Racers hold steady at the starting gate at the Penticton BMX Club open house for their new course in 2018.(Western News File Photo)

Penticton BMX Races for Life for the B.C. Children’s Hospital

The annual event is held at races across Canada with the money going to leukemia research

The Penticton BMX Club is hosting a special double-point Race for Life on Friday, with proceeds going to support leukemia research and treatment.

Last year, over $60,000 were raised across Canada, with the Penticton BMX Club raising over $2,000 for B.C. Children’s Hospital.

“The $20 in race fees is donated to the Race for Life, there’s no pre-registration, so you can just come down and sign up on race day,” said Kirsten McLean, the organizer for this year’s race in Penticton. “And after there’s a barbecue, and the money from that goes to the charity too. Each of the riders fundraise through the year, the parents and the kids, and those all go towards the Race for Life as well.”

The Race for Life in Penticton starts at 5;30 p.m., with the barbecue kicking off after the races are finished for the day. The Race for Life was founded in 1981 in honour of Todd Kingsbury, a young BMX rider who passed away from leukemia at the age of 12.

The American Bicycle Association, USA BMX Foundation, and BMX clubs across North America now hold Races for Life each year in Kingsbury’s name.

The Penticton club was in the middle of a transition to their new course last year, and this year hopes are high for a great turnout.

“This year we were able to earn our double-point race, so we’re hoping to do a lot more fundraising this year,“ said McLean. “There’s a Race for Life on Saturday in Kelowna in the morning, and then another in Vernon too, the three tracks have gotten together in the hopes that with the double-point racing we can do a lot of fundraising too.”

The evening is open to everyone, not just BMX riders. If you want to donate, but can’t race, there will be options available at the course for you, or you can make a donation online.

For more information about the Penticton BMX Club’s Race for Life, you can check out their facebook page at Penticton BMX. You can also learn more about the Race for Life and what the money goes to support by going to the BC Children’s Hospital website.

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.


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