May 31, 2023



CARMEL, CA – The runners have spoken, and the Big Sur Marathon has been named the top marathon in California.

RaceRaves, the leading online race finder and reviews community for runners and endurance athletes, has announced the winners of its 2023 “Runners Choice: Best Marathons in the U.S.” poll. The top marathon in each state was crowned based on votes from runners across the country along with ratings and reviews on

The authoritative new guide will help first-timers and seasoned runners alike build their all-star marathon wish list.  Common themes among the winning events include exceptional production and race-day support, strong community involvement, and a marathon course that showcases the beauty and character of the local region.

“I can’t say enough about how special the honor of Best Marathon in California is to us, especially in a strong running state like ours.  This recognition is a true testament to our community and supporters, as well as the year-round efforts of all who are involved in race weekend including our volunteers, many of which are local non-profit groups, our board of directors, the events committee, and the Blistering Pace Race Management team.  Thank you from us to you,” stated Josh Priester, Executive Director of Big Sur Marathon Foundation.

As one of the premier bucket-list events in the country, it’s no surprise Big Sur plays the role of David among the Goliaths of the California marathon scene. Runners rave about the “insanely beautiful” point-to-point course with its soaring redwoods and rugged coastline, while distinctive touches like taiko drummers (mile 10), a tuxedo-clad pianist on the iconic Bixby Bridge (mile 13) and creative mile markers heighten the allure of Running on the Ragged Edge of the Western World. Due to the race’s small field size (limited to 4,500) and outsized popularity, entry is based on a series of random drawings, with 400 slots set aside for Boston Marathon participants looking to conquer the prestigious Boston 2 Big Sur Challenge.

“The ‘Best Marathons in the U.S.’ initiative exemplifies our passion for the sport and our commitment to helping runners discover the best races across the country,” said RaceRaves Co-founder Mike Sohaskey. “We’re thrilled at the enthusiastic response from runners nationwide and congratulate the Big Sur Marathon on this well-deserved accolade.”

Registration opens in late summer for the next edition of Big Sur, which takes place on Sunday, April 28, 2024, welcoming runners of all abilities with distances including 5K, 12K, 11-Miler, 21-Miler and of course, the Marathon.

The complete list of winning marathons, by state and by month, plus a profile of each is available on


About the Big Sur Marathon Foundation

The Big Sur Marathon Foundation is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to create beautiful running events that promote health and benefit the community. Under the brand are the Big Sur International Marathon in April and the Monterey Bay Half Marathon in November. Each year, the organization donates nearly $300,000 to local nonprofits via their grant program to community volunteer groups.

About RaceRaves

Founded in 2014, is the leading online race finder and reviews community for runners around the world to share their experiences and find their next challenge. The company’s robust race database, intuitive search tools, finisher reviews from all 50 states and 90+ countries, and compelling editorial content establish RaceRaves as a trusted resource for runners and endurance athletes. With its authentic voice and fast-growing audience, RaceRaves helps brands and events connect with runners of all abilities.

For more information about the Big Sur Marathon, contact

For more information about RaceRaves or its “Best Marathons in the U.S.” initiative, please contact Katie Ho at