McCandless Repeats as Champion, Ely Breaks Women’s Record
PO`IPU, September 2, 2012 — The 4th Annual Kaua`i Marathon and Half Marathon featured almost 2,000 participants finishing in beautiful Po`ipu Beach. Kauai residents led the charge with 553 runners, the most ever in the event’s four-year history. Beyond great local participation, the race proved to be a world-class destination event as it featured 1,829 participants represented by 45 states, Puerto Rico and DC, as well as 15 countries.
The men’s marathon was controlled from the beginning by defending champion Tyler McCandless, barely missing his own course record and finishing in 2:23:52. McCandless, from Boulder, CO battled hills, slim competition and high humidity to grab his second victory.
After his win McCandless said, “Last year I came to the Garden Isle of Kaua`i with a goal of winning the race. I ended the day with a win and course record. Today I ran as best I could and came up just off my course record, but did not come up short of an incredible experience. The aloha spirit of the race is unrivaled, and I’m very proud to be a two-time Kaua`i Marathon Champion.”
On the women’s side, Brett Ely of Natick, MA smashed the women’s marathon course record by over 24 minutes, finishing in 2:46:02. She was challenged by recent San Francisco Marathon champion, Devon Crosby-Helms, who finished in 2nd with a time of 2:49:28.
Ely stated, “This was the most challenging marathon course that I have run, but the most rewarding. The community support and aloha along the course was amazing with event volunteers, as well as residents in neighborhoods cheering on the runners. “
The men’s Half Marathon was won by Troy Harrison of Waterfall, PA with a time of 1:15:15 while the women were led by repeat champion Emily Shertzer of Jonestown, PA with a time of 1:21:19. Both Harrison and Shertzer were part of the Team National Guard, which had over 80 runners in the event.
Kaua`i’s top finishers were Mark Bogner and Brook Sugahara for the full marathon and Jordan Kahawai and Chelsea Smith-Wishard for the half marathon.
Endurance sports celebrity Dean Karnazes and Chief Running Officer Bart Yasso of Runner’s
W0rld were both on hand for the week’s festivities, handing out tips and inspiration to all the runners. Yasso believes The Kaua`i Marathon is one of the best destination events because of the accessibility to his fellow running community through the Expo, pre-race fun run and the finish line party. He loves the personal connections he makes and always looks forward to meeting the people of Kaua`i.
Several sponsors made the event possible, including: County of Kaua`i, Kaua`i Visitors Bureau, Grand Hyatt Kaua`i Resort & Spa, Fresh Point, Kaua`i Coffee, Kalapaki Joe’s, Kaua`i Heritage Properties, Po`ipu Beach Resort Association and Holo Holo Boat Tours. Many other local businesses assisted by providing volunteer lunches, accommodations and supplies for the medical tent.
Numerous local non-profit groups volunteering for race-day activities received over $7,000 in donations. Niumalu Canoe Club, Kalaheo Elementary School, Koloa Elementary School, Kapa`a High School Project Grad and the Waimea High School Project Grad are just a few. Other non-profit groups attended the event, including Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s ‘Team N Training” and A-T. Collectively, they raised over $270,000 for their respective charities.
To register for this world-class event next year’s 5th Annual Kaua`i Marathon, to take place on September 1, 2013, visit www.thekauaimarathon.com.