The Big Island International Marathon may have the fastest group ever as three time Kona Champion, Justin Gillette, will attempt to break the course record of 2 hours 39 minutes.
Besides Gillette the field returns defending champion Billy “The Ghost” Barnett along with 2010 runner up Jason Braswell, owner of the Big Island Running Company in Kona.
Alaska Marathon champion, Erik Johnson, will also be making his first appearance in Hilo. Johnson won the Mayor’s Marathon in 2 hours 42 minutes.
Three time BIIM champion Jason “The Thorpedo” Thorp will again test his running skills. For the ladies look for Braswell’s sister, Erica, to do some damage on the course as the collegiate star from Alabama is a very talented distance runner.
Regardless of who is running in the marathon or half marathon the race is one of the scenic in the world with wooden bridges, dense bamboo rain forest, and waterfalls all during the first 8 miles of the race.
Everything gets underway on Friday, March 18, with the Carbo Load Pasta Dinner at the Hilo Hawaiian Hotel Moku Ola Room starting at 6 pm. The dinner party includes a great hula show. Seating is limited to 100 people and there are a few tickets remaining.
Cost is $25 at the door. Call 969-7400 for more info.
Then on Saturday, March 19, from noon to 6 pm at the Hilo Hawaiian Hotel it is runner packet pickup in conjunction with a Health and Fitness Expo. The public is invited to attend the Expo which will feature top quality shoes from the Big Island Running Company, body fat testing, blood pressure screening, and much more.