This past weekend there was a fair bit of excitement at Napili Kai – The 2011 XTERRA World Championship came to our next door neighbor, Kapalua Resort. A total of 675 athletes, including 7-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong participated in the event, which featured a 1.5-kilometer swim, a 30-kilometer mountain bike and a 10-kilometer trail run. A few of Napili Kai’s guests participated in the competition and we asked one, John Felts, to be a guest blogger. His experience is recounted below.
In addition to some of our guests’ participation, our Front Office Manager, Kimberly Brown was at the event to show support for her husband Paul Brown, and her two children Aiden, 7 and Lauren 4. Paul competed in the triathlon and Aiden and Lauren ran in Saturday’s 5K and 1K respectively.  Kimberly proves that there are no degrees of separation between her and her two favorite athletes, her husband and Lance Armstrong. Kimberly is the one wearing the Napili Kai logo shirt – can you guess which one is her husband and which is Lance Armstrong?

 October 23, 2011 XTERRA World Championship By John Felts
The XTERRA World Championship Triathlon was held today in West Maui. I was lucky enough to be one of the 675 athletes who got to enjoy the scenery and wonderfully organized (and supported race).  The swim started at 9am at
Fleming beach, with two (2) loops (there was a short run along the beach in between each swim lap).  The transition area (where you transition from the swim to bike and bike to run) was located on the lawn above Fleming Beach. The bike headed straight up into the old Village Golf Course – which has been reclaimed by nature. Anyone out there today would never have know that we were on a golf course if we hadn’t been told by the organizers, although the hundreds of golf balls might have given it away! The bike course climbed up, and Up and UP then down, Down and DOWN, then up, Up and UP then…. well you get the idea. At one point we reached the top of the Kapalua Zip line, before plummeting down towards Kahana. We then zig-zagged back to Fleming Beach. The ride was hot, dusty and FUN! After transitioning to running shoes, we headed …. you got it…. up, Up and UP a little down and then to the top before “slaloming” back towards Fleming beach, which we ran along (IN THE DEEP SAND), before finishing on an uphill. 

Paul Brown finishing XTERRA 2011 with children Aiden and Lauren waiting to hi-five Dad

This race is very tough, but really a one of a kind experience.
The best part of the day, was getting back to Napili Bay and the Napili Kai Beach Resort. After removing the red dirt in the shower (I thought I actually had gotten a really nice tan until I stepped out of the shower). Sitting down at the Whale Watchers Bar for some pupus at the Sea House Restaurant’s Happy Hour (2-5:30) which was actually lunch (for me), after racing all day, was the icing on the cake of a perfect West Maui day. Their renowned Poke Nachos, Coconut Shrimp and Kalua Pork Tacos were the best. I am going to head back to the restaurant tonight to try a few more appetizers and a well deserved Mai Tai!

October 22, 2011 Run By John Felts
What an incredible setting in West Maui for the XTERRA 5K and 10K trail runs. Since I will be competing tomorrow in the XTERRA World Championship Triathlon, I opted for the 5K run which follows the same course as the 10K (this is the same course as the run in tomorrow triathlon), but turns around 1/2 way up the mountain. And UP did we go! A lot of the trail was on the Kapalua Trail system, which are accessible near Fleming Beach. We were blessed with a nice wind, although it was still very hot. The race wound up into the hills, then plummeted down to Fleming, through the creek bed (behind the parking lot) and out onto the DEEP SAND, before exiting the beach and running to the top of the hill at the Ritz Carlton. For anyone who enjoys trail running, this is a must, although I would suggest staying at the Napili Kai Beach Resort. I enjoyed the run (and did pretty good – 18th overall as well as a first in my age group), but was very happy to get back to Napili Bay and the resort. I cooled down with a wonderful swim out into Napili Bay (saw 2 turtles) and am now relaxing on the beach enjoying the cool breeze and incredible hospitality of the hotel staff!

Thank you John for your contribution to our blog. Congratulations to all competitors in this exciting event. Special thanks to Kimberly for providing the photos on this blog. We’d like to end with a wonderful photo of the Brown family with Lance Armstrong.



  1. Loved the blog by John, great idea!!!!

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