Gerda Steyn had a good feeling that she was going to break the long-standing Comrades Marathon women’s down-run record on Sunday.
And that feeling ended up being worth R1.2 million to her by the end of the day in Durban.
Free State-born Steyn already owned the up-run Comrades record before Sunday’s race between Pietermaritzburg and Durban, and she led the new race almost from start to finish.
“This is the best day of my life as an athlete,” she said after first explaining that she had done more than adequate training for the gruelling ultra-marathon.
I plan to carry the records (up and down) with pride and actually improve on them.
She received R500000 for coming first, another R500000 for creating the new down-run record of 5 hours, 44 minutes and 54 seconds, plus an extra R200000 for being the first South African woman to finish the race.
Donating to Phantane
Steyn said she will be donating some of her winnings to her club, Phantane AC, because they do “great work” among under-privileged kids.
Phantane is a development club and I am happy to represent them. I am happy to highlight the work they do.
She holds a total of four South African records at present, and plans to get even better at her craft.
“I felt tired towards the end of today’s race, but was still in control.”