Putting cancer in the rear-view mirror
UPDATE 3:30pm: Initial figures have shown over $46,000 has been raised for breast cancer awareness and research this year during the Pink Run.
MORE than 400 bright pink four wheel drives took to the sands of Teewah Beach at the weekend to spread awareness and raise funds for breast cancer research.
The Dirty Down Under 4x4 Pink Run, now in its sixth year, has already seen tens of thousands of dollars raised for the National Breast Cancer Foundation.
"When we first started, it was purely an idea for awareness,” says Tanya Gosney, one of the organisers of the event.
"But as the run grew, it attracted the attention of local businesses who put up raffle prizes.”
With growing community interest, the focus of the event quickly turned to fundraising.
"Everything we earn goes towards the research, we couldn't have done this without the support of local businesses,” Mrs Gosney adds.
While the total for this year's run is still being counted, more than $30,000 was raised in 2015, a figure Mrs Gosney said she hopes to beat.
"We'd already managed to raise $7000 before the event got underway,” she says.
"I'm more than confident we'll be able to beat those numbers.”
More than just an opportunity for a good time, this year's ride also served as a reminder to those living with breast cancer they weren't alone in the fight.
"We happened to pass a woman who just seemed to appear out of nowhere,” Tanya says.
"She had just been diagnosed with cancer for the second time in her life and come out to the beach just to be alone.”
This moment, Mrs Gosney says, was a powerful reminder of why they were doing this.
"She came over and gave us a hug and told us 'this is a sign'. It was a beautiful, touching moment.”
With breast cancer the second most prevalent cancer in the country, many of those who took part in the beach run have felt the impact of the disease.
Statistics indicate up to 16,000 new cases will be diagnosed this year alone.
"Awareness and information is the key to beating this dreadful disease,” says Michaela Bowman, who took part in this year's event.
"Events like these are a lot of fun, but when there's an important cause to fight for as well - that's what makes it worthwhile.”