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30th Annual Becel Heart&Stroke Ride

June 4, 2017 @ 6:30 am - 12:00 pm

Heart & Stroke News Release

Join 20,000 participants on DVP and Gardiner for 30th Annual Becel Heart&Stroke Ride for Heart



Contact: Diane Hargrave
416 467-9954, ext. 102




April 26, 2017 – TORONTO – Join the Heart and Stroke Foundation on Sunday, June 4, for the 30th Annual Becel Heart&Stroke Ride to help support critical life-saving research.  www.rideforheart.ca
Canada’s largest single-day charity cycling event now for the second year also offers participants the amazing experience to join by running or walking. In this landmark event,

15,000 cyclists and 5,000 runners and walkers will be able to enjoy a traffic-free Gardiner Expressway and Don Valley Parkway with the iconic CN Tower in the background.
The Becel Heart&Stroke Ride for Heart is the perfect opportunity to raise funds that improve the health of all Canadians. These funds will help the Foundation achieve its important mission to prevent heart disease and stroke, save lives, and promote recovery for survivors.
When you participate in the Ride for Heart, the funds raised will support 850 researchers in medical institutes, universities, hospitals and communities across Canada, working on breakthrough treatments that save lives and improve survivor recovery.


To date, the Ride has raised $58.5 million. This year we have set our eyes on the fundraising goal of $6.5 million.


Not only will you be raising funds to improve the heart-health of all Canadians, you will also be contributing to your own. Lack of physical activity is the most prevalent risk factor for heart disease and stroke, and Heart & Stroke encourages cycling, running and walking as accessible, heart-healthy activities for the whole family. The recommended amount of weekly physical activity for adults is 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous aerobic activity per week, accumulated in bouts of 10 minutes or more. For children, it’s 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous daily physical activity.

Healthy Lives, Free of Heart Disease and Stroke. Together We Will Make It Happen
Since 1952, the Heart and Stroke Foundation has worked to reduce the toll of heart disease and stroke and to improve the health of all Canadians. Over this period, the cardiovascular death rate in Canada has declined by more than 75 per cent. In fact, almost 95 per cent of heart attack patients who make it to hospital now survive.


Over the past 60 years, the Foundation—thanks to the support of its countless donors and volunteers– has invested more than $1.45 billion in vital heart and stroke research, making it the largest contributor in Canada after the federal government.
Despite this progress, the Foundation’s work is more urgent than ever, because heart disease and stroke still take one life every seven minutes in Canada.


The Facts

  • More than 1.6 million Canadians are living with the effects of heart disease and stroke.
  • 9 in 10 Canadians have at least one risk factor for heart disease and stroke.
  • Each year in Canada, there are up to 70,000 heart attacks, 62,000 strokes and 40,000 cardiac arrests.
  • 60% of adult Canadians and 1 in 3 children are overweight or obese.
  • It is estimated that heart failure results in direct costs of more than $2.8 billion per year in Canada.

How the Heart and Stroke Foundation Creates More Survivors

  • Heart & Stroke’s investment of close to $31.5 million in research in Canada last year will continue to drive discoveries that will eliminate heart disease and stroke
  • In 2015, we co-funded research on a breakthrough procedure that cuts stroke deaths by 50% and significantly reduces disability in survivors by quickly pulling the clots out of the brain
  • We enabled the first-ever in-utero surgery to correct congenital heart defects
  • In 2014, we invested almost $55 million in advocacy and health promotion programs
  • Since 2014, our resuscitation programs have allowed us to place more than 20,000 automated external defibrillators (AEDs) in public spaces such as hockey arenas and recreation centres across Canada (approximately 8000 of those AEDs in Ontario to date) to increase someone’s chance of surviving cardiac arrest. In 2015 alone, HSF trained more than 515,700 Canadians in CPR and/or First Aid. These efforts have resulted in more than 120 lives saved across the country
  • Our free online tools, including the My Heart&Stroke Risk Assessment, the <30 Days Challenge App, the Healthy Weight Action Plan and the Blood Pressure Action Plan, are helping tens of thousands of Canadians lower their risk
  • Our strong presence in communities across Canada through initiatives such as the Living with Stroke program and healthy living programs delivered to school children are reaching Canadians of all ages

Survivor story

Twenty-one years ago Michael’s daughter Erin suffered a stroke in utero. Although she endured countless challenges, she faced each new obstacle head-on. With perseverance and drive she took up gymnastics, snowboarding, dance and basketball.


When Erin turned 13, she told her parents she wanted to volunteer for Heart & Stroke. She understood that she had benefitted from Heart & Stroke research, and was committed to giving back. She became a child survivor ambassador and Heart & Stroke became part of their family life.


Michael never thought he would also become a survivor. In 2014, he underwent aortic valve replacement surgery at Toronto General Hospital.  Recovery was difficult, but he already had a great survivor in the family to look up to. Five months after open heart surgery, he participated in the Ride for Heart. Crossing the finish line in the pouring rain was an emotional experience.


This year, Michael and Erin are training to participate together in the Ride on a tandem bike. Without the research that Heart & Stroke has funded, Erin and Michael may not have lived to do this Ride together.


Together they have a goal to raise $100,000.
Event Details
To ensure a safe experience, those who are cycling on the 75km route need to start between 6:00 a.m. – 6:30 a.m. All other riders who are participating in the 25km or 50km routes can start any time after 6:30 a.m. with a latest start time of 9 a.m.
For those participating in the Run/Walk, you can choose from the following routes along the Gardiner Expressway: 5km Walk, 5km Run or 10km Run.
10km runners will start their route at 10:00 a.m., 5km runners will start at 10:20 a.m. and and Walkers will begin their route at 10:30 am.  Riders and runners/walkers will never intersect on the route at any time.
Register Now
To register for the 30th Annual Becel Heart&Stroke Ride for Heart, to support a participant, or for more information visit www.rideforheart.ca.
The Ride sold out early last year – Register today!



About Heart & Stroke

‘Life. We don’t want you to miss it.’ That’s why Heart & Stroke works to prevent disease, save lives and promote recovery. We must generate the next medical breakthroughs, so Canadians don’t miss out on precious moments.

Over the last 60 years, we have invested more than $1.45 billion in heart and stroke research, making us the largest contributor in Canada after the federal government. In that time, the death rate from heart disease and stroke has declined by more than 75 per cent.



About Becel®

Becel®, the leading margarine brand in Canada, was launched in 1978 as the first non-hydrogenated margarine on the market. For over three decades, the Becel® brand has dedicated itself to educating Canadians about the importance of caring for their hearts and has created a range of products that can be incorporated as part of a heart healthy lifestyle. Through new product development, consumer education and its 24-year title sponsorship of the Becel Heart & Stroke Ride for Heart event, Becel® maintains its commitment to research in cardiovascular health and nutrition innovation and education.  Today, the brand continues to find ways to make margarine even better. Becel® continually expands its line-up with innovative new products based on the science of heart health, including Becel® pro.activ®, a calorie-reduced margarine that marked the first food with added plant sterols in Canada. For more information, visit becel.ca.


June 4, 2017
6:30 am - 12:00 pm
Event Category: