GFA (Good for age): relates to age when you did the time or age on day of VLM?

I somehow haven't managed to find the info on the VLM website - I did look, honest.

So if you're going for a GFA time. Let's say for example that you will be 60 the day before VLM 2016, and you want a GFA place. Do you have to run the 50-59 GFA time to qualify, or the 60-65 time?

(Boston is clear: you would have to run the 60-65 time - although you also have to hope you're fast enough within your BQ agegroup - iirc you had to be over a minute faster than qualifying time this year to make the cut for the race place).



  • It's your age on the day of the race that counts, so in your example you'd run the 60-65 time, even though you might be 59 (or 58, or conceivably late 57) when you run it.

  • Thanks CD! Also apologies if I asked this several years ago and forgot (I did search the RW forum history but you know, it's not that searchtastic).

    I am just thinking about this to distract myself from the fact I'm currently Very Slow Indeed. Hoovering behind the wardrobe as it were. But good to know there's that extra bit of wiggle room.

  • so now i need to know the date of VLM in 2017... image

  • I was wondering this too.  So if I've understood correctly, (assuming the GFA times don't change) if I ran 3:14 as a 39 year old in spring 2016, that would qualify me for a GFA place for VLM 2018 when I'm 41?

    Is there 'official' information about this anywhere?


  • Raquel 65Raquel 65 ✭✭✭
    I am not sure this is right, but also can't find the information! I am 49 and ran 3:58 in Brighton yesterday. The london GFA time for a 50 year old woman is 4 hours but I'm not 50 until June. A couple of running friends have said I need to be 50 when I actually run the time?
  • It's your age on the race day for which you wish to use the GFA that counts, so you would qualify or next year's London.

  • BirchBirch ✭✭✭

    yes, it's as a148 states - I'm in VLM at age 60 GFA this year - qualifying time set last year age 59 - so you're in, Raquel  . . .

  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    Don't count your chickens quite yet though. As with last year, the organisers have a history of changing the requirements at the last minute. The exact requirements and small print won't be known until sometime after this years race.
  • You're right Millsy, people have been caught out before by the goalposts being moved as far as the qualifying times are concerned.  But the rule about age on race day being what counts has always been the case.  It's in line with other marathons (Boston for example) and it's far simpler to check.  No reason for them to change it.

  • VDOT52VDOT52 ✭✭✭
    So is it currently 3:15 for a v40 man? That makes training for a marathon actually seem like something 0that might worth doing for me, once I get my half time down to comfortably sub 90 mins.
  • Raquel 65Raquel 65 ✭✭✭
    Wow -gives me hope I can run London next year! Adds to my happiness at getting sub 4.
  • dctdct ✭✭✭

    Sorry to intrude but I'm new to this marathon stuff. I'm 29 and ran a 2:59 at Brighton on Sunday. I would like to run London next year. When do London organisers open registration for good for age places for 2016? Or have I missed this?


  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    dct, good result in Brighton. London will usually announce the qualifying times after this years race. The application procedure has started in June / July if I remember correctly.
  • dctdct ✭✭✭

    Millsy – thanks. Not entirely sure how it happened – my 'strategy' went out the window within the first few miles. But here we are; chuffed and instantly addicted.

    Thanks for the info.

  • G-DawgG-Dawg ✭✭✭

    I hope they don't change the times for London GFA. I'm 47 and ran a 3.13 in Brighton on Sunday. It's been a running ambition to hit the London GFA time for years.

    Mind you, I also hit the Boston GFA time for the younger age group! image


  • all..... can you use your chip time or do they only accept the gun time for the GFA?


  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    Chip time will count.
  • Hi my GFA was rejected for London 2016 due to them not being able to read my times. Can I reapply again next year or do I have to get a GFA in the year I apply for London?

  • Why couldn't they read your times, Julie? If it is their fault and not yours they might change their minds if you ring them up (though the deadline is now past). When I first applied for a championship place a few years ago they rejected it because they'd got confused about the difference between gun time and chip time, but when I phoned up they realised it was their mistake and changed it. In any case, I believe the qualifying time lasts two years.

  • No they have said its not possible. It has been a mess from the start. They had a massive backlog for GFA and I phoned them twice to be told there was no problem it was just their delay. When I did finally speak to them on the third time they told me they had sent me a rejection email but none was received and that the deadline was over and there was nothing they could do. I have since emailed the help line three times but no one has got back to me so pretty fed up reallyimage

  • That's a pity. I rang them on the day when they said to get in touch if I hadn't heard anything and the nice woman processed my entry then and there and gave me confirmation.

    It might have been simpler as my time was in the London Marathon and there was a link to my result.

    The qualifying time lasts for two years though - so I qualified in 2015 and it is OK for 2016 and 2017 - so hopefully you can do 2017 ?

    What race was it and what proof did you have that they couldn't read ?
  • Cheers Cougie for confirming the GFA qualification rule.  I ran the Liverpool marathon (2015) and so downloaded my results from the official page but I also checked the attachments before I sent it and could access it and see it so am not sure why they could not.  Am still waiting for a response from the help desk. Am glad you had a nice woman as mine put the phone down on me when I asked to speak to a manager

  • So If I get a sub 3.50 (GFA women 41-49) at manchester 2016 when Im 40, does this mean Ill have a GFA place for London 2017 when im 41 ? Or do I still need to run the GFA time for 40 which is 3.45 ... ?    


  • You'll be 40. So you need to get the GFA time for a 40 year old.

  • Thats what I assumed but this thread confused me into thinking as Id be 41 in 2017 a sub 3.50 would qualify even if I had run it at 40 .... Im aiming for sub 3.45 anyway so fingers crossed !


  • I think cougie is confused by the fact that London GFA age group is 41-49, not 40-49.  If you run 3:49:59 at Manchester age 40, it'll qualify you for London the following year when you'll be 41 on race day.

  • NayanNayan ✭✭✭
    Is there any truth to the rumour that all GFA times will be tightened up by 5 minutes after the 2016 London marathon
  • There are always rumours about changing them, and some of them have moved quite a bit back and forth over the years.  Best not to rely on anything until the times for 2017 are published, some time after the 2016 race is complete. 

  • I've just run 3:10:17 at Manchester as a 39 year old so as it stands that gives me a GFA place at London 2018 when I'm 41.  Just hoping they don't reduce the qualifying standard down from sub 3:15 to sub 3:10 and I'll miss out by 17 seconds!  Is there any leeway offered in such a case?

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