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Hawaiian ultrarunner sets 220K FKT around island of Oahu

In his first run farther than 100 miles, Jeremy Killeen beat the Oahu Circumnavigation record by almost four hours

Photo by: Instagram/jeremykilleen

Jeremy Killeen of Honolulu, Hawaii, is new to ultrarunning, but he seems to have a knack for it. Although Killeen, a 25-year-old U.S. Navy petty officer and musician, only ran his first ultramarathon in April, he recently completed a 220K route around the Hawaiian island of Oahu (where Honolulu is located). He finished the run in 32 hours, 55 minutes, smashing the fastest known time (FKT) on the route — named the Oahu Circumnavigation — by almost four hours. 

Circumnavigating Oahu 

As noted on fastestknowntime.com, the Oahu Circumnavigation is more often run as a relay rather than a solo adventure. While the Hawaiian islands have many trails for hikes and runs, this route sticks to the roads for the entire 220K, tracing Oahu’s coastline around the entire island. To add to the difficulty, anyone attempting this FKT must climb more than 1,500m throughout the run. This is by no means extraordinary elevation gain, and many FKTs feature far more climbing, but close to a mile of ascent is no joke, and that certainly takes its toll on runners. Add in the heat (it was 25 C with 81 per cent humidity when Killeen ran) and you’ve got an extremely difficult challenge. 

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Rookie ultrarunner

Killeen beat fellow Honolulu resident Erik Hauptmann‘s FKT of 36 hours, 31 minutes from February 2019. He averaged about nine minutes per kilometre throughout the run. This feat is impressive enough, but Killeen’s inexperience with ultra distances adds to the accomplishment. As he said in an Instagram post in April, he ran his first half-marathon in 2019, after which he told himself, “I am never doing that again.” He of course broke that promise to himself, and ran even farther in his next race, which was a virtual 50K in April. 

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Since then, he has been climbing up in distance, and his first crack at 100 miles was the Oahu Circumnavigation (which added another 60K to that milestone for good measure). Killeen is still so new to this sport, and he already has an enormous FKT to his name, something he says he “would have thought was impossible” a year ago. He hasn’t hinted at his next goal, but there are a number of other established FKTs on Oahu and Hawaii’s other islands, so this probably won’t be Killeen’s last route record. 

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