I’m back for the 2014 Chase! The Hapalua Half-Marathon Chase is a unique event and I was happy to be back this year. The premise behind the Chase is that 24 members of “Elite Team Hawaii” race the fastest World-Class Kenyan marathoners. Team Hawaii is made up of 24 of the best male and female runners based in Hawaii.
Team Hawaii start in groups based on their recent race performance. I was in the fastest female group waiting for the gun to go off standing on the line with Natalia Kravchuk, a World Class Triathlete. The race started at the Duke Kahanamoku Statue in Waikiki; headed out towards Ala Moana, towards Chinatown, then back past Ala Moana to Kapiolani Park and up the backside of Diamond Head before finishing in Kapiolani Park. It was a beautiful chilly morning; though halfway down the race the gusty wind started picking up. Through winds gusting over 25 mph and pelting rain, I decided to “go for it” and I ran 1:17 half-marathon pace for the first 6 miles running solo. For more than half of the race I battled against the wind and tried to remain focused and stay on pace for as long as I could. Going up the Manseratt Hill was extremely tough!
The race didn't go exactly as I was planning it to, but I’m pleased with the outcome. I ran almost 3 minutes faster than I did last year. I was able to catch 9 runners of the “Elite Team Hawaii” and pick up the pace going down the Diamond Head passing two more runners. Despite the inclimate weather and running all by myself, this race made me stronger physically and mentally.
At the end of the day, the "Chase" turned out to be a great event! I was extremely proud to be chosen a part of the "Elite Team Hawaii" second year in a row.
Huge thanks to Jonathan Lyau for organizing the race, and my sponsors: Runner’s Route, Bioastin and Jamba Juice Hawaii!