Tyler McCandless, 26, Boulder CO, winning the Full Marathon with a course record time of 2:21:09. Photo by Jo Evans

Tyler McCandless, 26, Boulder CO, winning the Full Marathon with a course record time of 2:21:09.
Photo by Jo Evans

Colorado Runners Take Home Top Spots in 5th Annual Kaua`i Marathon

The 5th Annual Kaua`i Marathon and Half Marathon featured over 1,700 participants and over 170 youth runners in their inaugural Keiki Race.  The Aloha State was well represented with 911 local registrants of whom 615 were from Kaua`i.  Runners from 41 States and 13 countries enjoyed the magic of the Garden of Isle.

The performance of the day went to Tyler McCandless, 26, Boulder CO, winning the Full Marathon with a course record time of 2:21:09 and smashing the Grand Hyatt $15,000 Speed Challenge.  McCandless, sponsored by Newton Running, shared the excitement of his third victory.

“After giving presentations over the last two weeks to Kaua`i’s elementary school kids on setting goals, working hard, and the joy of achieving your goals, nothing felt better than crossing the finish line under my targeted time. The aloha spirit of the race spectators, volunteers, staff, and competitors was outstanding as always. Winning for the third consecutive year is a very special moment in time for me and I could not be happier to share the experience with the friendly folks on Kauai.”

Tim Aukshunas, 28 of Seattle, WA powered home for second place finishing in 2:36:00 and 2010 Kaua`i Marathon Champion Michael Wardian, 37 of Arlington, VA finished third with a time of 2:37:58.

The State of Colorado took both of the top spots in the Full Marathon as Nicole Chyr, 35 of Denver, CO won convincingly in 3:00:33.  Brooke Sugahara, 38 of Kapa`a, Kaua`i was second in the marathon at 3:24:43 and also the top local Kaua`i finisher.  The 2010 Kaua`i Marathon Champion, Becky Lynn Lassley, 35 rounded out the top three in 3:27:46.

Kevin Fong, 18 of Moraga, Calif. won the men’s Half Marathon with a time of 1:23:20 while Lauren Tippets, 28 of Los Altos, CA led the women with a time of 1:26:09.

Kaua`i’s top finishers were Derrick Ledesma and Brook Sugahara for the Full Marathon and Jordan Kahawai and Jackie Reding for the Half Marathon.

The 2013 event featured far more than the successful running of the Marathon and Half Marathon.  The weeklong event kicked off with 150 service men and women on August 26 with a military Shadow Half Marathon run in Bagram Airfield, Parwan Province Afghanistan.  Then the world class Sports and Fitness Expo provided a backdrop for runners to meet several running celebrities, as well as informative health and wellness seminars.  And finally, Saturday August 31st, the Inaugural Keiki Race energized over 170 children from the ages of 2 to 12 with a fun run at the Grand Hyatt Kaua`i Resort & Spa.

Endurance sports celebrity Dean Karnazes and Runner’s World’s Chief Running Officer Bart Yasso were both on hand for the week’s festivities handing out tips and inspiration to all the runners. Yasso believes the event is one of the best 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, Hawaii Tourism Authority, Kaua`i Visitors Bureau, Grand Hyatt Kaua`i Resort & Spa, Fresh Point, Kaua`i Coffee, The Parrish Collection Kauai, Cap’t Andy’s Sailing Adventures, Kalapaki Joe’s, Kaua`i Heritage Properties and Po`ipu Beach Resort Association.  Many other local businesses assisted by providing volunteer lunches, accommodations and supplies for the medical tent.

Over $7,000 was generously donated to numerous local non-profit groups volunteering for race day activities.  Niumalu Canoe Club, Kalaheo Elementary School, Koloa Elementary School, and the Waimea High School Project Grad are just a few.

For 2013 results and more information, visit  thekauaimarathon.com.