Virgin London Marathon

Virgin London Marathon is one of the biggest running events in the world and is one of the five top world marathons that make up the World Marathon Majors. The first London Marathon took place in 1981. The race was earlier known as the Flora London Marathon, and later was renamed as the Virgin London Marathon. A total of 817,890 runners have completed the London Marathon till date. The event has raised over £450 million for charity and holds the Guinness world record as the largest annual fund raising event in the world.

The Virgin London Marathon is expecting over 36,000 participants in the coming year. There are participants from London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic athletics medallists who will be racing over the famous course from Blackheath to The Mall, including four London 2012 marathon champions.

Race Date
Apr 23, 2017
Race Location
London, UK
Event Type
Start Times

Wheelchair : 9:00 am
Women: 9:20 am
Men: 10:10 am

No. Runners
Race Website
View Results
Social Media
Race Registration

You can register on the official website of Virgin London Marathon. The registrations for 2015 opens tentatively in April ‘ 15 for entries towards a ballot, and the results are out in October ’15.

The entry system for the 2016 Virgin Money London Marathon will open online at on Monday 4 May 2015.

Course / Route Map

The course starts in Blackheath, heads towards east through Charlton and Woolwich for three miles, then turns west and passes the Cutty Sark in Greenwich after six to seven miles. It crosses the River Thames at Tower Bridge and then loops around the east end of London, past Canary Wharf in Docklands, before heading west again along the Highway and the Embankment to Parliament Square, Birdcage Walk and the final corner in front of Buckingham Palace. The Virgin London Marathon course is flat and fast.

Check out the official interactive London Marathon route map.

Race Profile / Elevation Map

As for the elevation profile, London is pretty flat with the steepest climb being up the slope onto Tower Bridge.

Time Limits & Cutoffs
  • Only those who finish the race within the time limit of 8 hours will get finisher’s medal and T-shirt.
  • The race is timed using IPICO timing tag which should be attached to your shoe before the start of the race.
Course Records

Men: Emmanuel Mutai (KEN) 2:04:40 (2011)
Women: Paula Radcliffe (UK) 2:15:25 (2003)

Prize Money & Awards
  • London is one of the top six world marathons that form the World Marathon Majors competition with a $1 million prize purse.
  • Men & Women: 1st – $55,000, 2nd – $30,000, 3rd – $22,500, 4th – $15,000, 5th – $10,000.
T-Shirts, Medals, Certificates

All the finishers will be given medals and T-shirts.

Water Stops & Refreshments
  • There are water stations every mile from 3 miles onwards. Lucozade Sport in Orange available in 380ml bottles at five drinks stations at Mile 5, 10, 15, 19, and 23.
  • Lucozade Sport Carbo Gels are available at Miles 14 and 21.5.
  • 250ml bottles of Buxton Natural Mineral Water are offered at every mile from Mile 3 through to 25 Miles.
Expected Race Day Weather

Temperature: 42°F to 55°F
Humidity: 60% to 86%
Wind Speed: 6 mph to 11 mph

Additional Race Info

2014 London Marathon Ballot Entry

The 2014 Virgin London Marathon official ballot will open to all applicants on Monday, 29 April 2013.  This ballot system will close when 125,000 applications have been received.  There are about 37,000 places on offer for runners, but that includes those from charities as well, so actual numbers shortlisted from ballot or probably much less, around 1 in 7 chance if you register.

The ballot for 2013 London Marathon opened just after midnight. How long it stays open depends on how long it takes for the system to reach the quota. Last time it closed around 5.30pm.

If you want to apply for a ballot place be aware that the ballot closes very quickly, so get your application in fast (approx 24 hours, but don’t bet on it!). You will find out whether you’ve been successful when the ballot results are announced in October.

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