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We have been receiving a large amount of telephone calls and emails about our previous Kauai Marathon. We do not have a event scheduled for 2010.



Kauai Marathon

Kauai Marathon draws 140 runners to challenging cane and coffee field course

Garden Island Newspaper - March 2003

Leo McCarthy, overall winner, from Kalihiwai, Kauai, Hawaii.


Princeville runner Walter Bono's dream of holding a marathon on Kaua'i with an island theme has come true.

Sunday morning 140 runners took part in the first running of the new Kauai Marathon. An earlier marathon was held in the 1980s, staged by North Shore resident Larry King and his associates on the East Side of the island.

The full marathon race started at 6:30 a.m. with an even split of marathon and half-marathon runners.

Dozens of volunteers manned aid stations along the red dirt cane haul roads that served as the main section of the course.

The race began at a site near the Koloa Fire Station and turned around at the Kauai Coffee Company's visitor center at Numila to the east of 'Ele'ele.

The course featured two steep hill runs, one going down one coming up, with those running the full marathon facing two uphill runs.

"The event went excellent, and volunteers made the event," said Bono.

First place in the men's overall marathon run was Leo McCarthy, a Kaua'i-based runner. About 75 percent of the runners came from off island, Bono said, including runners from Germany, the Mainland, Spain and Canada, as well as O'ahu and other Neighbor Islands.

Ray Charron, owner of Aloha Images in Kapa'a and a veteran marathon runner and race organizer, complimented Bono on organizing the local marathon.

"The Kauai Marathon was a very well run first time event, and gave locals and tourists alike a chance to see the beauty of the south side of the island," Charron said.

Charron took first place in the over-55 men's event.

Much of the course crossed Alexander & Baldwin land, and runners were issued special permits to run on the land.

Bono said he drove around the island and looked for a special site to hold the race.

"I wanted a course that would be challenging and memorable, and (one) the runners would have a good feeling about when they completed it," he said. "That's why I picked a course that had a lot of nature attached to it."

"No houses, no cars, no buildings-all in nature with cane and coffee fields, it was quite a pristine course," Bono said.

He said along the course volunteers were positive and friendly towards the runners.

"A lot of friendships made at the end of the race between visitors and local residents," he said.

The race organizer focused on adding a Kaua'i touch to the race. Race T-shirts were created by Red Dirt Shirts, local vegetables and fruits were served to runners, signs were made on Kaua'i. Finisher's medals were molded in the shape of Kaua'i.

"Everybody had a great time, that was the goal," said Bono. "(We're) creating a healthy event, it's a good thing to have on the island"

Bono designed the medals in the shape of Kaua'i.

He said marketing the race was taken care of through word of mouth on Kaua'i, and through www.KauaiMarathon.com, the Web site for the race.

Bono started organizing about the race about a year ago. He had run in the Honolulu Marathon and the Maui Marathon, and said he felt there should again be a marathon run on Kaua'i.

Jim and Cyrila Pycha, owners of Re/Max Kauai, plus Joe Taitano, Director of Human Resources from Hyatt Regency Kauai, helped Bono in organizing and staging the race.

Supporters of the event included Re/Max Kauai, the Hyatt Regency Kauai, A&B Properties, Menehune Water, Red Dirt Shirts made a custom T-shirt, Xerox Corporation and Grove Farm Co., Big Save, Safeway and Kaua'i Community College.

Bono said he's planning to make the Kauai Marathon an annual event, and has tentatively set a race date of March 14, 2004 for the next race. He advised that runners watch the race Web site for the announcement.

"The goal for the Kaua'i Marathon is to keep it a fun event," he said of future races. "The number of runners will always be limited so the runners will always have a good experience, I want to keep it a quality event."

The Kauai Marathon is a member of the Road Runners Club of America.

TGI Editor Chris Cook can be reached at ccook@pulitzer.net or 245-3681 (ext. 227).



Overall Mens
Leo McCarthy - 3:19:12
Ray Charron - 3:25:27
Doug Asmussen - 3:27:57

Overall Ladies
Janet Snyder - 3:32:04
Denise Morrison - 4:05:11
Patti Jennings - 4:14:05

Under 30 Mens
Lai Rakesh - 3:51:09
Mike Reynolds - 4:00:00
Ivan Hurlburt - 4:13:43

Under 30 Womens
Mya Wolf - 4:29:37
Julie Earp - 4:54:25
Sharlene Heppie - 5:15

Mens 30-55
Leo McCarthy - 3:19:12
Doug Amussen 3:27:57
Uwe Kernn - 3:28:47

Womens 30-55
Janet Snyder - 3:32:04
Denise Morrison - 4:05:11
Patti Jennings - 4:14:05

Men Over 55
Ray Charron - 3:25:27

Overall 1/2 Marathon
Ian Johnson - 1:38:04
Tom Kelecy - 1:40:05
Daniel Velasco - 1:41:05


Very nice!!! (about: 2005)
Course: 4 Organization: 3 Fans: 2
P. S. from Brazil (3/24/06)
6-10 previous marathons | 2 Kauai Marathons

Really good race!

Run Kauai (about: 2005)
Course: 5 Organization: 4 Fans: 3
P. F. from Sao Paulo,Brazil (3/13/06)
3 previous marathons | 1 Kauai Marathon

The most beautiful marathon I´ve ever run. Magnificent scenery, just awesome, I have no words to describe it!

A Great Training Run (about: 2003)
Course: 4 Organization: 4 Fans: 2
I. J. from Chicago (4/19/03)

Let's get this out of the way first. This is NOT a PR course; nor should it be. As mentioned by the others, it is run on an old cane road, which will leave your shoes stained with real Hawaiian red dirt. There is a real steep hill at 2.5. The run down is a blast but you need to watch your foot falls. The run up ain't so fun.
The small organization should get a lot of credit for pulling this off. After the run was over I viewed it as a great training run -- very pretty course with challenging terrain but well-personed water stops every few miles.

Great challenge in a magnificent scenery (about: 2003)
Course: 5 Organization: 4 Fans: 1
W. K. from Summit, New Jersey, USA (4/5/03)

If you're the minimalist runner who is comfortable with challenging courses, basic amenities, but plenty of heart and spirit from the organizers, then this is the right race for you. This was the first official marathon on this Hawaian island. It was announced as being partly an off-road course that turned out to be entirely on lava dirt trails through mainly sugar cane fields and coffee plantations overlooking the Pacific Ocean. The course is in its entirety on private land, so don't expect any spectators to cheer you up. But most likely you won't need that anyway as you'll be so occupied with soaking up the beauty of the landscape you're cruising thru that time will be flying, barely comparable to any other long run. The many hills and uneven surface are demanding though, and so is the heat. However, if you stick to a slightly slower than usual pace (add 20 to 30 minutes to your PR) and take in enough fluids (that is you really should drink something at every water station) then you'll be fine in finishing without problems (and you will not even hit the so-called 'wall'). This marathon must also be a perfect training run for everyone preparing for Badwater or other similar ultras.
Apparently the marathon was organized by only a few running devotees, all the more everything worked out without a problem.
But for the future be aware that the slots for the run are pretty limited, and this was not indicated on their website at all. As a consequence, the website was brought down out of a sudden the night before I finally went to register online. Fortunately the race director still let me register by mail, which I appreciated a lot as you can imagine.
It was my second marathon overall and a great experience rounding up a terrific vacation on the island. And in addition, when do you ever get again a chance to be amongst the first 20 finishers with a time slightly over four hours?!

Hot and Hilly but beautiful (about: 2003)
Course: 3 Organization: 3 Fans: 2
G. J. from Oklahoma (3/28/03)

This race is an out and back 6.55 mi down an old cane road through a coffee plantation and beautiful sea and mountain vistas.The marathon is x2 on this course. There is a serious hill on mi 2.5 which you get the fun of running twice on the marathon. Not a PR run with starting temp at 72 and humid but worth a look.

The half rules! Gorgeous views every way (about: 2003)
Course: 5 Organization: 4 Fans: 3
F. D. from Brooklyn, NY (3/28/03)

Very much enjoyed running the tough, hilly, hot, first annual Kauai Half Marathon. Beautiful all natural rural course - entirely on a red dirt road along coffee fields w. ocean and mnt views. Small field of runners (160+ total). Scenic fun run.

Note: Full marathon was the same course of the half twice - the half took you out to a point and back.

A must for the challenge seeking runner! (about: 2003)
Course: 5 Organization: 5 Fans: 3
A. W. from Minneapolis, Minnesota (3/26/03)

Breathtaking! Not sure if it was from the hills or the scenery! This was one of the most difficult courses I have run, but the views (and smells) were amazing. Great organization for a first time race. I am looking forward to next year already.

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