Chicago Marathon

When Is the 2021 Chicago Marathon: Start Time, Course Route, How to Watch

The 2021 Bank of America Chicago Marathon will be a comeback celebration, featuring some exceptional racers.

The Bank of America Chicago Marathon returns on Sunday, Oct. 10, 2021, with runners tackling the 26.2-mile course after a year’s hiatus because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The marathon will feature more than 35,000 runners, including some of the most elite athletes that the sport has to offer. The race starts in Grant Park and travels through 29 Chicago neighborhoods before ending back in the park. See the full size version of the 2021 Chicago Marathon course map here.

This year's race will be a comeback celebration, but it will also feature some exceptional racers, including Reuben Kipyego, the second-fastest man in 2021, Olympian and past marathon champion Galen Rupp, Kenyan sensation Ruth Chepngetich, and Sara Hall, who will be making a comeback in more ways than one as she looks to break a big record in this year's race.

Several athletes in the elite wheelchair competition will compete back-to-back, in Chicago on Oct. 10 and Boston on Oct. 11, with Daniel Romanchuk, Marcel Hug and Tatyana McFadden planning to complete the double.

Several changes have been made for this year’s edition of the race, including the addition of new COVID testing and vaccination protocols. All participants will be required to provide proof of complete COVID vaccination, or proof of a negative COVID test, in order to run in the race, according to marathon officials.

Spectators will be allowed to watch the race in Grant Park on race day, with access to the post-race party opening at 9:30 a.m. Spectators will be required to go through a screening process at the entrance, with gates located off of Michigan Avenue.

Fans will also be able to follow their favorite runners on the course, and are encouraged to take CTA trains and buses to do so.

When is the 2021 Bank of America Chicago Marathon?

The 43rd running of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon is scheduled to return to take place on Sunday, Oct. 10.

The weekend schedule of events includes:

Friday, October 8
Abbott Health & Fitness Expo; Packet pick-up
McCormick Place, West Building, Hall F2
9 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Saturday, October 9
Abbott Chicago 5K
Grant Park (Ida B. Wells east of Michigan Ave.)
Race start: 7:30 a.m.

Abbott Health & Fitness Expo; Packet pick-up
McCormick Place, West Building, Hall F2
9 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Sunday, October 10
Bank of America Chicago Marathon
Grant Park

Marathon Wheelchair Start (men): 7:20 a.m.
Marathon Wheelchair Start (women): 7:21 a.m.
Marathon Handcycle Start: 7:23 a.m.
Wave 1 Start (red): 7:30 a.m.
Wave 2 Start (blue): 8 a.m.
Wave 3 Start (orange): 8:35 a.m.
Spectator access to Grant Park begins: 9:30 a.m.

Abbott 27.2 Fest
Grant Park, Butler Field
9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Runner Reunite
9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Where is the start line?

The Bank of America Chicago Marathon start line is located in Grant Park at the intersection of Columbus Drive and Monroe Street.

Where is the Bank of America Chicago Marathon finish line located?

The Bank of America Chicago Marathon finish line is located on Columbus Drive south of Balbo Drive in Grant Park.

How can you watch the race live?

NBC 5 Chicago

NBC 5 Chicago and nbcchicago.com will provide complete live TV coverage and live streaming of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon on race day. The NBC 5 Chicago live television broadcast will air from 7-11 a.m. and the live stream will be available right here and in the NBC Chicago app from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.

This year, NBC 5's marathon broadcast and digital coverage also will stream on NBC Chicago's free app on Roku, Apple TV and Amazon Fire TV, as well as Peacock and on LX.

Telemundo Chicago

Telemundo Chicago and telemundochicago.com will also provide live reports and live streaming of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon on race day. The Telemundo Chicago live television broadcast will air starting at 7 a.m. and the live stream will be available at telemundochicago.com from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.

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