Skip to main content

Vanderbilt University School of Nursing professor to ride with Lance Armstrong in Bristol-Myers Squibb Tour of Hope

Jul. 27, 2005, 12:14 PM

Joan King, Ph.D., M.S.N., R.N.C., a cancer survivor and director of the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing‘s Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Program, has been chosen to ride across the country alongside seven-time Tour de France winner and cancer survivor Lance Armstrong in a campaign called the Bristol-Myers Squibb Tour of Hope.

“I‘m excited. I‘m honored. I‘m training very hard. I just hope I can be a strong team member. I‘m the oldest woman on the team. It‘s going to be a huge, physically demanding challenge,” said King. But the breast cancer survivor says her past experiences have helped prepare her for this journey. “The ride itself, in many ways, is meant to correlate with having cancer. It‘s a team approach, you need experts there to help you and you don‘t always know what‘s ahead.”

King, along with 23 other teammates chosen nationwide, will cover 3,300 miles in nine days on a custom-designed Trek bike. The team has been broken into groups of six, who will take turns pounding the pavement 24 hours a day logging about 100 miles per group. The Tour starts Sept. 29 in
San Diego
and ends Oct. 8 in


The cyclists will make several stops along the way to raise awareness about cancer and the need for increased funding to support clinical research. The Tour will make a stop in


on Oct. 2, the anniversary of Armstrong‘s cancer diagnosis.

King, an avid cyclist before being chosen for the Tour, is in great shape to begin the journey having ridden about 80 to100 miles a week on her own. Now, she receives a specialized training schedule to prepare her for the trek from the same trainers who work with Armstrong. “I bike six days a week focusing on cadence and heart rate, not really on the miles,” she said, adding that it adds up to about 150 to170 miles a week.

When King and the other cyclists on the Tour finish their cross-country journey they will hand deliver signed “Promise” cards to


from people they‘ve met along the ride and have encouraged to get educated about cancer and their own personal risk factors. Anyone can sign up to ride with Armstrong and the Tour team when they reach the U.S. Capitol or sign the “Promise” online at: .

Contact: Heather L. Hall

Phone: (615) 322-3894


Recent Stories from VUMC News and Communications Publications

Vanderbilt Medicine
VUMC Voice