The Malia is a 6-man Hawaiian racing canoe hewn from a single koa log in Kailua-Kona on the island of Hawaii in 1933. Malia is also part of the National Historic Register of Historic Places. Her builder, James Takeo Yamasaki, designed her expressly for racing, one of the favorite sports of Hawaiian Royalty, dating back to King Kamehameha V (1863-1872). When launched she measured 39′-2″, but over time was modified twice. In 1950 she was lengthened to 39′-6″, and in 1973 she was lengthened to her present racing measure of 40′-1″.
Between 1952 and 1954 the Malia won fourteen straight Senior Men’s Races, and she has proven a dominant factor in canoe racing since. From the beginning of the annual Molokai-O‘ahu race in 1952, the Waikiki Surf Club, paddling the Malia, won first place a total of twelve times, six of which were consecutive, (’53, ’55, ‘58-’63, ’66, ’69, ’72 and ‘73). No other single canoe has ever won as often or for such a long continuous stretch. The Malia’s contribution to canoe racing goes well beyond her own accomplishments. In 1959, the first fiberglass mold was made.