Thousands of cyclists raced against cancer in Miami-Dade County during the 9th annual Dolphins Cancer Challenge.

The cycling charity, hosted by the Miami Dolphins, featured several different bike routes, with all cyclists crossing the finish line at the Hard Rock Stadium, Saturday.

“It’s a great day to fight cancer. It’s a great day to raise money. That’s the big why we’re here,” said one participant.

For many involved, including Dolphins players themselves, the cause is personal.

“My grandfather actually passed away in 2012 from throat cancer,” said Dolphins linebacker Raekwon McMillan, “so I was able to ride in his name and bring light to the whole situation.”

From players to leaders of the Dolphins organization, the event was a team effort.

“It’s pretty special what we do here as an organization with all of our events, honestly, and this is another big one for us, so it’s great to see the amount of people that come out and the support that we have,” said Dolphins wide receiver Kenny Stills.

All funds raised by the event will go toward research at the University of Miami Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center.

“This is the most important day of the year for us because this is the day that we actually gather funds, raise funds, so we can do that fundamental cancer research,” said Dr. Gilberto Lopes.

The research will eventually lead to critical progress in the fight against cancer.

Events like the Dolphins Cancer Challenge directly impact the search for a cure that could come sooner than some may think.

“We are seeing so many new developments over the last few years that we are sure that there are going to be many cancers that we are going to be able to cure or make into chronic diseases in the next five to 10 years,” said Lopes.

The progress is encouraged by many survivors who attended who are living proof of what critical cancer treatment can do.

“It’s really about the community coming together for a really great cause,” said one participant.

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