When I arrived at Keopuolani Park bright and early (8:45am) for the MIL Cross-Country meet, I saw the runners and spectators gathering near the "Pit" area of the park. There was no parking nearby, so I decided to park in the lot near the YMCA. Rather than walking back toward the "Pit" or going through the botanicals, I decided to walk parallel to the softball fields. For some reason, I thought the race course would take it all over Keopuolani Park.
Despite the absence of race trail markers, cones and officials, I sat and waited for the runners to come to me. I waited . . . and waited . . . and waited. Then when I looked back down toward the "Pit" I saw runners criss-crossing back and forth. Crap! The course was confined to the "Pit" area!
I rushed down the walking path toward the "Pit". Just as I passed the intersection with the botanical garden path, I noticed a small pack of runners going towards the "Pit." One of them was the Lunas' Corban Kaikkonen.
I surmised that this was the head of the pack and that the remaining Lunas' boys runners would be coming down the same path shortly. Turns out, I was capturing the last 1/2 lap of the race, and the boys were running for the finish line. It was too far/too late for me to get down to the "Pit" and situate myself near the finish line. If I was going to get shots of the boys team in action, I would have to stand my ground, wait for the Lunas' runners and get as much shots as I could.
Then it was the girls' turn. Now that I knew the lay of the land, I established myself on the top of the hill, waiting for runners to run up, and talking story with Matthew Thayer.
Lahainaluna Results (Varsity only):
26. Kenny Kaikkonen, 21:23
39. Blake Ramelb, 22:59
40. Erich Skrotzki, 23:04
46. Curtis Fletcher, 23:25
51. Jeremy DeGracia, 24:09
56. Billy Schusser, 25:20
6. Sydney McKinney, 24:01
10. Kailey Sager, 24:24
39. Syren Pendergast, 30:39
JV Boys Champion: Corban Kaikkonen, 17:56
For the Maui News article on this meet, click here.
For more of my photos, click here.