Riana Wins Om die Dam Ultra

Riana van Niekerk shows of her class in the colours of the Mr Price Club. Picture: Gerhard UysRiana van Niekerk of the Mr Price Club won the Old Mutual Om die Dam ultra-marathon in 3:22:39 on Saturday 17 March 2007.

This time is the second fastest time ever run on the very tough course. Frith van der Merwe’s record set in 1994 is only a min faster than the time Riana ran.

Riana was second at the SA Marathon Championships in February, in a personal best time of 2:43:00, and has also won the Petro SA Marathon in 2:49:33.

Riana won the Wally Hayward Marathon, the Bergville Ladysmith Ultra, the Pretoria Marathon and the Loskop Marathon, all in 2006.

Riana says her highlight of last year was winning a gold medal in the Comrades Marathon, after finishing 8th.

The Om die Dam Marathon held in Hartebeespoortdam is one of the richest and biggest races in the country, with 7000 runner competing in the 50km event.

This led to the top athletes of South Africa and Africa competing in the race. The men’s race was won by Sipho Ncube, also of the Mr Price Club, in 2:50:54.

Riana used this race as training for the Comrades Marathon, which she has finished in the top ten twice before, and hopes to do well again this year.

Read more about Riana at her website.

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