Molokai Paddlers Shine in Olukai Races
By Clare Seeger Mawae
Twelve-year-old Alex Mawae charged at the Olukai for the Stand Up Race on May 2, taking second place in his division of 17 and under in a record time of 1:09.26. The course was from Maliko Gulch to Kanaha Beach along Maui’s North Shore, a total distance of over eight miles. He smashed his previous times and his personal goal for this year. Only 25 minutes behind World Champion Connor Baxter, this is certainly not bad for this young man! This year, the 17 and under division was strong with 11 contestants out of 327. Alex finished 117 overall at the Olukai and one of the younger contestants for this race.
Saturday’s conditions were a steady 15 to 20 knots plus with some nice swells which gave everyone an opportunity to break their personal bests with Andrea Moller, 53:19, from Maui taking a 7th consecutive win and Connor Baxter also from Maui with his fourth straight win in a record time of 44:25. Clare Mawae from Molokai finished fifth in her division, vowing to step it up a notch for next year.
Sunday was the canoe race day and the Molokai paddlers did awesome in this completive field of OC1 and OC2 paddlers. Chad Lima charged and finished 18th overall out of a fleet of 137 and 4th in his division with a time of 50:22. Lili Napolean, Cami Kimball and Desiree Puhi all took first place in their divisions. Choppie and Jerome Kalama placed fourth in the OC2 mixed, along with Crystal Egusa in her division.
Overall, the Molokai paddlers did awesome this weekend and it was good to see so many Molokai paddlers participate in this event.