What's not to like!? (about: 2001)|
A Runner from St. Michaels, Maryland (3/25/01)
Location, location, location! This is a wonderful destination marathon, and the scenery can't be beat. The carboload 2 days before is not to be missed! Good food, great entertainment, and gorgeous ocean views of whales. The 5K the preceding day is a fun warm-up with about 600 entrants, plus a nice souvenir tshirt to bring home. Lots of participants from Japan made it interesting. However, don't expect to run any fast times on this course. About 2700 registrants in 2001 for the marathon. It's a huge Team in Training event with all that implies -- lots of participants at all fitness and speed levels. There are some wicked hills at the 8-10 mile mark which don't seem so tough at the time but drain your energy for the later race. Miles 11-22 or so are flat, seaside, with majestic surf views but very little breeze. In 2001 it was HOT and TOUGH -- over 84 degrees and everyone that finished (only 79% of registrants) must have managed their hydration and effort level extremely carefully. (Frankly, I probably would have dropped out too if I had less experience and grit.) Aid stations were plentiful and well-staffed with enthusiastic personnel, and several included entertainment (hula girls, Japanese drummers, etc.) Actual spectators were non-existent, however -- shoppers in Lahaina seemed indifferent to runners. Tshirts only for finishers -- if you want extras, buy in advance because they were not available afterward. Great followup by organizers with handsome bound results booklet, finishers certificate and photos available the morning after. This is a wonderful marathon for the traveling/recreational runner that welcomes a challenge!