After nearly two years, residents and travelers returned to the 13th annual Kaua‘i Marathon and Half Marathon for a world-class race experience that broke at dawn on Sunday.
Weekend events kicked off Friday, Sept. 2 with a mission to gather locals and visitors together to foster camaraderie, friendship, and charitable giving throughout the weekend.
Since the inaugural event in 2009, authorities have scratched the self-imposed limit of 1,500 runners, often accepting new entries minutes before the start time to curb the number of registered no-shows. And while participation in the 2019 event garnered 1,795 entries, this year’s event organizers praised the influx of the 2,300-competitor turnout.
“This year we have a record number of participants,” said Emma Bridges from the Kaua‘i Marathon, noting the 14 countries and 43 states in attendance vying for the top spot. “We have returning superstars, first-timers, and people from all over the world.”
The course began in Po‘ipū with the 10-time winner and racing all-star, Tyler McCandless who finished first overall in the half marathon at 1:06:10 – nearly 30 seconds earlier than two years prior, while Pedro Paulino Pais Abreu of Sunnyvale, Calif. completed the full course at 2:59:54. Routes sharing the first 11 miles along the contour of the scenic coastline offered views of the island’s picturesque landscape, considered by some to be the very best in the world.
See a full list of race results here.
“I’ve been coming to this event for 10 years now just to see that big blue,” said one New York City runner to Kaua‘i Now who emphasized their excitement for the weather as they passed by. “I depend on a cool race. 2019 was so hot, but this year is something special. We got rained on in Kalāheo!”
Annually, the event also depends on “hundreds of volunteers to extend the aloha spirit,” stated marathon founder, Jeff Sacchini while directing traffic before the start of the race. “I’m so proud of what we’re about to accomplish today after having enlisted so much help!”
If you would like to be part of next year’s community event, click here.