Ryan Sandes has become synonymous with breaking records wherever he runs. This time, upon winning the 83km La Advance Trail of the North Face Transgrancanaria, Ryan has become the first person in history to win an ultra-marathon trail run on EVERY continent in the world.
The fact that he only started trail running 7 years ago makes this feat that much more astounding. The same weekend Ryan was also awarded the Western Cape Ministerial Commendation Awards.
“With The North Face Transgrancanaria being the first race of my 2013 season, I was really nervous going into the race and did not know what to expect. I really wanted a victory in Europe to tick off my goal of winning an ultra trail race on all seven continents. This definitely led to my pre-race nerves as I can be quite harsh on myself at times.
I was also very excited and looking forward to the challenge of climbing 4000m plus over the 83km. I have always been better suited to the ‘flatter’ trail races so I have been doing some work on my climbing over the past few months to try and get up to scratch with some of the ‘mountain goats’,” says Ryan.
Ryan’s 7 continent wins are made up of:
Winner of the Racing the Planet Gobi Desert Race (Asia)
Winner of the Racing the Planet Sahara Desert Race (Africa)
Winner of the Jungle Marathon Amazon (235km) (South America)
Winner of the Racing the Planet Atacama Desert Race (South America)
Winner of the Racing the Planet Antarctica (The Last Desert Race) Antarctica
Winner of the Puffer Trail Race (Africa)
Winner of the Leadville 100 (North America)
Winner of the Racing the Planet Nepal (Asia)
Winner of the Vibram Hong Kong 100 (Asia)
Winner of the North Face Australia 100 (Australia)
Winner of the Salomon Skyrun (Africa)
The North Face TransGrancanaria (Europe)
He's not stopping anytime soon, either. Says Ryan, “I am hungrier and more focused than ever to continue trying to improve as an athlete and be the best I can be. Most importantly I want to continue having fun and making the most of my time on this planet. My next race is TNF Aus 100 in May and then it’s Western States 100 June … I can’t wait!”