Boston Marathon

2021 Boston Marathon Still in Limbo Amid Surge in Mass. Cases, BAA Says

The 2021 Boston Marathon was already postponed from its traditional date in April until at least the fall

A close-up of the Boston Marathon finish line
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images, File

The organizers of the Boston Marathon said Tuesday that they can't confirm the race, which was postponed in 2020, will be run in fall 2021 until early in the year.

The update was given because of the surge in coronavirus cases that Massachusetts is contending with, according to the Boston Athletic Association.

"We will continue to work with city and state officials in preparation for a safe return to in-person racing in the fall," read a tweet from the world-famous marathon's account.

The 2021 Boston Marathon was already postponed from its traditional date in April until at least the fall. BAA CEO Tom Grilk said in October that it would be impossible to safely hold the event until Massachusetts reaches Phase 4 of the state's reopening plan, when the vaccine is widely distributed and road races are again permitted.

Grilk said the BAA was assessing "all elements of the race," including the possibility of a race with a reduced field size or one held on a weekend.

“We are optimistic that the Boston Marathon will continue its tradition of celebrating the spirit of community and athletic excellence next fall. We know there will be many questions and we will look to address them in the coming months ahead,” Grilk said in October.

The 2021 Boston Marathon, which would have been held for April, will be pushed back to at least the fall amid the coronavirus pandemic.

He told NBC10 Boston that there could be a virtual component of the next marathon as well.

The 2020 race was race was delayed from its traditional Patriots Day start in March, shortly after the coronavirus outbreak arrived in Massachusetts, and was eventually held as a 10-day virtual experience.

Massachusetts is in Phase 3, Step 1 of its reopening plan, though with additional restrictions implemented for the holidays. But Boston and other communities that the marathon runs through have moved back to Phase 2, Step 2 -- a move taken to contend with local surges.

The state is averaging more than 3,000 new coronavirus cases a day, with a 6.7% positive test rate and over 2,000 people hospitalized with COVID-19. The positive test rate and number of hospitalizations are both on the rise.

Gyms, movie theaters and indoor gathering spaces will have to shutter for three weeks after Boston and a few nearby communities revert back to Phase 2 Step 2.

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