FAQ

Contact Info:
Boston Office (Administration)
185 Dartmouth Street
6th floor
Boston MA 02116
phone:617-236-1652
fax:617-236-4505
e-mail:info@baa.org
Hopkinton Office (Registration)
“The Starting Line”/One Ash St.
Hopkinton MA 01748
phone:508-435-6905
fax:508-435-6590
e-mail:info@baa.org

Frequently Asked Questions

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A:
No, please do NOT run if you have not been officially entered in the race. Race amenities along the course and at the finish, such as fluids, medical care, and traffic safety, are provided based on the number of expected official entrants. Any addition to this by way of unofficial participants, adversely affects our ability to ensure a safe race for everyone.
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For application into the Boston Marathon, applicants must provide the name and date of the Marathon at which they qualified, and their official finishing time. The B.A.A. will verify all qualifying times before granting acceptance into the race.

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After you submit your application, you'll receive an e-mail confirming that we've received your application. Verification of your qualified time can then take up to five weeks as the results from your qualifying race are verified. Once we verify your time, you'll receive a second e-mail that confirms your entrance into the Boston Marathon.

The B.A.A. asks for your cooperation and patience during this verification process. Please do not contact the B.A.A. during this period unless requested to do so by the Registration office.

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The B.A.A. does not decide whether a qualifying race is certified or not. The race director or race management of that event can tell you if a course is certified. For a complete list of certified courses in the U.S.A. check USA Track & Field. In Canada check Athletics Canada. Internationally, an extensive calendar of races is listed at the Association of International Marathon and Road Races website, with indication of courses that are not certified.
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Yes, the event will engage the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USASA), in accordance with the international Standards of Doping Control, to test selected athletes who earn prize money. Athletes who participate in the B.A.A. Half Marathon may be subject to drug testing in accordance with the USADA Protocol for Olympic Movement Testing (USADA Protocol). USADA will be responsible for conducting comprehensive drug testing, as well as the adjudication of positive findings. Athletes with positive drug test results will have their cases adjudicated according to the USADA Protocol and will be penalized, if appropriate, according to applicable IAAF or World Anti Doping Agency rules. Such penalties may include, but not be limited to, a period of ineligibility from competition, as well as disqualification from past competitions and cancellation of awards and prizes previously awarded. Any substance taken by an athlete is at his/her own risk and may result in a positive sample. BEWARE: some nutritional supplements, prescription, cold medicines and over-the-counter medications contain prohibited substances. Information regarding specific drugs and substances may be obtained by calling the USADA Drug Reference Line at 1-800-233-0393, or by visiting www.usantidoping.org or www.888athlete.org.
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The 13.1-mile, rolling course combines both a looped and out-and-back route, beginning and ending near White Stadium (also known as Schoolboy Stadium) in Boston's Franklin Park. Past participants in the B.A.A. Half Marathon should note this important change. Essentially, the course has been flipped from past years. From Franklin Park, the race heads North to the Forest Hills Overpass and the Arborway, running adjacent to the Arnold Arboretum. The course turns right at Pond Street and continues North-bound onto the Jamaicaway (which becomes the Riverway), along Jamaica Pond and the other ponds and waterways that comprise Boston's Emerald Necklace. As the Riverway intersects with the Fenway, the race reverses direction with two left turns that sends runners South-bound on the Riverway.

After crossing over Huntington Avenue via overpass, there's a sharp right turn onto River Road in Brookline, followed by a sharp left turn onto Pond Ave. As the course hugs the western border of the Emerald Necklace, it turns left on Francis Parkman Drive, and then turns right on the Arborway and heads back adjacent to the Arboretum, over the Forest Hills Overpass, and into Franklin Park on Franklin Park Drive. In Franklin Park, the race turns right on Circuit Drive/N Jewish War Veterans Drive, and continues in a southward direction into the park for about a mile, before a hairpin turn reverses the course back on the same road.

The course passes the entrance/exit to the park on the left, and continues northward on Circuit Drive/N Jewish War Veterans Drive towards the Franklin Park Zoo. After a right turn on Pierpont Road, the race enters the Zoo for a quick counter-clockwise loop, and exits with a right turn onto Pierpont. Just before Pierpont intersects with Seaver Street, the course cuts across the park in a Western direction and turns right onto Playstead Road, before a finish near White Stadium. Please note that the course will remain open for two hours, 30 minutes after the start. Participants unable to complete the race within that time period will be asked to finish the race on the sidewalk. Timing will conclude 2:30:00 after the start. Go to map of the course.

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Official Boston Marathon Merchandise will be on sale at the John Hancock Sports & Fitness Expo, several Boston sporting goods stores, in Copley Square Park and at the Family Meeting Area after the race. Before or after race weekend, merchandise may be ordered online or via mail-order directly from our licensees. Some of them may also have limited amounts of previous years’ merchandise available.

John B. Hynes Convention Center
900 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02115
617-954-2000

Friday, April 17, 2:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. (tentative times)
Saturday, April 18, 9:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. (tentative times)
Sunday, April 19, 9:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. (tentative times)

The John Hancock Sports & Fitness Expo is open to the public and admission is free. The Hynes Convention Center is conveniently located in the center of Boston, in the Back Bay area. For more information about the 2015 John Hancock Sports & Fitness Expo, visit the Conventures website.

To see a list of official Boston Marathon licensees and their products go to our Shop page.

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The average temperature at the start of the Boston Marathon ranges from 45-50 degrees F. The spread of temperature throughout the race can average approximately 25 degrees F, meaning the finish line temperature can average from 70-75 degrees F. However, in years past, there have been examples of extreme weather at the Boston Marathon. See below for examples:

Snow

  • 1907 Traces of sleet
  • 1908 Snowflakes and drizzle
  • 1925 Cold wind and occasional snowflakes
  • 1961 Snow squalls driven by winds of 10–12 mph; recorded temperature was 39 degrees
  • 1967 Snow squalls accompanied the runners through the first five miles.

Driving Rain

  • 1970 Mix of rain and sleet; temperatures in the high 30s;
  • 2007 Rain; winds gusting 25-30 mph; temperatures in the mid 40s.

Extreme Heat or Unseasonable Warmth

  • 1905 The temperature was reported to have reached the 100-degree mark.
  • 1909 The temperature soared to 97 degrees.
  • 1915 Reports of “intense heat.”
  • 1927 With the temperature reaching 84 degrees, a newly surfaced, yet uncured, road melted under the runners’ shoes.
  • 1931 Reports of “terrific heat” that “spelled ruin to the hopes of countless ambitious runners.”
  • 1952 The temperature rose to the upper 80s, with a high of 88 degrees.
  • 1958 The temperature climbed to 84 degrees.
  • 1976 For much of the first half of the race, the temperature along the course was reported to be 96 degrees.
  • 1987 The temperature was in the mid/upper 80s and the humidity was more than 95 percent.
  • 2004 The hottest marathon since 1976 (86 degrees at the finish) caused a record number of heat-related illnesses.
  • 2012 The temperature reached 75 degrees by the start of the Women's Elite field (9:30 a.m.), with a high of 89 degrees reported in Framingham (10K mark) by mid-day.
A:

Official Entrants receive:

  • Admission to the John Hancock Sports & Fitness Expo
  • Long sleeved t-shirt
  • Bib number
  • An official result from an electronically recorded official timing system
  • Runner’s gear check (click here for more information)
  • Boston Marathon Official Program
  • Complimentary ticket for the Pre-Race Pasta Dinner
  • Complimentary transportation to the start
  • Access to the Athletes’ Village in Hopkinton, providing entertainment, light refreshments, Poland Spring water, Gatorade Endurance Formula, PowerBar, bagels, tenting, and portable toilets.
  • Water and Gatorade Endurance Formula (lemon/lime flavor) along the course
  • First aid / medical facilities along the course and at the finish area
  • Athlete tracking
  • A finisher’s medal upon finishing the marathon before 6:10 p.m.
  • Baggage and dressing area (no showers)
  • Massage
  • Family meeting area
  • Admission to the Awards Ceremony
  • Complimentary ticket for the Post-Race Party
  • Results postcard providing all 5km split information, official and net times
  • Finisher’s certificate (mailed during the summer)
  • Results book (mailed over the summer)
B.A.A. Moment 3

1966 - Bobbi Gibb

Although not an official entrant, Roberta “Bobbi” Gibb became the first woman to run the Boston Marathon. Joining the starting field shortly after the gun had been fired, Gibb finished the race in 3:21:40 to place 126th overall. Gibb again claimed the “unofficial” title in 1967 and 1968.