On January 23, 2006, Boston, Virgin London, BMW Berlin, Bank of America Chicago and ING New York City marathons collectively launched the World Marathon Majors – a new series offering a $1 million prize purse to be split equally between the top male and female marathoners in the world. In creating the World Marathon Majors, the organizers of these five races recognized an opportunity to advance the sport, raise awareness of its athletes and increase the level of interest in elite racing among running enthusiasts.
In 2013, Tokyo joined as a sixth race the World Marathon Majors.
Each of the six races that make up the World Marathon Majors boasts an international elite field for both men and women, has a mass participatory field completing the same course as the elites, takes place in a major international market, has a history of 25 years or more and is regarded among the very best in the industry. Collectively, the group annually attracts more than 5 million on-course spectators, more than 250 million television viewers, 300,000 applicants and 150,000 participants. It also raises more than $80 million for charity world wide and generates an economic impact of more than $400 million.
In addition to the six races, two other Qualifying Races were included in the series: the IAAF World Championships Marathon and the Olympic Marathon.
The inaugural 2006-2007 series launched at the 110th running of the Boston Marathon on April 17, 2006 and concluded on November 4, 2007 at the ING New York City Marathon.
Marathon Running Race Event Locations
Future Marathon Running Race Events