Berg River Canoe Marathon Media Release

 No: Berg2305

30 May 2023

    Embargo : None

Written By : Nick Tatham

50 Berg finishes on the horizon for Malherbe

Paarl The 2023 Berg River Canoe Marathon will be significant for a number of reasons, and one will be that the stalwart of the race, Jannie Malherbe will be going for his fiftieth finish when the race reaches Velddrif on Saturday, 8 July.

Malherbe has the second most Berg finishes in history with 49 and is only second to the late Giel van Deventer. This years Berg will carry further significance in that it will be the first since Van Deventer tragically passed away in 2022.

The pair paddled many Bergs together and Malherbe knows that this years race will be an important tribute to Van Deventer and his influence on the iconic race through the Swartland.

We will definitely miss Giel a lot this year, a sombre Malherbe said. He was like a Berg encyclopaedia and could tell you anything you needed to know about the race and the river.

I would always follow him for the first few days because he knew where the obstacles were and knew the river better than anyone.

He will not only be missed by me, but he will be missed by the whole paddling community this year.

With a 50th Berg finisher's medal at the finish line for the 84-year-old Malherbe, the numbers arent the motivation.

50 is just a figure and its definitely not why I paddle. I paddle because its a way of life for me and the Berg is such an important part of my year.

The race splits my year in half; and I take four days off in July where I can get away from everything; from work, my cell phone and just enjoy myself.

I love training in Wilderness and at the moment Im paddling about four hours a week which should be enough to get me to Velddrif!

Having finished 49 Bergs in the past Malherbe has seen the river and the race in every different shape and form and he knows how to pick out the significant ones over the years.

You always remember the difficult ones. The ones with the headwinds and the low rivers because those are the memorable ones.

The races done on full rivers with four sunny days arent memorable, but they do remind you that every Berg is different.

Its a special race that has a special place in my heart and as long as I remain fit and healthy, Ill still be paddling the Berg, Malherbe explained.

The 2023 Berg River Canoe Marathon will take place from Paarl to Velddrif from 5 to 8 July.

More information can be found at

Social media :
Facebook :
Instagram :
Twitter :

(click to download
hi-res pic)
Caption Photographer Click HERE to download  hi-res pic
Berg River Canoe Marathon logo - JPeg  
Berg River Canoe Marathon landscape - JPeg  
For 49-time Berg River Canoe Marathon finisher Jannie Malherbe the 2023 edition of the race is not about getting to that fifty mark but embracing his health and enjoying being able to take on a race that he loves from 6-9 July. John Hishin/
Gameplan Media
Conditions of usage of photographs: All photographs supplied and hyperlinked herewith may be used free of charge, with full credit to the photographer and agency as provided. The photographs may not be modified or retouched in any way, but may be cropped to suit the layout requirements of the publications. The photographs provided may be used exclusively for editorial purposes, and may be reprinted in any newspaper, magazine, television programme or on any website. These photographs may not be used for any commercial or promotional purpose, including but not limited to posters, advertisements, commercials, promotional email correspondence, point-of-sale material or any retail promotion. Should such usage be desired, please contact us at the details below.
Is this of no value to you?
This media release is intended for use by media professionals covering this specific activity or sport. Should this release not be relevant you, please advise us immediately and we will be glad to remove your name from this particular database. It would be useful to us if you could advise us which subjects you would like to continue receiving releases on.
For any further information, or if you cannot access the images, please contact:
Gameplan Media