Soon after Lisa Kerrick’s first triathlon, she wrote down that she wanted to do an XTERRA race.
“I wrote it down on my bucket list,” said Kerrick, who is, in her heart, a marathoner.
When Kerrick’s employer – T S Restaurants – became an XTERRA sponsor, Kerrick was able to achieve her goal.
“T S Restaurants stands for getting employees into an active, healthy lifestyle,” said Kerrick.
Executive Chef Scott McGill took Kerrick under his wing and introduced her to the Kapalua trails.
“I remember the first day I went biking with him,” says Kerrick. “I was so slow he thought I was going backwards.”
Kerrick kept at it and in 2013, she competed in the XTERRA World Championship. Her employer – Hula Grill – sponsored her and she was so thrilled with her experience that she wanted to inspire her fellow co-workers.
“I love everything XTERRA represents,” said Kerrick. “XTERRA just puts the fun back into it and I feel like a kid out there on the trails.”
The following year, Kerrick helped train a running team for Hula Grill and they competed in the XTERRA Kapalua Trail Run, held this year on October 28th, a day before the XTERRA World Championship.
“We had a handful of kitchen staff who had never run a day in their lives, but I took them on the trails and they decided to race,” said Kerrick. “When XTERRA comes around, people get excited.”
Now, the event has grown so much that employees from T S Restaurants created a race within a race dubbed “The T S Restaurants XTERRA Challenge” in which each of the four restaurants – Hula Grill, Duke’s Beach House, Kimo’s and Leilani’s – field a team of 5 runners; and the team with the fastest cumulative time in the 5K take home the coveted T S Trophy.
Last year, Kimo’s captured the perpetual trophy for the third year in a row and have it proudly displayed in their restaurant for all to see. Hula Grill won the titles in 2012 & 2013 and Duke’s Beach House captured the inaugural challenge in 2011.
All four T S Restaurants also sponsor local teachers with complimentary entries into the run.
“It’s all about celebrating the healthy, active, outdoors lifestyle with our employees and our community,” said Tammy Fukagawa, Executive Vice President for T S Restaurants.
Hula Grill, Duke’s Beach House, Kimo’s and Leilani’s are four of Maui’s finest restaurants, and all are located within a short driving distance of Kapalua.
“The unique feeling and setting of West Maui is exhibited at each of these four restaurants, and it is in keeping with what the XTERRA athletes and their families have come to expect when they get to the island of Maui,” XTERRA President Clark said. “Dining at any, or all, of these restaurants can only enhance the experience for our athletes, whether it be eating a pre-race meal or celebrating with a post-race meal.”
This year, look for Kerrick racing with her Hula Grill team or in the Keiki Challenge with her two-year old daughter. When her daughter is in preschool, Kerrick is going to begin marathon training again. For now though, she is happy to pay it forward.
“It’s just so nice to share your sport with other people.”
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