JAMM AQUINO / JAQUINO@STARBULLETIN.COM
Traffic flow was light and smooth yesterday as dozens of HPD officers were posted along the Honolulu Triathlon course route. The event took to an entirely different route this year.
New triathlon race route is a hit
The organizer says that there were few problems with the Ala Moana path
Organizers of the Honolulu Triathlon say yesterday's new route through Ala Moana Beach Park is a winner.
The old route took athletes from Kapiolani Park in Waikiki through Hawaii Kai and back, eliciting complaints from drivers and residents. Mayor Mufi Hannemann had threatened to deny the race a permit if the concerns were not addressed.
The new route was similar to the one used for the Great Aloha Run, with participants starting and ending at Ala Moana Park.
The 1,500-meter swim course was off Ala Moana.
Organizer Bill Burke said yesterday's triathlon was much smoother than in years past. "We're extremely pleased," he said yesterday after the race was finished.
"This race course was just perfect. It's going to stay."
Burke said the Ala Moana route allowed more swimmers to get into the water at the same time, decreasing the duration of street closures. He said all the athletes had started the bicycling portion of the route by 9:20 a.m. yesterday.
The old course meant some swimmers were getting out of the water as late as noon to start the bicycle course.
Of the 904 people who registered to participate in yesterday's triathlon, 737 finished, Burke said.
An Australian, Mitchell Dean, won the men's race. Jasmine Oeinck of Littleton, Colo., took the women's title.
Burke said the triathlon will likely be scheduled a little earlier or later next year so it does not coincide with Mother's Day.
People headed to Aloha Tower Marketplace or John Dominis Restaurant for Mother's Day celebrations yesterday were slowed by race road closures and detours.
A shuttle was provided for those headed to a John Dominis breakfast. "We were able to work it out," Burke said.
"We didn't affect many residents at all."
Burke said there were fewer spectators this year.
But he said that was expected because when the race was in Waikiki, it naturally attracted more tourists.