The Marine Corps Marathon holds a special place in our hearts and it’s one you’ll never forget. While it’s by no means an easy course, it is steeped in history, lined with spectators, and the best place to be on the fourth Sunday in October.
Boasting nearly 21,000 marathon finishers in 2011, Marine Corps is a crowded affair. Your race doesn’t just start when the gun goes off, but much earlier in the morning. Although training will always be key to a solid running performance, being prompt – and even early – for subway rides, bag drops and corrals will make your experience all the more better.
While the start of the race is at 8am you’ll need to arrive much earlier. Most runners will take the subway to the Pentagon or Rosslyn stations. From there you’ll need to walk nearly a mile to the actual starting village. With all the crowds and the darkness of morning, it’s often a very SLOW walk. To get in your corral comfortably – without too much pushing, shoving and crowding - you should head down or be in the corral no later than 7:15. That means arriving at the Pentagon or Rosslyn stations no later than 6:30 am so you can hit the bag drop by 7:00 am. Plan accordingly – it may mean an earlier wake-up call than you’d hoped for, but that extra hour will save tremendous amounts of pre-race stress.
Once you’ve arrived safely, look for your pace team leader inside the corrals. They’ll be there at around 7:15 am. We’ll be lined up according to the Marine Corps Marathon’s own pace signs. So just come on over, say hi, and start a conversation – we’re eager to get to know you and happy to discuss our strategy and put your nerves at ease.