Boston Marathon

Boston Marathon Announces Smaller Field Size for in-Person Race

The BAA said said the virtual race will be open to the first 70,000 participants.

The in-person component of this year's Boston Marathon will have a reduced field size of 20,000 runners, the Boston Athletic Association announced Monday.

Registration for the in-person race will take place April 20 through April 23 and slots will be given based on the amount of time each runner has run under their qualifying standard, the BAA said in a statement.

The announcement comes after the BAA earlier this month announced it will hold a virtual Boston Marathon to coincide with the traditional in-person race, which is planned for Oct. 11.

The virtual race will be open to the first 70,000 participants to register.

The BAA has said it will strive to maintain a participant composition for the in-person race similar to years past, with about 80% comprised of qualified entrants and 20% comprised of invitational entries, including charity program runners.

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Registration for the virtual race will take place the B.A.A.’s Athletes’ Village website and is separate from the in-person registration. Participants must complete a 26.2 miles run in one, continuous attempt to earn their finisher’s medal.

The announcement comes after the BAA in January announced Oct. 11 as the new, tentative date for the 125th Boston Marathon.

The 2021 marathon had already been postponed from its traditional date, Patriots Day in April, while the 2020 marathon was ultimately canceled in favor of a virtual race. It was the first time in the famed race's long history that it had been called off.

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

Gov. Charlie Baker has announced the state will move into Phase 4, Step 1 on March 22, which will allow large indoor and outdoor arenas and ballparks like Fenway Park, Gillette Stadium and TD Garden to admit up to 12% of capacity.

Road races are expected to be allowed at some point during the fourth and final phase of Massachusetts' reopening plan, but the administration has yet to release further details.

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