10 Hawai‘i Races to Watch in 2019
Is getting or staying fit one of your goals in 2019? If so, here are some races to keep runners, triathletes and bicyclists on track.
Update: Early entry for Hawai‘i residents officially opened on Jan. 22, 2019. From now until Feb. 3, Hawai‘i residents can take advantage of lower entry fees for Honolulu Marathon, Start to Park 10k and Kalakaua Merrie Mile before registration opens up to Mainland residents on Feb. 4 (and international residents on Feb. 18).
Photo: Courtesy of Honolulu Marathon
1. King’s Runner 10K
VIDEO: COURTESY OF KING’S RUNNER 10K
Kick off the year with a 10-kilometer run around Honolulu. Put on by the experienced crew of the Honolulu Marathon, this event, in its second year, features a flat course—perfect for hitting a new personal record. Runners, walkers and even joggers pushing strollers are welcome to this family-friendly event that starts and finishes at the recently revamped Thomas Square.
Thomas Square, thehapalua.com
2. Revel Kulia
Do you enjoy downhill running? The Revel Kulia on Hawai‘i Island is a downhill marathon with a more than 5,500-foot descent over 26.2 miles, from Saddle Road at Waiki‘i down to Waikoloa. There’s a half-marathon option as well. Be a part of the inaugural event and experience the Big Island’s mountains, meadows and lava fields at this Boston Marathon qualifier.
Waikoloa, Hawai‘i Island, runrevel.com
3. Hapalua Half Marathon
VIDEO: COURTESY OF Hapalua Half Marathon
The Hapalua Half Marathon is all the excitement of a marathon with only half the mileage. This spring event covers 13.1 miles from Waikīkī through Downtown, around Diamond Head and back to Kapi‘olani Park. Each year, world-class marathon champions line up with the rest of us mortals.
*Sign up for the King’s Runner 10K and the Hapalua Half Marathon together and get 10 percent off the entry fee.
4. Hawai‘i 70.3
This is your chance to race on the famed Ironman World Championship course, and maybe even qualify to race it in October. Swim 2,000 meters in the beautiful waters of Hāpuna, ride 56 miles to Hāwī and back, then run 13.1 miles on the Mauna Lani Golf Course. Sound intimidating? Consider a training clinic, like those put on by bocahawaii.com or bcendurancetrainings.com.
Kohala Coast, Hawai‘i Island, ironman.com
5. Mango Madness 10-ish Miler
Photo: Courtesy of Hawaiian Ultra Running Team
HURT (Hawaiian Ultra Running Team) puts on a series of trail races that get increasingly longer throughout the year. Mango Madness is our favorite: The course changes every year (sometimes it’s not even the same for every participant), and the best part is the community vibe—everyone is there to support one another and have fun. It sells out so sign up early, and come prepared for anything, even balancing a mango on a spoon for the last 100 yards.
Makiki Pumping Station, hurthawaii.com
6. Tinman Triathlon
Sometime in July
Tinman took a hiatus last year, but the annual “People’s Triathlon” is back in 2019 with an 800-meter swim at Queen’s Beach, a 25-mile bike ride and a 10-kilometer run. For more than 30 years, Tinman has been a welcoming triathlon for racers and weekend warriors alike.
Kapi‘olani Park, tinmanhawaii.com
7. Nā Wāhine Triathlon Festival
Sometime in September
For the ladies: The Nā Wāhine Triathlon celebrated its 20th year in 2018. The sprint triathlon consists of a 500-meter swim, 12-mile bike ride and 5-kilometer run. The event, an ideal first triathlon, is held in a positive and supportive environment, and now there’s even a super-sprint, with half the swim and bike distances.
Kapi‘olani Park, nawahineracinghi.com
8. Honolulu Century Ride
Video: Courtesy of hblridealoha
Choose the 25-mile, 50-mile, 75-mile or the full century, and enjoy coned-off streets and fully stocked aid stations all the way from Waikīkī to Ka‘a‘awa and back. There’s mechanical support as well, setting riders up for success regardless of the distance they choose. No bike? No problem—there’s a Biki stop just a block from the start.
Kapi‘olani Park, hbl.org
9. Kalākaua Merrie Mile
VIDEO: COURTESY OF Kalākaua Merrie Mile
Have you run a mile for time since high school? Didn’t think so. Part of the Honolulu Marathon, the Merrie Mile is held the day before the marathon and is an out and back, flat and fast mile race. Elite runners chasing sub-4-minute miles start last, so start up front and try to not get passed.
10. Honolulu Marathon
Video: Courtesy of Honolulu Marathon
There’s a reason this shows up on every marathon bucket list, for local runners and those from all around the world. Nearly 30,000 people toe the line to run the Honolulu Marathon. You’ve got all year to prepare, so what’s stopping you? Look for kama‘āina early entry some time in January.