The Berlin Marathon (branded BMW Berlin Marathon for sponsorship reasons) is a major running and sporting event held annually in Berlin, Germany. The official marathon distance of 42.195 kilometers (26 miles 385 yards) is set up as a citywide road race where professional athletes and amateur runners jointly participate. Initiated in 1974, the event traditionally takes place on the last weekend in September, with the exceptions of 2000, because of a conflict with the Olympic Marathon date, and 2018, held two weeks earlier due to Day of German Unity preparations.
|Date||Usually last weekend in September (except 2018: 16 September)|
|Course records||Men: 2:01:39 (2018, WR) |
Women: 2:18:11 (2018)
|Official site||BMW Berlin Marathon|
There have been several title sponsors in the race's history. From 1974 until 1989 it was just the Berlin Marathon. In 1990 it was the Yanase Berlin Marathon. In 1991 and 1992 it was the Canon Berlin Marathon. It reverted to simply the Berlin Marathon from 1993 until 1997. It then became the Alberto Berlin Marathon in 1998 and 1999. A new title sponsor changed the name to real,- Berlin Marathon from 2000-2010. Finally this has been the BMW Berlin Marathon since 2011.
The Berlin marathon and related events are split over two days. Thousands of additional inline skaters compete at the marathon course the Saturday before the running event. Power walkers, hand-bikers, wheelchair riders, and a children's marathon (4.2195 km) are also part of the marathon weekend, which is organised by SCC EVENTS.
Along with five other city races, the World Championships and Olympic Games it forms the Abbott World Marathon Majors, a series offering a $1 million prize purse to be split equally between the top male and female marathoners and lesser amounts for the second and third male/female finishers plus awards for the top wheelchair competitors.
The 2018 edition saw Eliud Kipchoge setting a new world record with a time of 2:01:39. The 33 year old Kenyan improved the former mark set by Dennis Kimetto at the Marathon's 2014 edition by 1:18 minutes. The same race saw also fast times on the women's race with a former course record of 2:19:12 set by Mizuki Noguchi in 2005. Gladys Cherono (Kenya) set a new course record with 2:18:11, with the runner up Ruti Aga (Ehthopia) with 2:18:34 and third placed Tirusnesh Dibaba finished 2:18:55, both below the old course record.
The course within the metropolis starts and finishes near the Brandenburg Gate. Because of the division of the city, the marathon events before 1990 were limited to the area of West Berlin. Only on 30 September 1990, were athletes able to run through the Brandenburg Gate and the unified city saw its first race running through both halves. It was reported that a great many of the runners had tears in their eyes as they ran through the gate.
Nowadays, after leaving Brandenburg Gate, the course passes Charlottenburg, around Tiergarten, along Moabit and Mitte, and then south to Friedrichshain. After that, it winds west between Kreuzberg and Neukölln, through Schöneberg, over to Friedenau and Zehlendorf, before turning north back toward the city's center. Looping above Schöneberg, the course comes full circle as it finishes through the Gate.
On different routes there have been two major international marathons at the 1936 Olympic Games and 2009 IAAF World Championships. Also Ulrich Hutmacher (GER) won a marathon in Berlin on 14 Oct 1973 with a time of 2:19:32 but that race is not considered part of this series.
- World records
|1998||Ronaldo da Costa||Brazil||2:06:05|
|1977||Christa Vahlensieck||West Germany||2:34:48|
Key: Current course record German championship race
In terms of finishing athletes Berlin is one of four world-wide marathons with more than 40,000 finishers, along with New York City, Chicago, and Paris.
The skater marathon has numbered thousands of participants each year. It is considered the largest inline skater marathon in the world and is the final venue of the World Inline Cup.
In 2008, 166 handbiker and 34 wheelchair athletes participated at the Berlin marathon. The athletes start at the same day, usually at Sunday, like the runners and power walkers.
- Wheelchair race
- Men: 1:21:39, Heinz Frei (SUI), 1997
- Women: 1:42:07, Janette Jansen (NED), 1992
- Handbiker race
- Men: 1:05:46, Bernd Jeffré (GER), 2008
- Women: 1:13:55, Dorothee Vieth (GER), 2008
- "Tag der Deutschen Einheit verdrängt Berlin-Marathon". Retrieved 2018-09-15.
- "Now a 3-Time Champ, Cherono Adds Course Record to Berlin Marathon Resume". Runner's World. 2018-09-16. Retrieved 2018-09-28.
- Marius Bakken. "Berlin Marathon". Retrieved 2009-04-17.