The Virgin Money London Marathon 2016 is almost here, and this year the event promises to be bigger and better than ever.
A record 247,069 people entered the ballot this year, even though there were only about 50,000 seats available, with organizers expecting just 38,000 to make it to the starting line.
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If you were one of the lucky ones who snatched a place – or you are going along to spectate – here’s our handy guide on everything you need to know about dates, start times, runners to watch and the route.
- 1 when is the 2016 london marathon?
- 2 what time does the london marathon start?
- 3 where is the london marathon?
- 4 where to watch the race
- 5 can I follow a runner during the race?
- 6 will the queen be there?
- 7 how long is the london marathon?
- 8 runners to watch during the race
- 9 what happens after the race?
- 10 history of the london marathon
- 11 fundraiser for the london marathon
when is the 2016 london marathon?
the 36th london marathon will take place on Sunday 24 April
what time does the london marathon start?
There are four different start times for the London Marathon this year: 8:55am. m., 9:00 a.m. m., 9:15 a.m. m. and 10:00 a.m. m.
Wheelchair competitors will depart at 8:55 a.m. m., followed by the Paralympic runners who will compete in the ipc athletics marathon world cup at 9 a.m. m..
At 9:15 the women’s elite runners will start and at 10:00 the men’s elite runners, anyone competing in the British Championships in Athletics and England and thousands of amateur runners. get going.
Competitors are advised to be at the start line at least one hour before their race begins to allow time to load the baggage trucks, warm up and find their starting corral.
You must bring your registration letter and a valid photo ID (ie passport or driver’s license) so they can collect your registration number. Registration is open from Wednesday, April 20, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. m. to 8 p.m. m. through Saturday, April 23 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. m. to 5 p.m. m. at the london marathon display.
where is the london marathon?
errr london. ok ok seriously the london marathon starts at blackheath, southeast of london, passing through woolwich, greenwich, isle of dogs, the tower of london and london bridge before finishing in the mall past buckingham palace.
Depending on whether you are assigned a blue, green, or red starting position, you must head to blackheath station (blue), maze hill (red and green), or greenwich station (red). all starting positions are within a 15-20 minute walk from the stations and marshals will guide you to the proper position.
here are some route maps, which can be downloaded and printed here.
where to watch the race
Most roads will be closed on the day of the London Marathon, so you’ll need to use public transport to get to your chosen spectator spot.
it gets very crowded so if you want to avoid the big crowds don’t look anywhere in downtown greenwich town and cutty sark or near tower bridge, the mall and anywhere from mile marker 24 onwards to the end.
The best spots, as recommended by the race organizers, are along Tooley Street to Tower Bridge Road at mile 12, over London Bridge where the race will go under or over at Canary Wharf. and the isle of dogs you can see corridors between miles 14 to 21 and surray docks by mile nine. don’t bother trying to watch from the heron quays roundabout near the city pride pub, because there won’t be any runners passing near it this year. check the tfl.co.uk website for travel options.
You can also buy a ticket for an mbna thames clipper river bus which runs every 20 minutes to and from 15 central london piers. with a river roamer ticket you can hop on and off all day long whenever you want. more information here.
The London Marathon will be broadcast live on BBC TV, as well as BBC Radio 5 and BBC Radio London.
can I follow a runner during the race?
yeah, and it’s pretty impressive. all you have to do is go to the london marathon 2016 home page here and search for your runner by last name or number and it will tell you exactly where he is.
You can also track them with an app on your iPhone, which you can download here. The app will be ready to use on race day and will update automatically when your runner crosses the start line and will update at every 5K time interval thereafter. the app will also predict where your runner should be on the course based on their pace. obviously you will need your runner’s race number to use the app.
will the queen be there?
The queen will cheer people across the finish line in a red, white and blue queenmobile. hahaha, just kidding, actually he won’t, but he could be watching tv in private from his easy chair at windsor castle, where he will be this weekend, celebrating his 90th birthday (that’s april 21).
how long is the london marathon?
The London Marathon is 26.2 miles long (come on, it’s a marathon), but in terms of how long the event will last, it should take competitors a maximum of seven or eight hours to complete the course.
Pacemakers will be handed out that day to keep track of how far each mile takes you. as a guide, more or less:
that means everything will end around 6:00 p.m. m. before dark.
runners to watch during the race
In the men’s race, this year it’s all about london marathon champions eliud kipchoge and wilson kipsang, both from kenya. Kipsang won the event in 2014 but was overtaken at the finish line last year after Kipchoge overtook him and won by just five seconds. Also worth watching is Dennis Kimetto, a Kenyan who placed third last year.
In the women’s race, watch out for Ethiopian runner Tigist Tufa, who won the race last year.
There are some celebrities involved, like Natalie Dormer from Game of Thrones, Chris Evans from Top Gear, Baasit Siddiqui from Googlebox, and CJ de Mooi from Eggheads.
Major fundraisers are also worth watching, such as Nick Mahoney, who has already raised £41,600 for Diabetes UK, and Helen Wright, who has raised nearly £32,000 for the Neuro Foundation.
what happens after the race?
Just like the start of the race, the finish is basically hell on earth. Not only will runners have a hard time getting to their feet after traversing the 26.2-mile course, but there will also be crowds of people making their way.
You can’t park near the finish line due to road closures, so your only option is public transport. Please note that runners may take up to 40 minutes to collect their medals, finisher bag and kitbag.
There will be a meeting area at the Horse Guards Parade where literate meeting areas have been established.
note: due to the high density of people, the signal of mobile phones is often poor, so do not rely on mobiles to organize your meeting.
history of the london marathon
The original idea for one of Britain’s biggest sporting and charity events was, believe it or not, hatched in a pub.
two former olympic athletes, chris brasher and john disley, both steeplechase runners, were having a pint at dysart arms, southwest london, in 1978 with some friends when they heard about the new city marathon york.
they traveled to new york for the following year’s race, ultimately deciding that a similar event would also appeal to the british public.
The first London Marathon was held in 1981, and it seems your guess was correct because 7,000 runners turned up to compete. that figure has been growing ever since.
chris died in february 2003 at the age of 74 and john died in february of this year at the age of 87.
fundraiser for the london marathon
To donate or see how you can help, visit the london marathon runners page here. More than £50 million are raised each year, making it the largest one-day charity event in Britain and the world.
Since the event began, more than £716 million has been raised.
See also: 2016 Oregon River Run 5K