Keira D’Amato, the former U.S. record-holder in the half marathon and marathon, has ended her long-standing coaching relationship with Scott Raczko to join Ed Eyestone’s elite training group in Provo, Utah.

Photo:© Steph Chambers/Getty

D’Amato and her family have relocated to Utah for the summer. While she will stay there through her upcoming, yet-to-be-announced fall marathon, her husband, Anthony D’Amato, and their two children will return to Richmond, Virginia, in August for the start of the school year.

Earlier this year, the Olympic Marathon Trials were D’Amato’s primary focus. Despite being a favorite, she withdrew at mile 20, attributing her struggle to insufficient preparation for the Orlando heat. This prompted her to reassess her training methods.

D’Amato, approaching her 40th birthday in October, sought new challenges by training at higher altitudes. Provo, at an elevation of 4,500 feet, along with Park City at 7,000 feet, provides the altitude training she desired. She aimed to gain a fresh perspective and learn from a new coach. Though currently the only woman in Eyestone’s group, she looks forward to a supportive team environment, with Olympians Karissa Schweizer and Courtney Wayment reaching out for training runs and coach Diljeet Taylor inviting her family to dinner.

Ed Eyestone, the head track and field coach at Brigham Young University, has an impressive record. He coached marathoners Conner Mantz and Clayton Young to first and second place at the Trials in Orlando. Steeplechaser Kenneth Rooks won his event at the U.S. track trials, and James Corrigan, after initially falling short, achieved the Olympic standard in Philadelphia thanks to an additional race Eyestone arranged.

Ed Eyestone/ Photo:© Deseret News

D’Amato and Eyestone have interacted while working on the Chicago Marathon broadcast over the past two years and at the World Championships in Budapest, where D’Amato placed 17th in the marathon.

Under Raczko’s guidance, D’Amato achieved significant milestones, including a 10th place finish in the 10,000 meters at the track trials in Eugene, Oregon. Moving forward, she plans to concentrate on road races.

At 39, D’Amato acknowledges the limited duration of her athletic career but remains confident in her potential. “I know this isn’t going to last forever,” she said. “But I don’t think I’m anywhere close to the end of my best performances. I still believe I can achieve my best marathon, half marathon, and 10K times. My best is yet to come.”

She also sees the possibility of extended careers in running, inspired by athletes like Sara Hall and Des Linden. “As a running community, we’re still learning about what’s possible as we age,” she noted. “The more we push these boundaries, the more normal it will become to have a career into your 40s.”

Under Raczko, D’Amato set the American marathon record in 2022 with a time of 2:19:12 at the Houston Marathon and the American half marathon record in 2023 with a time of 1:06:39. Although these records have since been broken, she remains the second-fastest American in both events.

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D’Amato expressed deep gratitude for Raczko’s support and guidance. “I am incredibly appreciative of the relationship Scott and I have and will continue to have,” she said. “We’ve accomplished amazing things together, and I’m grateful for all he has given and taught me.”

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