Your FLM entry article

Your article on entering the London Marathon seems remarkably similar to one I wrote for the BBC before you relaunched your site

If it has been influential in your feature I am most flattered. Although I do think mine is much funnier ;-)


  • Very nice! - but I suspect that it's a case of great minds thinking alike

    (ie extracting the most useful points from the literature that the Marathon produces)

    Are you going to run?

  • Yeah Sean, probably was a case of great minds - it is a complete maze to newbies and anything that helps is all good grist to the mill.

    I hope to run - I've actually applied for several charity places and in the ballot too to try to increase my chances.

    So fingers crossed!!!
  • Happens a lot, Annie. I often think I'm seeing "my" articles reproduced in other publications, when I'm sure the reality is that there's only so much factual material available about a given topic and only so many ways of organising it into a logical piece of writing.

    The only exception was a couple of years ago when I'm absolutely sure that the person who wrote the round-up of the latest health research in a national Sunday paper lifted the copy almost verbatim on a couple of occasions from journal review columns I'd done in a trade publication. I felt quite flattered.

    Cheers, V-rap.
  • I only wish I had time to go to the BBC site... :-)
  • Considering the enormous fee we "overseas" runners had to pay for a place in 2002 it's too bad that they don't send us application forms for 2003 automatically.
  • The overseas fee has even been raised for 2003: It is 60 pds now!
  • It is outrageous, and they keep on saying the Switzerland is an expensive country!!! At least our marathons do not have grossly inflated overseas fees. Everyone pays the same. I think this is discrimination!!! Any lawyers in the house?
  • NessieNessie ✭✭✭
    Would there be a problem if an overseas runner entered using a UK address? I'd be quite happy to forward corrspondence to an ex-pat if they wanted to use my address, and enter through the ballot (although how I'd feel if they got a place and I didn't, I'm not sure).

    Just a thought.
  • Nessie, that's kind of you -- but it's irritatingly difficult even to get an entry form. We have to go via London Marathon's pet travel agency and send international reply coupons etc. We don't get a free copy of the magazine with a form.
  • An overseas runner with a UK address (and UK bank account) will obviously have to use the UK entry form which is different.

    To get the overseas entry form isn't that tedious. I received it one week after I sent over the coupons.

    Anyway, to compare both procedures have a look at my London Marathon Fansite:
  • 60 pounds is a rip off.the cleaner in my office earns way less than that in a could feed a whole load of starving africans for 60 pounds. i can only laugh when i see charities claiming raise 2000 pounds and you can run london for free.why do we have race sponsors when if we are going to charge people 60 pounds to run.the british pound is one of the strongest currencies in the world and charging foreigners ridiculous amounts to run might not affect race numbers but it is not fair. the biggest race in south africa is a 90km one and the entry is about one tenth of londons.12 000 people ran this year.maybe we should charge brits london marathon rates when they come and run here??
  • Patrick, it's not the Brits' fault the entry fee is so extortionate - its The London Marathon Limited's. Incidentally any surplus goes to charity (helping to provide recreational facilities for deprived Londoners)so at least we're not lining the pockets of any fatcats ( I hope!)
  • Hi, I ran the Paris this year and was charged more than a local entry, to a marathon that is not over subscribed, so London is not the only one.

  • If you think that's expensive have a look at the overseas entry fee for the boston marathon!!!!!!!!
  • Well, Boston at 100 USD costs about 103 EURO and London at 60 PDS is 96 EURO.

    But compare: Boston for US residents is 75 USD, and 100 USD for foreigners makes a surcharge of 33%.
    London for UK residents is 25 PDS, and 60 PDS for overseas makes a surcharge of 140%.

    Anyway, crossing Tower Bridge is worth it
  • Running past Wellesley College and down Boylston street is worth it too ;-)
  • Interesting points raised all round chaps. Living in Naples I sent off to sportstours for the overseas entry as I had when living in Germany (I'm in the RAF so I get around a bit!) back in 97. I was shocked to see that the overseas entry is now a ballot along with the UK entry system. Back in 97 it was a guaranteed entry and was a good way for those of us in Forces rejected through the UK ballot to enter again!

    Luckily enough I got a Good for Age entry this time on the back of this years performance so didn't have to cough up 60 quid. Looking around at Marathons here in Italy they too charge a higher rate for 'foreigners' but its nowhere near the mark-up at FLM. 'Rip-off Britain' at its best. I agree with you though Ruhrrunner - my hairs still stand on end on the back of my neck going over Tower Bridge even after doing it 8 times!

    All the best to everyone in April
  • Wow I didn't know there was still a ballot for overseas entries too.

    Thanks guys

    I've amended my article accordingly

    My Guide to entering The London Marathon.
  • Wow Annie I'm impressed!! good to see that the Beeb takes notice of joe public!
  • I felt stung at £70 for New York but at least I'm not out in the cold on this. To be fair there's a huge amount of organisation, police, prize fund etc that I expect to pay a bit more - but I still think it's a rip off.

  • Ok, I will take it as a toll for crossing Tower Bridge. This will let Skye Bridge being no longer the most expensive one.


  • Do you have to pay a toll to cross the Skye Bridge on foot?
  • If you think the entry fee is a rip-off why pay it! If more people took this attitude then the race organisers would do something about it.
  • Yeah, look at the race fee as a road toll for using some of the most under-maintained, over trafficked, stressful and dangerous roads in Europe.
  • I don't object to race fees as such. Merely to the huge difference between the fees for runners in the country where the marathon takes place and runners from other countries who want to visit. The London fee for UK runners is not bad at all - it's about the same as I've paid to run a much more modest (tho' equally well-organized) marathon in Denmark on Sunday week.
  • Have FLM ever offered any justification for charging such a large mark up for overseas entries? What is the point?
  • I was hoping that an "all you need to know" page might include the address for sending proof of "good for age" category.

    As for the FLM site itself, I've rarely seen anything so useless. Almost entirely content-free, and you presumably need broadband to use it too.
  • On the other hand I don't run marathons on the basis of the web site (I almost wrote "races" there but in fact I did run the Compton Downland Challenge last year after seeing their web site!)
  • Agreed FLM site is pants, but you don't need broadband to use it - it is very very slow if you haven't got it though cos of the ridiculous front page with flash movies in it. But also agreed with Jonathan you shouldn't run on the basis of a website - FLM Ltd are experts in race organisation and getting a race so popular that despite detractors thousands and thousands want it enter it year on year.

    BTW - good for age entry address - get in entries with proof of time and age by 18th October:

    Good for Age
    Flora London Marathon
    PO Box 3460
    SE1 8YN

    I do say that Marathon News is your bible for entering so that's where you would have found the address.

    All the best

    My Guide to Entering the London Marathon.
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