Event Date:April 30, 2023

The random drawing for the 2023 Big Sur Marathon begins August 25, 2022.

The Big Sur International Marathon is a point-to-point course run on scenic CA Highway 1 from Big Sur to Carmel the last Sunday each April. Towering redwoods, crashing waves, coastal mountains and verdant pastures are featured on this bucket list course. The centerpiece of the course is the iconic Bixby Bridge, located at the halfway point of the race, where you’ll enjoy the unique site and sound of a tuxedo-wearing concert pianist playing a Yamaha AvantGuard N3 piano.

 

RACE OVERVIEW

Race Date

April 30, 2023

Start Time

6:35 AM PDT

Course Time Limit

The Big Sur Marathon has a six hour time limit and will officially end at 1 PM when the course will reopen to regular two-way vehicular traffic. There will be NO support of any kind on the course (aid stations, medical, communications, etc.) for anyone not maintaining a 6-hour pace. Those who do not reach marathon mile 15.2 by 10:30 AM or mile 21.2 by 11:50 AM will not be allowed to proceed past that point and will be provided transportation to the finish. No finish medallions or official times will be provided for anyone finishing after 1 PM.

ENTRY LIMITS AND QUALIFICATIONS

The Marathon is limited to about 4,500 total entrants. All entrants must be 16 years or older, in good health and well trained.¬† BSIM is a challenging course with a 6-hour cut-off time (13:45 per-mile pace). ¬†ONLY THOSE PARTICIPANTS WHO ARE ABLE TO COMPLETE THE RACE IN 6 HOURS (chip time) WILL RECEIVE A BIG SUR INTERNATIONAL MARATHON FINISHERS’ MEDALLION, AN ONLINE FINISHERS’ CERTIFICATE OR BE LISTED AS AN OFFICIAL FINISHER. No exceptions!

REGISTRATION & ENTRY FEES

The random drawing for the marathon distance begins August 25th, 2022, and is open for two weeks. There is only ONE drawing category for the 2023 race. Marathon Tours, VIP, Charity Bibs, and Youth Fitness entries also open on August 25th on a first-come, first-served basis.

The 2023 race fees are as follows:

Domestic Participants – $265

International Participants – $299

Monterey County Participants – $215

Please note: If you plan to run Boston 2 Big Sur, DO NOT enter the random drawing. Registration for B2B opens on a first-come, first-served basis on September 22, 2022.

COMMUNICATIONS

Prior to race weekend you will receive a series of communications containing important information. If you have a Gmail  account, be sure to check your All Mail folder as our eBlast or eNewsletter may not land in your inbox. Communications are sent via our registration platform, haku.

CONFIRMATION

Online entries will be confirmed by e-mail from haku. If you have spam filters and/or firewalls in place, we cannot guarantee you will receive this email. You may also confirm your entry by calling haku at 831.713.2227.

TRAINING PROGRAMS

During registration you will have the opportunity to include an adaptive training program based on your fitness and the time you have to prepare for the distance you’ve chosen. Both complimentary and premium (your cost) coaching options will be available to you through our partners at Runcoach. Our goal is to provide you with a host of training options to meet you where you are in your running journey. Click here to access your training plan!

START

The marathon begins at 6:35 AM at the Big Sur Station in Big Sur.  To view a map of the start area, click HERE (Please note that the map is subject to change).

COURSE

The course is from Big Sur to Carmel on scenic Highway 1, the nation’s first nationally-designated Scenic Highway. The course is USATF, AIMS, and World Athletics certified and is an official Boston Marathon qualifier. The course reopens to traffic at 1:00 PM, an approximate 6-hour course limit, just over a 13:45 pace per mile.

Due to the nature of the course, no animals, pacers, skates, skateboards, bikes, wheelchairs, hand cranks, baby joggers or children/infants in backpacks are allowed on the course. No bandits. No exceptions.

To view the marathon course map and elevation chart, click HERE.

Start elevation: 356′
Finish elevation:¬† 10′
Total elevation gain:¬† +2,182′
Total elevation loss:¬†¬† -2,528′

AID STATIONS

There will be water (in cups or, preferably, by filling your own hydration device) and Gatorade Endurance at all aid stations.  There will be fruit at later stations. GU will be available at stations 5 (mile 12.2) and 8 (mile 18.9). There will be refill stations for personal hydration devices at the end of every station. Aid station locations are as follows:

#1:  Mile 2.6
#2:  Mile 4.8
#3:  Mile 7.8
#4:  Mile 10.4
#5:  Mile 12.2
#6:  Mile 14.7
#7:  Mile 16.8
#8:  Mile 18.9
#9:  Mile 21.1
#10: Mile 23
#11: Mile 24.5

TIMEKEEPING - PACE

Bib chip timing is provided by South Valley Endurance.  There will be split mats near miles 5, 8.1, 12.1, 15.2, 17, 21.2 and 24. There are large mile markers on the marathon course but there are no clocks or split callers. There are not separate mile markers on the course for the 21-Miler or 11-Miler.

ELITE RUNNERS

The Big Sur International Marathon does not offer prize money, appearance money, hotel, or travel assistance. Interested elite athletes may contact the race through the email info@bsim,org to see what, if any, provisions may be available.

MARATHON AWARDS

To be eligible for overall and divisional awards, one must show a time crossing all split timing mats near miles 5, 8.1, 12.1, 15.2, 17, 21.2 and 24.

Awards (based on GUN, not chip time) go to the top five male and female finishers and the top three masters (age 40 and over) male and female.  Divisional (age group) awards are based on CHIP time and are presented five deep in five year incremental age divisions, both male and female, after 16-19. Double-dipping is permitted.

Special division awards are also given to both male and females three deep in the following categories (based on CHIP time):

  • Monterey County Resident
  • Active Military

You are not automatically assigned to a special division.  You must check a specific box during registration to be eligible for awards in that division.  You may only pick one special division.

Awards will be given three deep to both male and female participants under age 40 and the top three masters men and women (age 40 and over) in the Boston 2 Big Sur Challenge based on the fastest combined 2023 Boston and Big Sur times.

The awards ceremony will begin at 11:30 AM in the finish area (time subject to change).

There are also awards in the Marathon Relay. There are no age group or overall awards in the 21-Miler, 11-Miler, 12K, or 5K.

COURSE RECORDS

Male: Brad Hawthorne, 1987, 2:16:39
Female: Svetlana Vasilyeva, 1996, 2:41:34

BUS TRANSPORTATION

All participants are transported from one of several Monterey Peninsula locations to the start at Big Sur Station. Free bus transportation to the start is for official runners only. Each participant must show race bib number and bus ticket upon loading. Bus loading begins at 3:30 a.m. Why do the buses leave so early? It takes one hour for a bus to travel SAFELY to Big Sur along a narrow winding road in the dark. after unloading, it takes one hour for a bus to travel back to Carmel. All buses must be back to Carmel prior to 6:45 a.m. so the Marathon finish and 5K/12K start area can be constructed on the roadway. Therefore, allowing for possible delays, the final buses must leave for the start by 4:30 am. Because not all buses can leave at the last minute, bus departures are staggered between 3:30 and 4:00 a.m. The bottom line is that moving thousands of runners from multiple locations to several start destinations along a narrow, winding road in the dark TAKES TIME!

Click HERE to view bus departure times and locations in 2022 (expected to be similar in 2023).

IPODS AND AUDIO DEVICES

We strongly discourage the use of iPods, headphones, ear buds or other MP3 or headphone devices in any of our events. We believe using an audio device will compromise your safety and that of others by hindering your ability to hear verbal instructions or commands from race officials including course marshals on bicycles or to hear vehicles in the lane next to you or emergency vehicles on the course. You are sharing a narrow lane with runners of different speeds completing different race distances. In addition, there is live traffic in the land-side lane of Highway 1 during the race. You must be aware of your surroundings at all times

Because the safety of all of our participants and volunteers is our first priority, we ask that you leave your headsets at home and instead let the incredible scenery, the sounds of waves crashing against the rocks, the music we provide on the course, and your fellow runners serve as your motivation and inspiration.

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