John Kelly is only the 15th person to finish the formidable Barkley Marathons since its creation 24 years ago. Since then he has finished many of the toughest races in the world including the Laverado Ultra Trail and the Tor des Geant. Last year John moved from the U.S. to England and began tackling the amazing EU trails. This spring, before the pandemic, John won the Spine Race, a 268-mile, 39K elevation route following the Pennine Way National Trail in Scotland. As races were cancelled, John decided to try and break the 31-year-old FKT for the Pennine Way.
We talked to John about his
- successful FKT (subsequently bested by friend, Damian Hall 8 days later)
- What is a Bog?
- His ambitious attempt at the Hartley Slam, named after Mike Hartley, the only person to complete all three of the Rounds consecutively.
- Balance: with training, young family and startup business
Follow John’s adventures at RandomForestRunner.com, where he will post a link on how to follow his Grand Round attempt
John is running to raise funds for the Stephen Lawrence Trust, founded to tackle inequality in all forms. Please consider donating.