Categorized | Canoe Racing, Sports

Outrigger race to welcome teams from around world (Aug. 28-Sept. 1)


With registration deadlines looming, Kai Opua Canoe Club is preparing to welcome more than 2,500 outrigger canoe paddlers from around the world to Kona.

Crews from Australia, Canada, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, Peru, Tahiti, United Kingdom and an estimated 75 crews from the US are headed to Kona to compete at the 44th Annual Queen Liliuokalani Long Distance Outrigger Canoe Races.

Hawaii will also be well represented with multiple crews throughout the islands from Kauai to Oahu to Molokai to Maui making plans to be at the starting line. More than 60 Big Island crews are also expected on the starting line.

The signature 18-mile long distance race along the Kona coast will host some of outrigger canoe racing’s best paddlers and crews at the Waa Kaukahi (races for single hull canoes).

Women’s crews will line up across Kailua Bay and head for their finish line at Honaunau. Iron women crews, who paddle the entire 18-miles without any crew changes, start the race at 7:30 a.m., followed by women crews paddling in the Unlimited division, whose boats have no weight limit and finally, the women crews who will change paddlers throughout the race get their start at 7:40 am.

Both the men’s and women’s races have five-minute split staggered starts.

Waa Kaukahi men’s crews follow the same staggered start racing from Honaunau back to Kailua starting at 11:45 a.m. The first men’s crew is expected to cross the finish line in Kailua Bay about 1 p.m.

Best place to view the race? Book a seat aboard Blue Sea Cruise for a front row view of Saturday’s signature race. Blue Sea Cruises is making their Spirit of Kona tour catamaran available fortransporting race participants and spectators.

Board Blue Sea Cruise at the Kailua Pier at 6 a.m. for a 6:30 a.m. departure.For ticket costs and reservations call 808-331-8875 or book online at

2014 Queen’s Race Slate of Events

Thursday, Aug. 28
9 a.m. to noon
Historic Kailua Village Cultural Walk
Lead by noted historian Hannah Kihalani Springer

10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Queen Liliuokalani Cultural Fair
Courtyard by Marriott King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel
Artisans and cultural practitioners lead demonstrations and provide hands-on learning opportunities for a wide variety of traditional Hawaiian crafts. Beautiful crafts and local art on display.

3 p.m.
Hulakai OC4 8-Man Relay
Kailua Pier
Relay race with laps starting and finishing at the Kailua Pier. Great spectator event!

Friday, Aug. 29
4 p.m.
An informal talk with some of outrigger canoe racing’s best and most well-loved paddlers. On the makai lawn at Courtyard by Marriott King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel.

Saturday, Aug. 30
Waa Kaukahi (single hull canoes)
Starting at 7:30 a.m. at the women start the race paddling 18 miles from Kailua Bay to Honaunau. The men then bring it back 18 miles to Kailua Bay.

Award Presentation
Starting at 3:30 p.m. all awards for Saturday races will be given at Kamakahonu Bay.
Everyone is invited to celebrate the 2014 Queen Liliuokalani Long Distance Outrigger Canoe Race champions.

Torchlight Parade
Torchlight parade through Historic Kailua Village starts at 6:30 p.m. Parade winds its way through Historic Kailua Village.

Sunday, Aug. 31
7:30 a.m.
Kailua Pier

Waa Kaulua (double hull canoes)
Men and women crews tie together two single hull canoes to make the double hulls.

OC1 (one person) & OC2 Races (two person)
Men and women paddling in this race follow the same course as the double-hull canoes.

Stand-up Paddleboard Race
Starting in Kailua Bay, the SUP race heads south. Stock boards race 3.5 miles and Unlimited division races 4.5 miles.

Teen (single hull canoes)
QLCR officials are adding three teen divisions (OC-6 – 6 person crews): 16 and under, 18 and under & mixed, 18 and under.

Awards Luau
2 p.m.
Old Airport Events Pavilion
This Hawaiian celebration features traditional foods, music, dance and award presentations for Sunday race winners.

Monday, Sept. 1
9 a.m.
Kailua Pier
Alii Challenge

Based on the formats of Survivor and Amazing Race, Alii Challenge includes a 17.5 mile paddling race and land course tasks that challenge participants on Hawaiian history, games and a lot of fun.

The 2014 Queen Liliuokalani Long Distance Outrigger Canoe Races are sponsored in part by the Hawaii Tourism Authority, County of Hawaii Research and Development, Queen K Tesoro, Steinlager, OluKai, Ocean Paddler Television, King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel, Hulakai and numerous corporate and community donors.

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