Team Duke Cancer Institute
Michael B. Kastan, MD, PhD, Honorary Team Captain
Duke Cancer Institute executive director Michael B. Kastan, MD, PhD, Duke University Cycling coach Ben Turits, and Ryan Switzer are saddling up to serve as team captains for Team Duke Cancer Institute in the 2018 Victory Ride, hosted by The V Foundation for Cancer Research and sponsored in part by Duke Cancer Institute.
"The V Foundation was built on the dream that cancer can be defeated," said Kastan. "In October 2017, the foundation partnered with Duke, Wake Forest and UNC, to launch the Victory Ride to Cure Cancer, a fundraising bike ride to help make that dream come true. We are pleased to partner with the V Foundation in the quest to fund cancer research."
Turits, who has been racing since he was 13 years old, is the coach of the Duke University Cycling Team. He has raced as a Junior from 1997 to 1999 for the Jamis Mountainbike Team. In 2002 Turits raced in Europe for Eric Gibeaux’s elite amateur team based in Tours, a university town between France's Cher and Loire rivers. Turits graduated from Bucknell University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Environmental Science. He is also a graduate of the Therapeutic Massage program at Wake Tech. He is currently a USAC Level 2 coach and a licensed massage therapist.
Switzer was diagnosed with colorectal cancer in 2012 at age 36. "Luckily, I was able to seek treatment at Duke," he says. According to Switzer, Duke Cancer Institute was a "game changer" with its total family wellness approach to helping him fight this disease. While battling cancer and the side effects, over the past five years Switzer started competing in Ironman triathlons. "I wanted to show cancer just how strong I could be with good medicine and great support from the Duke family," he says. Switzer now looks forward to teaming up with DCI and the V Foundation to help raise funds to keep science moving forward to better treatments and a cure. He hopes until a cure is found, that more programs can be funded to help patients and their families deal with the stress living with cancer. Until then, As his daughter says, “No matter what, Love is by your side with her best friend, Hope!”
About the V Foundation
The V Foundation for Cancer Research was founded by ESPN and legendary basketball coach Jim Valvano with one goal in mind: to achieve victory over cancer. Since its inception in 1993, the V Foundation has awarded over $170 million in cancer research grants, both locally and nationwide, and has grown to become one of the premier supporters of cutting-edge cancer research.
The Victory Ride is managed by Don't Ever Give Up, Inc., a 501(c)(3) charitable supporting organization formed by and operated exclusively for the benefit of the V Foundation. Don't Ever Give Up raises funds and awareness to end cancer by supporting cutting-edge research through the V Foundation.
Inspired by Jim Valvano's enduring legacy of passion and courage, we will never give up until cancer in all of its forms is defeated, once and for all.