Saturday, June 12, 2010
The 2010 Susan G. Komen St. Louis Race for the Cure, held earlier today in St. Louis, Missouri, became the world’s largest Race for the Cure, with over 71,000 participants.
2010 marks the twelfth year for the race in St. Louis, which raises money for breast cancer research nationwide. Originally brought to the city in 1999, it has raised over US$19 million. It was sponsored by Wells Fargo Advisors, a locally-headquartered brokerage firm of the financial services provider Wells Fargo. Nationally, the Race for the Cure is hosted by Susan G. Komen for the Cure, a non-profit organization supporting breast cancer research.
In 1999, there were only about 10,000 participants in the St. Louis Race for the Cure. In recent years, the number has grown to over 60,000, and today’s 5K race saw over 71,000 runners, walkers, and wheelchair racers. Despite the heat and humidity, 1,090 teams signed up, and over 4,500 breast cancer survivors participated. Overall, the race raised more than US$3.3 million. A phone bank set up by Wells Fargo and local television station KSDK contributed over US$28,000 of that amount in four hours.
Prior to the race, there was a parade of all the breast cancer survivors who had signed up for the race. The actual competition began at 8:30 a.m. CDT (1330 UTC) with the wheelchair race. Following them were the timed runners, the untimed runners, the walkers, and lastly, the “fun walk” participants, who had only opted to walk one mile (1.6 kilometres).
The Komen St. Louis Race for the Cure is only one of many Races for the Cure, which is the largest group of 5K runs and walks in the world. The first Komen race was held in 1983 in Dallas, Texas, but has since spread to over 140 cities throughout the world. Proceeds from today’s St. Louis race will benefit both local institutions and the rest of the United States. At least 25 percent of the money raised will go toward funding national research on breast cancer, while the rest will be given to organizations in St. Louis for breast cancer awareness programs.