Riitta Hänninen's passion for the great outdoors can be traced back to her childhood in the pristine nature of Finland. Thousands of lakes and vast forests lying just beyond her doorstep inspired a life of sports and a love of the outdoors. After graduating with a degree in Tourism and Event Management from Jyväskyla University of Applied Sciences, Riitta moved to Asia in 2004 to pursue a career in international business and event management. She worked in corporate events for four years before moving into sports event management. In 2020-2021 she completed an MBA at the Aalto University of Executive Education in Helsinki.
Riitta has competed in numerous trail-running, action sport and paddling races. In the 4 Deserts Ultramarathon Series, she competed in the Sahara Race (Namibia) 2017 earning the third place in the women's category. Besides trail sports, surf-ski paddling is one of her favourite activities on water but you may also find Riitta on her bike or cross-country skis depending on where in the world she is.
Riitta has worked on the management team at more than thirty RacingThePlanet / 4 Deserts Ultramarathons since she joined RacingThePlanet in 2010. She is responsible for planning, preparation and overseeing the events.