B.A.A. Boston Marathon
Inspired by their experience at the 1896 Olympic Games, several members of the Boston Athletic Association founded their own marathon in 1897. The race has been run every year since and is recognised as the world’s oldest annual marathon (the 1918 edition featured a military relay and the 2020 edition was run as a Virtual Experience). Both the start and finish lines have moved slightly over the years, but much of the course remains exactly as it was originally designed. Since 1924 the race has started in the town of Hopkinton, while the point-to-point course finishes on Boston’s historic Boylston Street.
Runners must qualify for entry by meeting time standards corresponding to gender and age, which is another aspect – besides its course and longevity – unique to the Boston Marathon.
Inaugural running: 1897
Largest field: 35,868 finishers (1996)
Estimated number of spectators: 500,000
- Men: 2:01:39 2:03:02 (Geoffrey Mutai, KEN, 2011)
- Women: 2:19:59 (Buzunesh Deba, ETH, 2014)
- Men: 7 (Clarence DeMar, USA)
- Women: (Catherine Ndereba, KEN)
- Runner prize purse: US$751,500 (includes Open, Masters, and Para Athletes Prize Money; $150,000 for men’s and women’s open champions)
Wheelchair course records:
- Men: 1:18:04 (Marcel Hug, SUI, 2017)
- Women: 1:28:17 (Manuela Schär, SUI, 2017)
Most wheelchair victories:
- Men: 10 (Ernst van Dyk, RSA)
- Women: 8 (Jean Driscoll, USA)
- Wheelchair prize purse: US$125,000 (US$25,000 for male and female wheelchair champions)
Thomas Grilk: President & Chief Executive Officer, B.A.A.
Media contacts: Kendra Butters Communications Director, Chris Lotsbom Communications Manager
Upcoming event dates: 11 October 2021; 18 April 2022