Random Drawing Overview

The random drawings for the 2018 Big Sur Marathon have now concluded. Drawings for the April 28, 2019 event will begin on July 15, 2018. The Groups & Couples drawing will be first, followed by Loyalty, Locals, First-Timers, and the final Last Chance drawing. More information will be available mid-to-late June 2018.

2018 Drawing timeline:

Groups & Couples: 7/15 – 7/24
Loyalty: 7/29 – 8/7
Locals: 7/29 – 8/7
First-timers: 7/29 – 8/7
Last Chance: 8/19 – 8/25

Groups & Couples

Drawing for Groups & Couples

This drawing is for groups of 2-to-15 people who want to enter only if everyone in the group gets in.

Only the designated leader for the couple or group needs to enter the drawing under a pre-deterrmined group/couple name. The number of people in the group also needs to be entered.

1. This drawing is open for groups of from 2-15 individuals, each of whom want to run the 2018 Big Sur Marathon but only if everyone in the group is chosen.

2. Only a single, designated group leader enters the drawing on behalf of the group. There is no entry fee for the drawing.

3. The group leader creates and uses a unique group name, which serves as an identifier in the random selection process.

4. The group leader enters the full names and emails of everyone in the group.

5. The Groups & Couples drawing will be a stand-alone category with winners announced prior to the opening of the other drawings. If a group is not chosen, members do have the option of entering other drawings (Loyalty, Locals, First-Timers or Last Chance). There are no considerations for couples or groups in the individual drawings.

First Timers

For those who have never finished the 26.2-mile Big Sur Marathon.


For those who have finished one or more 26.2-mile Big Sur Marathons. During registration, the entrant must indicate the number of official finishes and the year of the most recent Big Sur Marathon finish for verification purposes.


For both veteran and first-time marathoners whose primary residence is in Monterey County, CA (939XX zip code). Proof of residency may be required if selected.

Last Chance

For anyone not selected or who didn’t participate in earlier drawings. It is for individuals only with no considerations for groups or couples.

  • There is no fee to enter any of the drawings
  • You may enter a drawing category only one time; duplicate entries will be removed prior to selection.
  • You may be eligible to enter up to three categories. For example, Monterey County residents who have run Big Sur before can enter the Locals and Loyalty categories. If they are not selected, they could then enter the Last Chance drawing.
  • All selections are done by a computerized random selection program. The date you apply for a drawing within each registration period has no influence on the odds of being selected.
  • Those selected in a drawing will be sent a unique registration link by email and will have a limited time to officially register and pay for the race.
  • Questions? Read our FAQ HERE.

Things to Know Before You Enter the Marathon

There is a strict 6-hour finish time limit. This is a pace of 13:45 per mile (8:33 per km). This is part of our permit to use Highway 1 and is non-negotiable. If you are close to a six-hour finisher on a flatter course, you may want to consider running our 21-Miler instead of the marathon.

Big Sur is a challenging course with numerous hills and frequent head winds. Many runners consider our race a good 10-20 minutes slower than flatter and less windy events. In addition, many runners stop to take pictures, adding to their times. Plan accordingly with your training and pacing plans.

Marathon runners who do not maintain a 13:45 per mile pace at all times may be removed from the course at any time for safety.

There are time cut-offs along the course based on finishing under six hours. Runners who reach these locations after the posted times will be transported to the finish area and will not receive a finish time or medallion. Those who do not reach mile 21.2 by 11:50 AM will be stopped and transported by bus back to the finish.

Official finish times, medallions, certificates, and post-race refreshments are only available for runners who finish under six hours (chip time).

There are no entry refunds, transfers or deferments. Booking Protect, a third-party insurance policy, will be available for purchase during registration.

If you understand these conditions and are ready to enter for 2018, read on!