Keira D’Amato is a mother of two and a real estate agent in Virginia. Oh, and she’s also a runner, and probably faster than you. On Sunday, she took to the track for a 5K time trial and ran 15:04, which she noted in an Instagram post is more than a minute faster than her PB, a time she ran over a decade ago while still in university. With her new PB, she became just the seventh woman aged 35 or older to run a sub-15:05 5K, joining U.S. Olympian Shalane Flanagan, who ran a 14:59 at 35.
D’Amato’s running resume
D’Amato ran at American University in Washington, D.C., finishing in sixth place at the 2005 NCAA Cross-Country Championships. She also captured several Patriot League conference titles on the track in the 800m up to the 3,000m. More recently, she has moved up in distance to half and full marathons. In 2018, she won the Washington Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon in D.C., and later that year she was the 46th woman to cross the finish line at the Boston Marathon.
In 2019, she ran a 2:34:55 at the Berlin Marathon, which was her PB at the time and good enough for 17th in the women’s race. That run qualified D’Amato for the 2020 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials in Atlanta, where she ran a new PB of 2:34:24 and finished in 15th place. After months of being unable to race since then due to COVID-19, she crushed her 5K time trial on the track.
In her Instagram post, she broke down her splits, which got faster with each mile. She started with 4:53 for the first 1,600m, followed by 4:52 and 4:46 for the third, then she closed the final 200m in 31 seconds. As a whole, she ran a 3:01-per-kilometre pace throughout the time trial.
Top times in 2020
D’Amato’s 5K time is the sixth-fastest time of 2020 based on the World Athletics rankings for the year. Of course, this wasn’t in a real race, so she won’t be added to that official rankings. Plus, the 2020 season has been on hold since March, so we’ve missed three months of races that could have produced faster times and sent D’Amato farther down the overall list, but that shouldn’t take away from her accomplishment.
…and I was bummed that I didn’t get a free race t-shirt. https://t.co/DOCaDuoHIX
— Keira D'Amato (@KeiraDAmato) June 15, 2020
According to the Athletics Canada 5,000m rankings, only five women have run faster than D’Amato did on Sunday, with Gabriela DuBues-Stafford topping the list with a Canadian record of 14:44.12. Again, this list is based on in-competition runs and not individual time trials, but 15:04 is a fast 5K time no matter how you run it.