Sunday, October 17, 2021 at 7:00 AM
Registration is now open – learn more about registration here.
On-site registration at our Health & Fitness Expo will not be available for this event.
All participants of the Detroit Free Press Marathon must be 16 years of age or older by race day to participate.
Our marathon course offers international appeal, traversing both downtown Detroit and Windsor, Ontario, crossing the border at both the Ambassador Bridge and Detroit-Windsor Tunnel. You will run through historic neighborhoods, around beautiful Belle Isle, and along the spectacular RiverWalk.
With a wave start, smaller groups of participants are sent off at two-minute intervals beginning at 7:00 AM, which eases congestion in those early miles. Groups are based on the projected pace indicated on the registration form, so an accurate response is necessary.
View our full marathon course map below, or click here to view more course and event maps.
You must be able to complete the marathon in 6.5 hours from the time the “Last Chance Pacer” crosses the start line. We will close the marathon finish line at 2:00 PM, with roads incrementally opening along the course up to the 2:00 PM cutoff.
A “Last Chance Pacer” will be provided for your event. These pacers will travel at the average pace needed to cross the finish line at six and a half hours. Your progress will be monitored throughout the race. If you fall significantly behind the “Last Chance Pacer”, you will be given fair warning to pick up the pace. If you can’t keep pace, you will be required to board a bus following the pacers to be transported back to the Start/Finish area.
We are fortunate to offer two international border crossings during the course of our event. To continue providing the unique opportunity of crossing the border twice, we MUST re-open the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel to vehicular traffic at 10:00 AM. To ensure your safety and to meet all time limits, we have established the following milestones:
|Milestone||Mile Marker||Kilometer Marker||Time of Day You Must Pass The Milestone|
|Start (W Fort St, west of Cass Ave)||0.0||0.0||7:24 AM|
|Bridge Entrance (at E Grand Blvd)||1.9||3.1||7:52 AM|
|Bridge Exit (at Huron Church Rd)||4.2||6.8||8:26 AM|
|Tunnel Entrance (at Park St E)||6.9||11.1||9:07 AM|
|Tunnel Exit (at W Jefferson Ave)||8.2||13.1||9:25 AM|
|Halfway (E Congress St & Bates St)||13.1||21.1||10:38 AM|
|Indian Village (Goethe St & Iroquois St)||17.3||27.8||11:41 AM|
|Belle Isle Entrance (at E Jefferson Ave)||19.1||30.7||12:08 PM|
|Belle Isle Exit (at E Jefferson Ave)||22.7||36.5||1:01 PM|
|End of Detroit Riverfront (Atwater St & Rivard St)||25.0||40.2||1:35 PM|
|Finish (W Fort St, west of Cass Ave)||26.2||42.2||1:54 PM|
NOTE: If at any time you fall behind these milestone times, you may be required to board a bus to be transported back to the start-finish area.
Marathon Pace Teams
Want to run with a group? Hope to finish within a certain time? Trying to qualify for Boston?
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, consider signing up for our Pace Team service at the Health & Fitness Expo. For more information about Pace Teams, click here.
The Marathon division is an international event crossing U.S. and Canadian borders twice. It is a privilege and an honor to use the Ambassador Bridge and the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel. Do not drop articles of clothing, water bottles, tissue or paper cups as you run across these prestigious landmarks. For all requirements and restrictions click here.
Prizing below is for Full Marathon Runners. All individual cash prizes are based on “clock time” (not chip time). We invite walkers to participate in this event, however no prizes will be awarded specifically for walkers.
|Place||Open Male/Female||Masters Male/Female|
NOTE: In the event that a Masters runner also places in the Overall division, they will receive both the Masters and the Overall cash awards.
Additional Marathon Prize Incentives:
First male to break race record of 2:13:07 (Greg Meyer, 1980) wins an additional $2,500
First female to break race record of 2:34:16 (Elena Orlova, 2004) wins an additional $2,500