Honolulu Runners Registered For Boston – Despite Evidence of Course Cutting


“The Honolulu Marathon is an easy course to turn around on,” said Dr. Jim Barahal, Honolulu Marathon CEO and founder. “The technology that is involved with running and these large marathons makes it nearly impossible to really cheat. You’re going to get caught.”
–       Several Honolulu Runners Accused of Cheating – Hawaii News Now


Following the 2016 Honolulu Marathon, I wrote an article regarding several instances of apparent course cutting.

Dr. Barahal made it clear that he is not a fan of mine or marathoninvestigation.com.

“Any decision we make or don’t make has absolutely nothing to do with that website. We have no relationship with that website. We have no connection with that website and no communication with that website. We don’t support or condone that website, or use of photos or anything he does in any way.”
“It’s not an official website from some sports governing body,” Barahal said. “It seems to be one guy out there who decided this is what he’s going to do, to monitor seemingly all marathons. But it’s by no means an official website. It has no official standings, it’s not part of the sport or governing body of the sport.

As I pointed out in my article – CHEATING IS BEING TOLERATED AT HONOLULU MARATHON – MY RESPONSE TO RACE OFFICIALS, despite Barahal’s comments, they had only disqualified the runners that were specifically mentioned in my article. I quickly found a runner in the prior year’s results that missed splits. The runner’s time for a 20 mile stretch calculates to a sub 3 minute mile.


Honolulu Course Cutters Registered for Boston

At least two runners with very suspicious results have registered for Boston using The Honolulu Marathon as their qualifier. One of them is highlighted below.




Below is a portion of an email I sent to the race in December regarding the above runner:

I received a couple emails regarding runners that seemingly cut the course and have Boston Qualifying Times. Can you please review these results?


She was on 10:13/mile pace through 21km.
From 21-35 KM it took her 49:44 – a 5:43 per mile pace.

I never received a response. She was never removed from the results. Now she is registered for Boston.

The technology that is involved with running and these large marathons makes it nearly impossible to really cheat. You’re going to get caught.




The technology is in place. But the race is not utilizing it. In addition they seemingly ignore when cheating is brought to their attention.

When a race takes the side of cheaters, and welcomes those that are caught to participate future races, they are putting their bottom line ahead of the integrity of the sport. As it stands right now, this woman (and others) are entered into Boston at the expense of runners that legitimately deserve to be in Boston on April 16th.

The BAA has been notified of the runner above as well as one additional runner with highly suspicious splits that used The Honolulu Marathon as their qualifier.

There are additional runners from other races that have been reported to both their qualifying races and the B.A.A. I will report on them later in the week.

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  1. I can’t fiqure why Dr. Barahal would be so defensive. Cheaters cheapen the reputation of all sporting events. I doubt that his criticisms will deter Derek, though. Keep up the great work

  2. There are many third-party organizations in sports that help regulate and manage the integrity of the sport they support. I don’t think that the Boston marathon at this time has an official third-party organization that helps. However, with the highly competitive nature of the event, as well as the qualifying marathons that stand to profit from it, it is obvious that there is a need for third-party regulation. The BAA cannot do it all themselves. Thank you marathoninvestigation.com for stepping in to help keep the integrity of the event.

  3. Isn’t it about time that Boston started to take a bit more responsibility for ensuring that only legitimate times made it in to their race.
    Really can’t be hard for them to have the requirement that ANY missed mats means you can not use that race for a qualifying time.
    There may be a few people who legitimately lose out because of mat issues but then it puts to focus on races who are Boston qualifying races to ensure they have the proper set up.

  4. The comments of the race CEO are disappointing. The lack of action by the race CEO is upsetting.

    Why would he allow such obvious cheating without taking action? There are far too many race directors/owners who are in this sport purely for the money. Regardless, another important and appreciated story from Marathon Investigation. Well done.

    • Would be nice if boston didn’t allow BQ qualified com races who blatantly allow cheating. Perhaps consequences are needed to stop this

  5. Is it just me or by the tone of the RD’s comments does this sound like a man who knows he has a problem, doesn’t know what to do about it and is really defensive by someone calling it out?

    • But “doing something about it” is so effing easy – look at the cheat mat data, and throw out anyone who is an obvious cheater.

      It’s not rocket science – it would take about an hour to do examine everyone in the race. Hell, I spent five minutes looking at the splits and easily identified a bib mule (the person who didn’t run the race isn’t registered for Boston….yet).

  6. The RD may not have said anything now and may be ignoring emails, but Marathon Investigation is much more high profile now than it used to be. A lot of people follow it and know about this information. Once they’re truly outed, they’ll respond because they’re not going to want the negative rap.

  7. Wow that guy is weird. View many times Did he say that website lol. Really disturbing he doesn’t care about blatant cheating. Cheaters don’t make the race look bad. But his response to it does

  8. And it looks like she is listed as still on the 2018 Boston Marathon Entry List – Will the BAA investigate the time still and give to someone who had a legitimate qualifying time?

  9. Sounds like RD just has an enormous ego and interprets your “interference” as criticism. So rather than accept the free help, he just tries to prop himself up by making digs at you and your site.

  10. I just learned that a friend who ran a BQ time missed the cutoff by 18 seconds. The fact that cheats got in when he didn’t really pisses me off.

  11. Runners simply have to vote with their feet when it’s obvious that cheating is not being addressed by a race director. It’s especially galling when common sense evidence (ie sub- 3 minute miles) is flatly ignored.

  12. Yeah… “I did not have relations with that website.” Hmm, something like that was said once before. Rather defensive, Dr. Barahal? It’s awfully frustrating to honest runners to see this level of cheating, with the RD seemingly unwilling to address obvious cheats. (Without mentioning the Mexico fiasco, which is a whole different ball of wax.)

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