Melanoma Research Foundation Partners with Ironman to Raise Melanoma Awareness among Athletes

Tue, 2012-04-24

Melanoma Research Foundation Partners with Ironman to Raise  Melanoma Awareness among Athletes

Ironman 70.3 Florida event on May 20 kicks off partnership

WASHINGTON, D.C.— It’s the ultimate irony.  Athletes at the top of the physical conditioning can also be setting themselves up for a health crisis they never saw coming.  That’s why the Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF) today announced a new partnership with Ironman® to promote awareness about melanoma prevention and fund new research to help generate the next treatment breakthrough.  

During the Ironman 70.3® Florida event on May 20, athletes on the MRF’s Miles for Melanoma team will swim, bike, and run alongside cancer survivor Lance Armstrong while raising money for melanoma research.  The Ironman 70.3 Florida event kicks off a series of charity events by the MRF and Ironman.

“Sunscreen can feel uncomfortable or be annoying to reapply.  We know that’s one reason why athletes who train outdoors have an increased chance of developing melanoma,” said Timothy J. Turnham, the executive director of the MRF.  “Our alliance with Ironman will help bring home the importance of staying safe in the sun, while contributing critically needed funding for melanoma research.”

The Ironman 70.3 Florida event, taking place at Lake Eva Park in Haines City, Florida, features a freshwater, 1.2-mile swim in Lake Eva, a 56-mile bike ride through Citrus Orchards in Polk County and a 13.1-mile run around the lake and throughout the park.

Athletes are encouraged to join the Miles for Melanoma team and register for the Ironman 70.3® Florida event.  All athletes who raise money for Miles for Melanoma will be eligible for:
•    Prizes based on fundraising levels
•    A welcome kit with training gear
•    Pre-race pasta party the night before the race
•    Breakfast in the Miles for Melanoma tent and access to the team’s area
•    A block of rooms reserved for the MRF at a hotel located near the race

The MRF will offer free skin screenings throughout the year at charity events with Ironman, emphasizing the importance of early detection.

“Athletes have an opportunity to participate in an exciting event with other MRF supporters and keep themselves safe with a skin screening,” Turnham said.

As part of the MRF’s Miles for Melanoma program, Ironman athletes will join a team of athletic event participants dedicated to funding treatment breakthroughs and improving melanoma patients’ quality of life.  

The MRF and Ironman plan to announce additional charity events as they finalize plans. Please check the MRF and Ironman websites for more details.

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Media Contact:     

Berna Diehl                        
Jones Public Affairs                    
(202) 591-4045                    
Berna@jpa.com                     

Jessica Weidensall
Ironman
(813) 868-5914
Media70.3@ironman.com
 

About Melanoma
Melanoma is one of the fastest growing cancers in the United States and can strike men and women of all ages, all races and skin types. With a one in 50 lifetime risk of developing melanoma, nearly 76,000 Americans are expected to be diagnosed with the disease in 2012, resulting in over 9,000 deaths. Melanoma is the most common form of cancer for young adults 25- to 29-years-old and the second most common cancer in adolescents and young adults 15- to 29-years-old.

The majority of melanomas occur on the skin; in fact, melanoma is the most serious type of skin cancer. Melanoma can also occur in the eye (ocular, or uveal melanoma), in mucous membranes (mucosal melanoma), or even beneath fingernails or toenails.

About Melanoma Research Foundation
The Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF) is the largest independent, national organization devoted to melanoma in the United States. Committed to the support of medical research in finding effective treatments and eventually a cure for melanoma, the MRF also educates patients and physicians about prevention, diagnosis and the treatment of melanoma. The MRF is an active advocate for the melanoma community, helping to raise awareness of this disease and the need for a cure. The MRF’s website is the premier source for melanoma information seekers. More information is available at www.melanoma.org.

About Ironman
The iconic Ironman® brand and event series is the largest participation sports platform in the world. Since Ironman’s inception in 1978, its athletes have proven that ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE® by crossing finish lines at the world’s most challenging endurance races. Recognized for excellence through distinguished events, world-class athletes and quality products, World Triathlon Corporation (WTC), owner and operator of the Ironman brand, has grown from a single race to a global sensation with more than 180 events across five unique brands: Ironman, Ironman 70.3®, 5150™ Triathlon Series, Iron Girl®, and IronKids®.  With support from partners, including Timex, PowerBar, K-Swiss, and TYR, more than 200,000 athletes compete each season in the Ironman and Ironman 70.3 series. For more information, visit www.ironman.com