Novartis and Amazing Race host ride tandem for MS awareness

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Novartis and Amazing Race host ride tandem for MS awareness
Novartis and Amazing Race host ride tandem for MS awareness
Amazing Race host Phil Keoghan will lead a Novartis-sponsored team of women pro cyclists on a 10-city bike tour to raise awareness of MS.

Keoghan has assembled a team of 10 pro female cyclists called NOW and Novartis for MS (NOW stands for No Opportunity Wasted, the motivational umbrella brand for Keoghan, Inc.). They'll race competitively on the women's cycling circuit, and the cyclists will be paired with people with MS who will serve as “honorary teammates,” riding tandem bikes with the pros in ten National MS Society Bike MS rides.

The aim, according to Keoghan's site, is “to demonstrate that people living with MS are not defined by it, despite the challenges it presents.” They'll bike in the first leg of the Bike MS tour on Saturday, near Denver, CO.

Keoghan, who has family with MS, biked a 3,500-mile cross-country ride to raise money for the National MS Society in 2009, and a film documenting his journey, The Ride, has shown nationwide this year, raising $200,000 for the group on top of the $500,000 haul from the charity ride.  

“Bringing attention to MS is a personal passion and ongoing mission for me, and I am thrilled to be lending my voice to this new program in support of this cause,” said Keoghan.

“By sharing the stories of people who are living with—and beyond—their disease, NOW and Novartis together hope to inspire a deeper understanding and appreciation for the MS community that we serve and are honored to be a part of,” said Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp. president Andre Wyss in a statement.

The team's doings will be documented through Keoghan's site, noopportunitywasted.com, and nowcyclingteam.com, along with Keoghan's Twitter and Facebook posts.

Novartis markets Gilenya for MS. The drug, the first oral treatment in a new class of S1PR modulators, was approved in September 2010.

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