Thirty five residents from Hamilton and Wenham will be among 5,500 cyclists in this year’s 33rd annual Pan-Massachusetts Challenge on Aug. 4 and 5. The Pan-Mass Challenge is a charity bike-a-thon that raises more money than any other athletic fundraising event in the country.
The riders have a collective goal of raising $36 million to support adult and pediatric cancer research and treatment at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute through the Jimmy Fund.
A complete list of local riders can be found below, with the eGiftID number needed to make a gift toward their fundraising goal.
This year’s PMC riders range in age from 13 to 88 and range in skill from seasoned tri-athletes to “weekend warriors” that have having trained specifically for the PMC.
The ride runs through 46 towns across Massachusetts and participating cyclists choose from 11 routes of varying mileage designed to cater to all levels of cycling strength and time availability.
There are six two-day routes that range from 153 to 190 miles and five one-day rides that range from 25 to 110 miles.
Many riders participate in honor of a family member or friend lost to, or being treated for, cancer. More than 300 riders are cancer survivors or current patients.
The average PMC rider trains for three months, solicits 40 sponsors and raises more than $6,000. In 2012, cyclists are required to raise between $500 and $4,300 to ride in the PMC. Since 1980, the PMC has raised $338 million.
Last year, the PMC raised $35 million, accounting for nearly 20 percent of the philanthropic support of Dana-Farber.
In addition to the bikers, there are 3,000 volunteers and thousands of spectators. The riders come from a total of 36 states and eight countries
“The PMC is the gold standard of athletic fundraising events,” says Billy Starr, Pan-Massachusetts Challenge founder and executive director. “PMCers are as committed to raising money for cancer research as they are to pedaling the miles. PMC cyclists are all heart and soul.”