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303Endurance Podcast

Oct 1, 2022

Welcome to Episode #355 of the 303 Endurance Podcast and our 2022 Kona Countdown Special!

You are listening to your weekly connection to coaches, experts, and pro athletes to help you reach your endurance goals. We're your hosts coach Rich Soares and 303 Chief Editor, Bill Plock. Thanks for joining us for another week of endurance interviews and discussion.


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In Today's Show

  • Endurance News
    • Eliud Kipchoge Breaks Marathon WORLD RECORD In Berlin
    • Kona Countdown; Tri Rating 2022 Kona Report
    • What the locals think about a 2-day Kona
    • Sea Otter Europe draws nearly 60’000 for 6th edition
  • What's new in the 303
    • Endurance Runner Robbie Balenger Crushes Colorado in New Documentary Film
  • Video of the Week
    • Eliud Kipchoge Breaks Marathon WORLD RECORD In Berlin, Runs 2:01:09


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Endurance News:

Eliud Kipchoge Breaks Marathon WORLD RECORD In Berlin



Kenya’s Eliud Kipchoge broke his own world record, lowering the mark to 2:01:09, as he powered to victory at the Berlin Marathon on Sunday.


Shaving 30 seconds off the record he set at the same event four years ago, Kipchoge set a pace that no one could match over the entire 26.2 miles and secured his 15th career marathon win out of just 17 starts.


Ethiopia’s Andamlak Belihu and defending champion Guye Adola stayed with the 37-year-old for the first half of the race but dropped away as Kipchoge pressed on for victory and eventually crossed the finish line opposite the Brandenburg Gate alone.


Double Olympic champion Kipchoge became the first athlete to run a marathon distance in under two hours in Vienna in 2019 but this was not recognized as an official world record since it was set with a team of rotating pacemakers and not in open competition.


For this official record, Kipchoge started fast, setting a 10km time split of just 28min 23sec and reaching the halfway mark in under an hour.


Adola matched him step for step throughout the opening ten kilometers but only Belihu could remain with Kipchoge as the race crossed halfway.


After 25km, Kipchoge began to pull away from Belihu too, and though his blistering pace slowed slightly, he remained comfortably ahead of the world record all the way to the line.


His compatriot Mark Korir finished more than four minutes afterwards, in 2:05:58, to take second place while Ethiopia’s Tadu Abate completed the podium with a time of 2:06:28.


In the women’s race, Ethiopia’s Tigist Assefa set a course record and took the win in 2:15:37, the third fastest time in history and 18 minutes faster than her previous personal best.


Starting just her second marathon after making the switch from the 800m, Assefa ran 1:08:13 to remain with the pack for the first half of the race, before she recorded a negative split of 1:07:25 to distance the rest of the field.


Rosemary Wanjiru of Kenya finished second with a time of 2:18:00, while Ethiopia’s Tigist Abayechew finished three seconds later in third place.



Kona Countdown:

Past Records









Saturday, October 01, 2022

  • Start End Event Location
  • 6.30am 10.00am VinFast IRONMAN® World Championship Kailua Pier
  •  Information Booth
  • 7.30am Kona Town Fun Run Begins at Hale Hālāwai – Ali`i Drive
  • 9.00am 4.00pm `Ohana Info Center/Volunteer Station/ KBH Conference Room 6
  •  Lost and Found

Sunday, October 02, 2022

  • Start End Event Location
  • 5.30am 6.45am Ho`ala (Rise to the Occasion) KBH - Honu’s Lawn
  •  Training Swim, Packet Pick-up
  •  Onsite registration is not available.
  • 6.30am 11.00am VinFast IRONMAN® World Championship Kailua Pier
  •  Information Booth
  • 7.00am Ho`ala IRONMAN® Training Swim -2.4 miles Kailua Bay Swim Entrance
  • 9.00am 4.00pm Athlete Check-in KBH Ballrooms 2, 3, 4
  • 9.00am 4.00pm `Ohana Info Center/Volunteer Station/ KBH Conference Room 6
  •  Lost and Found
  • 1.00pm 3.30pm IRONKIDS® Keiki Dip-n-Dash Registration KBH Canoe Landing
  • 4.00pm IRONKIDS® Keiki Dip-n-Dash Ka`ahumanu Place
  • 6.00pm 8.00pm Heroes of Hawai`i (Hawaiian Cultural Legacy) KBH Lu`au Grounds

Monday, October 03, 2022

  • 3.00pm Parade of Nations (athletes gather at 2pm) KBH to Hale Hālāwai, Ali`i Drive

Tuesday, October 04, 2022

  • 6.00pm E Komo Mai (Welcome) Banquet KBH Parking Lot
  • 8.00pm Race Briefing -English KBH Parking Lot

Wednesday, October 05, 2022

  • 9.00am 6.00pm Final Day Athlete Check-in KBH Ballrooms 2, 3, 4
  • 11.30am 6.00pm Bike/Helmet/Gear Check-in Bike Compound Area
  •  for Athletes racing Thursday ONLY Kailua Pier

Thursday, October 06, 2022 - RACE DAY

  • 4.30am 6.15am Personal Needs Drop/Transition Opens Kailua Pier
  • 5.00am 12.30am `Ohana Info Center/Volunteer Station/ KBH Conference Room 6
  •  Lost and Found
  • 5.30am 1.30am Media Center KBH Ballroom 1, 2, 3
  • 6.25am Race Start - Professional Women Kailua Pier
  • 6.27am Race Start - PC/HC Athletes Kailua Pier
  • 6.30am Wave Start - Women 30-34 Kailua Pier
  • 6.35am Wave Start - Women 35-39 Kailua Pier
  • 6.40am Wave Start - Women 40-44 Kailua Pier
  • 6.45am Wave Start - Women 18-29 Kailua Pier
  • 6.50am Wave Start - Women 45-49 Kailua Pier
  • 6.55am Wave Start - Women 50-54 Kailua Pier
  • 7.00am Wave Start - Women 55+ Kailua Pier
  • 7.25am Wave Start - Men 65+ Kailua Pier
  • 7.30am Wave Start - Men 60-64 Kailua Pier
  • 7.35am Wave Start - Men 50-54 Kailua Pier
  • 7.40am Wave Start - Men 25-29 Kailua Pier
  • 9.00am 1.00pm Accreditation Office KBH Monarchy Room
  • 7.00pm 1.00am Bike & Gear Pick-up Kailua Pier

 Friday, October 07, 2022

  • 11.30am 6.00pm Bike/Helmet/Gear Check-in Bike Compound Area

 Kailua Pier


Saturday, October 08, 2022

  • 4.30am 6.15am Personal Needs Drop/Transition Opens Kailua Pier
  • 5.00am 12.30am `Ohana Info Center/Volunteer Station/ KBH Conference Room 6
  •  Lost and Found
  • 5.30am 1.30am Media Center KBH Ballroom 1, 2, 3
  • 6.25am Race Start - Professional Men Kailua Pier
  • 6.40am Wave Start -Men 35-39 Kailua Pier
  • 6.50am Wave Start -Men 30-34 Kailua Pier
  • 7.05am Wave Start - Men 40-44 Kailua Pier
  • 7.20am Wave Start - Men 45-49 Kailua Pier
  • 7.35am Wave Start - Men 55-59 Kailua Pier
  • 7.40am Wave Start - Men 18-24 Kailua Pier
  • 7.00pm 1.00am Bike & Gear Pick-up Kailua Pier
  •  (no earlier than 7.00pm and no later than 1.00am)


Kona Locals Ask Ironman Visitors for Respect

SEPTEMBER 27, 2022


In less than two weeks, the Ironman World Championship will return to the Big Island in a big way – with a two-day format to accommodate the backlog of athletes who qualified for the race in 2020, 2021, and 2022. But not everyone is happy about the return of the race and its expansion – specifically, the people who call Kona home.


“We have a lot of people who are excited because they love Ironman, but also a lot of people who do their best to avoid the race,” says Skye Ombac, a lifelong Kona resident and triathlete who will be racing in this year’s event. “This year, it just feels twice as difficult to coexist with the two-day format and twice the amount of athletes.”


The relationship between Kona and Ironman is a complicated one. Certainly, tourism is a large part of the island’s economy, and during the COVID pandemic, a decline in travel meant a loss for most residents. Many businesses closed, and hotels and restaurants operated at a fraction of their capacity. When local authorities issued shutdown orders, Hawaii unemployment levels rose to those not seen since the Great Depression, topping out at 25 percent. But even though tourism has resumed, the island still hasn’t fully recovered. Many restaurants and hotels are understaffed, as are grocery stores and gas stations.


But that doesn’t necessarily mean locals are excited about the return of tourism, either. According to a recent state-commissioned survey, 67% of Hawaii residents agreed that their island is “being run for tourists at the expense of local people,” and only 39% agreed tourism is “mostly positive.” Resident dissatisfaction with tourists is multifaceted: The overwhelming majority (92%) of locals felt visitors were not educated enough on protecting Hawaii’s natural environment and local resources; other factors include the impact of the vacation rental industry and ignorance of the residents’ quality of life. Add the extra hassles that come with hosting a two-day Ironman event, and these feelings become even stronger.


RELATED: How Is Ironman Going to Pull off Two Days of Racing in Kona?


Triathletes on a training ride for the Ironman World Champs in Kona

Triathletes train on the Queen K Highway ahead of the race. (Photo: Oliver Baker)

Ironman: Not your average tourist

Though Ironman has gained support from local officials and many residents, this support is not unanimous, and it’s certainly not without condition. Ironman tourists aren’t your typical island visitors, who tend to stick to their timeshares and carefully-managed tours; they take over a host city completely, riding their bikes on the busiest roads, taking bathroom breaks on the side of sacred trails, and buying up all the bananas and bottled water at the grocery store.


On Nextdoor, a neighborhood-based social media app, the debate between local residents ping-pongs between cheering the $30 million economic impact of the race and wondering if it’s really worth the cost. Some posters shared that the road closures during two days of racing also forced their businesses to close, resulting in a loss of two days’ worth of income. Others expressed concern for the environmental impact of the race, from the large amounts of trash left on the road by athletes to the use of non-reef safe sunscreens when swimming in the ocean.


“This event has far outgrown the venue,” wrote one Nextdoor poster. “I respect the idea of Ironman and the individual athlete, but this has gotten out of hand. It is time for a new, larger venue to be found for these folks to do their thing.”


“The aloha we all had for this event has left the island,” wrote another. “Time for a change.”


“People get annoyed with cyclists taking up lanes on the road, riding on roads that are not bike friendly, not stopping at stop signs, leaving trash on the side of the road, bringing banned sunscreens to the island,” says Sierra Ponthier, a Kona resident and triathlete. “They see Ironman triathletes as selfish and just coming here to use the island for themselves while inconveniencing locals who need to get to work, to school, to family.  This one hurts to hear, because as a triathlete myself, I know not all triathletes are like this, but it’s a common perception of residents here.”


“Kona is a small community, and we will have a difficult time handling twice as many athletes,” Ombac says. “There are 2,500 extra athletes coming in this year compared to a normal Ironman year. We are still recovering from COVID, businesses are understaffed and don’t have the resources to handle the influx of people. Because we are racing on a Thursday, a work day, many business will be losing a ton of money and many community members are unable to get to work. This is creating a huge headache for many people.”


Sea Otter Europe draws nearly 60’000 for 6th edition

Tuesday, 27 September 2022

Simon Cox

The most popular Sea Otter Europe ever, with a record attendance for public and exhibitors, cements its reputation as the meeting point between the Cycling Industry and cycling enthusiasts.


Nearly 60,000 visitors filled the festival site for 3 intense days of racing, product presentations, and demo-bike testing. If you want to ride a demo bike there’s surely no better place, be that for MTB, Road, or Gravel bikes. This year also so a growth in ‘cycling as transport’ products on display, and available to test ride.


The expansion of the expo area has made it possible to comfortably cope with the 30% growth of exhibitor brands, with a total of 350 international companies that have displayed their products at more than 220 stands of bicycles, electric bikes, accessories and technology applied to cycling.


The response to the competitive calendar was also a strong one, with more than 4,000 cyclists taking part in the fifteen races that were organised, for amateurs and for world champions, Olympic medallists and elite athletes, both male and female, in all kinds of cycling.


Once again, the demo-bike opportunity proved to be one of the most attractive elements of Sea Otter Europe. 30 participating brands had all the models on offer, with more than 3,000 trips to the demo-bike circuits designed specifically for this purpose. New urban routes created this year also made it possible to experience a variety of family and urban bikes, ridden around the festival, and in the streets of the centre of Girona.


With the conclusion of the most popular edition of this cycling festival to date, the team at Sea Otter Europe has already begun work on the next one, to be held again in Girona and the Costa Brava from 22 to 24 September 2023.


What's New in the 303:

Endurance Runner Robbie Balenger Crushes Colorado in New Documentary Film

Audacious Media LLC

Jun 09, 2022, 08:47 ET


PONCHA SPRINGS, Colo., June 9, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, Audacious Media launches its debut film, The Colorado Crush, a cinematic chronicle of a summer spent tackling every major bucket list endurance feat in the state.

The film follows professional runner Robbie Balenger during the Summer of 2021 as he sets off to complete a challenge he calls "The Colorado Crush": the 485-mile Colorado Trail, all Colorado peaks over 14,000 feet, and the notorious Leadville Trail Series. These three feats – each lifetime achievements of their own - push Robbie to his mental and physical limits over an epic 63 day journey.


Along the way, Robbie grapples with unforgiving terrain, climate change, and an unresolved concept of masculinity. The adventure builds steadily as he approaches the culmination of The Colorado Crush, the Leadville 100.


"I'm incredibly proud to release this film and alongside it a new platform for endurance enthusiasts: The Audacious Report," said Reece Robinson, co-founder of Audacious Media. "The Audacious Report will be a collection of films, articles, and podcasts covering the boldest athletes in the world and their feats of endurance."


The film is free to watch on Youtube at


For media inquiries, please contact:

Reece Robinson

Co-Founder and Production Manager, Audacious Media

Phone - 917-513-7964

Email –


Upcoming Multisport Events in Colorado (

Upcoming Classic Runs in Colorado (


Video of the week:

Eliud Kipchoge Breaks Marathon WORLD RECORD In Berlin, Runs 2:01:09! || RACE VIDEO



Thanks again for listening in this week.  Please be sure to follow us @303endurance and of course go to iTunes and give us a rating and a comment.  We'd really appreciate it!

Stay tuned, train informed, and enjoy the endurance journey!