Question about London marathon.




What is the start like at London marathon? Can you get a clear run fom the outset?

I've got the option of a GFA place at London next year after running 3:04 at Manchester marathon in April. I'd really like to go for sub 3 in that race but I'm worried that I might get slowed down/ blocked at the start and not get the time.

To get sub 3 I'll need to run something like 1:28/ 1:32 as thats how my best marathon times have come, from slightly positve splits. I don't want to be in the position of needing a negative or even split.


Sorry for the ramble, but any advice would be appreciated.





  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    You will be fine as long as everything is the same as this yr.

    You will get to start in the "fast good for age start" which is right at the front of the red start. No one will hold you up, if anything they went off a bit too fast.

    You also get a better toilet to runner ratio.
  • cheers Millsy.

  • I ran a 6.05 first mile from the start of the GFA last time I ran it. As Millsy says, too fast if anything. 

  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    It's not called the "Testosterone" start for nothing.
  • PhilPubPhilPub ✭✭✭
    Sussex Runner (NLR) wrote (see)

    I ran a 6.05 first mile from the start of the GFA last time I ran it. As Millsy says, too fast if anything. 

    It's a good pace if you're aiming for 2:40!

  • Yes, it caught me out. That was 4 or 5 years ago and the start was very hilly which felt a bit odd to do 3 miles of hills before joining the rest of the field in their flat course.

  • Well it was a bit wird Phil. Might have been because of those hills at the start. Is it me or is the GFA start really hilly compared to the rest of the marathon?

  • PhilPubPhilPub ✭✭✭

    I've not run it during the marathon but I know the route as it's on my regular running patch.  Yes, there is a rise or two before you join the others.  I can't imagine it's worth a great deal of time, and you could argue that this is cancelled out by going net downhill into Woolwich, but I imagine it is marginally the slowest route.

  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    I think the red start is a bit hillier in the first couple of miles than the blue one.
  • I'd not say it was hilly ? Unless you count the speed bumps as hills ?
  • Was something like 6.05/7.00/6.30.....very off putting to get weird splits like that. Soon settled down after that into a regular pace. I'm usually like a metronome with my pacing. The year before we had the celebs in front of us and was held up nicely by Kate Lawler's arse and some Masai Warriors.

  • I remember that. I nearly ran into a Masai spear.
  •  Forget hills, there are no hills. image

  • Just applied for GFA entry for london 2014, can anyone confirm that i'll get in as i ran 3.15.19 in london 2013 at the age of 49, but will be moving up into mv50 nine months before the event? anyone had experience of this?

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