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Renowned cyclist leads charity bike ride

Patients, clinicians and riders come together to support cancer research

George Hincapie bicyclist
Cyclist George Hincapie, a three-time U.S. National Road Race champion, will lead the Jerry Zucker Ride for Hope. Photo provided
Dawn Brazell | | Sept. 28, 2018

Cyclist George Hincapie knows what it takes to win a race. It’s the same grit and determination that patients need as they face a cancer diagnosis.

That’s why he’s coming to Hollings Cancer Center at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) Nov. 11 to lead the Jerry Zucker Ride for Hope, an event that raised $100,000 last year for cancer research at what is the state’s only NCI-Designated Cancer Center. The fundraiser, which will be held at MUSC’s Wellness Center, features a pre-party Nov. 10, and four indoor rides Nov. 11, that will be followed by a stretching class and Lowcountry brunch.

Hincapie said he’s excited to support Hollings Cancer Center.

“It supports a cause that is important to all of us. Everyone has been affected by cancer in some way, whether they’ve fought the disease themselves, supported a family member or friend in treatment or lost a loved one to the disease. I’m extremely thankful for organizations like the Hollings Cancer Center that continually work to find better treatment and preventative measures for cancer.”

Hincapie started racing as a young boy. He proved early on his passion and talent for the sport. He went on to win 10 junior national titles and two world medals prior to joining the professional ranks. The next two decades brought victories in a record 17 Ronde van Vlaanderen races and a second-place finish at the Paris-Roubaix, the best placement of any American. He also competed 17 times in the Tour de France and won three U.S. National Road Race championships.

The event is the first peer-to-peer fundraising event at MUSC, said Debbie Bordeau, director of development for the Hollings Cancer Center. Organizers expect each rider to raise a minimum of $500.

“That means we are engaging our community to join our team of fundraisers and become part of the solution. By participating in the JZ Ride for Hope, our riders are asking their friends, families and colleagues to support their campaign to raise money for cancer research at Hollings. Our riders are fundraisers, ambassadors and most importantly, partners, in this event,” she said. “Every dollar raised by our riders goes to fight cancer, free and clear of any indirect costs or expenses.”

Dr. Leone and bicyclists

Dr. Gustavo Leone, director of the Hollings Cancer Center, joins patients in preparation of the Jerry Zucker Ride for Hope. Photo provided

Bordeau said the ride wouldn’t be possible without the generous support and vision of the Zucker family.

“Anita Zucker was dedicated to the Hollings Cancer Center long before her husband, Jerry, would be diagnosed with a life changing diagnosis of glioblastoma. As a philanthropist and leader in our state, Anita understood and appreciated the importance of having a first-rate cancer center in South Carolina,” she said.

Zucker was instrumental in creating the HCC Citizens Advisory Council and served as its first chairwoman.

“When cancer hit close to home, she and Jerry had the ability to go anywhere in the world for care. Jerry chose to be treated at MUSC with the talented team at Hollings Cancer Center. The Zucker family’s commitment continues to this day, through their participation and generous support of the JZ Ride for Hope as well as other HCC cancer research initiatives.”

Janis Newton, director of MUSC’s Wellness Center, said they are proud to host the event. The Wellness Center also has enjoyed collaborating with Hollings on the development and implementation of the Survivor’s Fit Club

“Physical activity and healthy nutrition are important parts of a cancer-survivor lifestyle, so the Wellness Center is available to offer any well-being program that would help Hollings Cancer patients and survivors.”  

Newton said the research the Ride for Hope supports includes cutting edge clinical trials and new cancer therapies, that directly affect one of the top causes of death in the community and nation. “This ride truly gives hope to cancer patients and survivors. Almost everyone has been touched by someone they love having to manage the disease process of cancer.  There also are many cancer survivors who would like to give back to the community and to the researchers and health teams who helped them at MUSC,” she said.

“This is a fun and inspiring event that everyone can be proud of being a part of.”

For more information, visit


Zucker family gives $5M to help build new children's hospital (MUSC News, Oct. 12, 2017)

Cyclist takes strong stance to raise awareness, funding for addiction recovery (MUSC News, June 10, 2014)


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