Half Marathon

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About the Half Marathon

The BMO Vancouver Half Marathon starts at 07:00am on Sunday, May 3, 2015 at Queen Elizabeth Park. The start line is located inside Queen Elizabeth Park on Midlothian Avenue near Hillcrest Community Centre.

Date: Sunday, May 3, 2015
Time: 7:00am
Start Line: Queen Elizabeth Park
Finish Line: West Pender St. (between Bute St. & Thurlow St.)
Capped: 10,000 runners
Age: 16+ (anyone under the age of 18 must have parental consent)
Registration Deadline: TBD
Tier 1 Registration Fee: $89 (Prices do not include GST or online processing fee)

What’s Included with Registration

  • Race bib with built-in timing chip
  • Saucony technical t-shirt
  • Commemorative finisher’s medal
  • On-course services including water, toilets, electrolyte, and gels
  • Live entertainment at 20 stations along the course
  • Exciting downtown finish, with music, food, change rooms, and a Finish Line Street Festival

Tier Structure & Registration Policy

To improve your race experience and ensure our suppliers and stakeholders have enough time to meet our event requirements, we introduced changes to our registration policy in 2015. Click Here to Read More About the Tier Structure

Registration Confirmation

Click here and login to the Participant Dashboard to check if you’ve successfully completed your registration. Your name will appear within our searchable database if you’ve registered for the 2014 race. This database is updated daily; however, once you register, please allow 24 hours before confirming your entry online.

Package Pickup

There will be no package pick-up on race day. Please pick-up your package within Expo Hours.

Expo/Package Pickup Location: New venue at Vancouver Convention Centre West with triple the exhibitor space

Expo Hours:

Thursday, April 30 5pm-8pm
Friday, May 1, 11am – 8pm
Saturday, May 2, 10am to 6pm

How to…

You will need your bib number and your picture ID in order to pickup your package. Make sure to get everything you came for! Your race package includes Bib, Race Chip, Saucony® short-sleeved Tech Shirt, race goodies and a FREE Transit Ticket (pickup from the transit booth located at the Expo exit).

Express Check In for Platinum Runners

Platinum Runners have access to an express pickup line at the Health, Sports & Lifestyle Expo. Look for the special entrance marked Platinum Runners. Please bring your bib number and photo ID.

BMO Power of Blue

Special perks at the 2015 BMO Vancouver Marathon

Power of Blue

The BMO Power of Blue is back at the 2015 BMO Vancouver Marathon! Simply show your BMO Debit Card or BMO MasterCard to receive great perks. More details coming soon!

Learn more about the BMO Power of Blue here.

Bib Lookup

You will be able to look up your bib number prior to the day of the event.

Age Groups and Awards

Both male and female runners are automatically entered into the following competitive age groups: under 19; 20-24; 25-29; 30-34; 35-39; 40-44; 45-49; 50-54; 55-59; 60-64; 65-69; 70-74; 75-79; 80-84; 85-89; 90-94; 95-99; 100 and above.

First, second, and third place winners will be recognized after the race. Details to follow. Gun time, not chip time, will determine winning times. Please seed yourself in the appropriate corrals.

Start Line

Start Line schedule subject to change:

  • 06:00am: Arrive early to experience the Start Line vibe. Get your picture taken!
  • 06:00am-06:15am: Check your gear at our booth.
  • 06:15am-06:30am: Find your corral!
  • 06:45am: Warm-up Show with music and entertainment!
  • 07.00am: Race begins! First corral runners leave; subsequent corrals to follow.
  • 11:00am: Half Marathon course closes

Things to remember

  1. Please arrive at least one hour before your race starts if you want to check your gear.
  2. We encourage all participants to arrive at least 45 minutes early.
  3. Washrooms are available at the Start Line.
  4. The Start Line is equipped with: toilets, Gear Check, water, a Medical tent, and Ultima Replenisher Electrolyte Drink.

Please note: the Hillcrest Community Centre washroom, changing, and dining facilities are NOT available to participants. Thank you for respecting Hillcrest Community Centre staff and members.

Transportation

Public transportation is key to the success of the event. We do not provide parking for runners, but instead encourage you to take public transit using the FREE Translink passes that are available at the Health, Sports & Lifestyle Expo.

Traveling to the Start Line is easiest with Canada Line. Take the Canada Line from Downtown Vancouver (southbound) or from Richmond (northbound) and get off at King Edward or Oakridge-41st stations. From either station, you will walk to the Start Line; this takes about 15 minutes and volunteers will be there to guide you to the Runners’ Compound.

For more information on public transportation in Vancouver, please visit the Translink website.

Car Drop-offs

If you need to be dropped off near the Start Line, we recommend Main Street, near East 30th Avenue. Please make sure to give yourself lots of time to walk to the Start Line (about 5 minutes). Expect delays and lots of traffic, but try to embrace the anticipation and action–it’s all part of the journey!

Gear Check

Gear Check

If you plan to check your gear at the Start Line, please arrive at least 1 hour prior to your race.

Half Marathon Gear check closes at 06:45 a.m.

Bag-in-a-bag Procedure

  • Collect your clear plastic bag from Gear Check at the Start Line
  • Put your gear into the provided 21 x 26 clear plastic bag
  • Detach the label from your race bib and zip it to the bag
  • Bring your bag to the Gear Check counter

Pickup Procedure

  • Go to the Gear Check Pickup Area on W. Pender St near the Finish Line (between Bute and Burrard).
  • Show your bib to the volunteer; your bib number matches the label that you attached to your gear.
  • Any lost or left items must be claimed from the Information Tent at the Finish Line by 5:00 p.m. on race day.

Corrals

A corral is a blocked-off area at a race’s starting line, where runners are grouped according to their Estimated Finish Time. The fastest runners are usually in the first corrals and the slowest runners are in the corrals at the back. Corrals are enforced at many large-scale running events to ensure a safe and efficient start and to prevent line-ups at aid and water stations along the course.

Here’s how it works:

Your corral is assigned to you according to your estimated finish time, which you were asked to provide as part of your registration process. (An Estimated Finish Time calculator is available here. You must provide or update your estimated finish time by April 9, 2014)

You will be able to check your bib number and corral colour about 2 weeks before the event. After picking up your bib during Expo hours prior to Race Day, you’ll see that the colour along the bottom edge of your bib corresponds to the colour of your corral!

Once you are assigned to a corral you cannot switch to another.

Pace Bunnies

Pace BunniesPace Bunnies may look cute in their pink rabbit ears, but it’s serious business trying to run even splits (each kilometre at the same pace) for a Marathon! Thanks to the Running Room, our Pace Bunnies will help you maintain your pace and complete your run. Pace Bunnies are located in each corral at the start of the race and will run 10 minutes and walk 1 minute throughout the course.

Half Marathon Pace Times

In 2014, Pace Bunnies were offered for the following finish times:

  • 1:45 (Brian W.) Yellow corral
  • 2:00 x 2 (Connor P. & Trevor W.) Blue corral
  • 2:15 x 2 (Courtney L. & Marie L.)Pink corral
  • 2:30 x 2 (Deborah K. & Donna K.) Green corral

By following the appropriate Pace Bunny, you should be able to cross the line within your desired finish time!

Finish Line

In 2013, we moved the Finish Line to West Pender Street. We wanted you to enjoy a big Downtown finish, with thousands of spectators, entertainment, and a finish line street festival.

After all of your hard work, you’ll be congratulated by dozen of volunteers, receive your medal, and enjoy some free water and delicious food. Next, head over to Gear Checkout or make your way to the Street Festival on West Hastings Street to relax and celebrate with your friends and family!

What you should know

  • THE RUNNERS’ CHUTE IS AVAILABLE TO RUNNERS, STAFF & MEDIA ONLY.
  • KEEP MOVING FORWARD ONCE YOU CROSS THE FINISH LINE, YOU CAN MEET YOUR FRIENDS & FAMILY AT THE STREET FESTIVAL ON HASTING ST.
  • SPECTATORS CAN WATCH ON W PENDER ST (BEFORE THE FINISH LINE)
  • FRIENDS AND FAMILY MEMBERS HAVE TO WAIT FOR YOU AT STREET FESTIVAL ON HASTING ST.
  • ONCE YOU PICK YOUR FITFUL BOX, YOU HAVE THE OPTION TO PICK YOUR BELONGING OR EXIT.
  • WE WILL NOT ALLOW RE-ENTRY ONCE YOU HAVE ENTERED THE STREET FESTIVAL

Results Live Feed

Check your race results at the Results Tent at the Finish Line or on our website after the event.

Sportstats West, our official timing company is providing a live tracking feature which posts social media updates for Marathon and Half Marathoners! You can sign up to have your progress posted to your Facebook wall and/or Twitter feed, or have a friend sign up to follow you! The feature will track the runner’s chip to the timing mats on course and post updates with the runner’s location and time as they pass over the mats.

Timing mats will be located at the following points:

  • Marathon: Start Line, 13km, 21.1km, Finish Line
  • Half Marathon: Start Line, 5.5km, 10.5km, Finish Line

Check back soon to post updates to your Twitter or Facebook page!

Planning for the Weather

Please plan for all types of weather on Race Day. You should prepare for changes in the weather during the race as well as be properly equipped for post-race recovery. Consider checking warm and waterproof gear at Gear Check to be used later, or ask someone from your support crew to bring warm clothing to the Finish Line. Please note that Finish Line blankets will not be provided; while we hope for sunshine, we encourage you to bring warm post-race gear, which may include blankets.

Finisher's Food

Food is provided to every runner at the Finish Line. More details coming soon!

Entertainment

More music, more cheering, and more spectators! For 2015, we’re adding more on-course entertainment to motivate, inspire, and entertain our runners. Watch for local musical groups, community cheer groups, dance groups, and thousands and thousands of spectators along the course on May 3, 2015.

Music

There will be 20 different music groups/bands/musicians on the Marathon course!

Cheer

Represent your neighbourhood! We expect over 90,000 spectators at this year’s race, so grab your sign, and come to one of our hotspots to cheer on that special runner in your life!

Friendship Run

Meet John Stanton at the Frienship RunFrienship Run

Meet John Stanton on the day before the Marathon for a fun run that will stretch your legs and relax you before your big race!

Meet your pace bunny and get a few last minute tips from John Stanton. After, head out for a short
scenic fun run or walk to loosen up your legs and work out any last minute nervous energy.

More info at Denman Running Room Store | Suite 103, 679 Denman Street | Vancouver, BC |ph: (604) 684-9771

Legacy Runners

Legacy runners will be provided with a special 15, 20 or 25 years Legacy Club Runners bib.

20 and 25 years Legacy Club Runners will have priority access for package pickup. You can find more details and a list of the Legacy Runners here

Road Closures

The event follows a rolling road closure/opening protocol. This means that roads will close and later re-open as runners pass through the course; NO roads are closed for the entire duration of the race.

Consequently, the BMO Vancouver Half Marathon has an event time requirement of 4 hours. Participants must maintain an 10-minute per kilometre pace (approximately) and complete the half marathon distance—Start Line to Finish Line—within the four-hour event time requirement. 

If you or someone you know lives along the Half Marathon course, or if you are traveling to and from Vancouver for the event, please be aware that extensive street closures will take place on Race Day. Further, “No Parking” zones along the course will be enforced in the early morning hours on Race Day.

More information about road closures is available on our Frequently Asked Questions page and on our Road Closure page.

Clocks and Mile Markers

The Half Marathon course is marked every kilometre and every five miles.

Digital clocks are positioned at the Start Line, Halfway Point, and Finish Line. Digital clocks are synced with the official Start Time but please note that digital clocks at the Finish Line will display “unofficial” finish times–”official” finish times are unique to each individual runner’s chip, and therefore cannot be determined from looking at a digital clock.

Note: Corrals or groups of Half Marathon runners are released in intervals to ensure safe emergency access to Vancouver’s major hospital and to avoid congestions at stations. AIMS officials have ratified and sanctioned this event.

Visually Impaired Policy

Visually impaired participants are welcome, and must use a guide as well as be comfortable with being placed in the first corral (with Elite Runners) at the Start Line. For more information, please contact Runner Services or call 604-872-2928.

Wheelchair Athletes

Athletes with racing wheelchairs are welcome to participate in the Half Marathon and 8KM events only. Hand-cycles are prohibited. Please indicate that you would like to register as a wheelchair athlete by emailing registration@bmovanmarathon.ca or calling 604-872-2928. Arrangements can be made to transport a participant’s non-racing wheelchair to the Finish Line if requested.

We will allow individuals with a disability to be pushed in a race approved wheelchair in the Half Marathon only. Both participants must be registered; please contact registration@bmovanmarathon.ca or call 604.872.2928 to register. Escorts will be required to have the wheelchair tethered to their body (arm, wrist or waist) to ensure the wheelchair does not leave their company for the duration of the event. The Vancouver International Marathon Society reserves the right at any time to revoke the privilege of these participants if a safety risk is determined.

All wheelchair participants must submit a picture of their race wheelchair for approval prior to April 25, 2015. Please email registration@bmovanmarathon.ca. For all sub 50 minute wheelchair participants in the Half Marathon, you may be force to slow your pace if the course comissar representative from AIMS/BC Athletics/BC Wheelchair determines there is a road safety issue.

* Start time details subject to change