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Start corrals

2014 Bank of America Chicago Marathon participants are being assigned to start corrals based on proof of qualifying and/or estimated finish times. Participants will be notified via email when start corral assignments are available. Thank you for your patience with this process.

The Bank of America Chicago Marathon helped revolutionize start operations by becoming one of the first major marathons to implement a start corral process. Start corrals evolved as a way to facilitate a safer, smoother and more efficient start for all participants. Seeding runners with a qualifying time in the fastest start corrals highlights Chicago’s global appeal to competitive runners as a place to run a personal best, qualify for Boston or even achieve a US Olympic Trials qualifying time standard.

The 2014 Bank of America Chicago Marathon’s wave start and start corral process captures the dual spirit of today’s major marathons: one that embodies a competitive runner’s test of speed and endurance, and one that celebrates the life-force of thousands of participants embracing the sport of running and a healthy and active lifestyle. At its core, the wave start and start corral process connects the first running boom’s emphasis on individual fast times and racing with the second running boom’s focus on social participation and fun.

The Chicago Marathon proudly stands out as a race that welcomes elite runners and debut marathoners alike. This year’s wave start and start corral process offers a convenient race day experience for all participants:

  • All participants will be assigned to a start corral (American Development, Corral A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, J or K)
  • Participants assigned to American Development and Start Corrals A, B, C, D and E start in Wave 1 at 7:30 a.m.
  • Participants assigned to Start Corrals F, G, H, J and K start in Wave 2 at 8:00 a.m.
  • The deadline to update or change your start corral assignment is Monday, August 25.

Start corral placement

  • Assignment to the American Development Corral and Start Corrals A, B and C are based on submitted proof of a qualifying time from a half marathon or full marathon run on or after January 1, 2012.
  • Assignment to Start Corrals D and E are based on submitted proof of a qualifying time from a half marathon or full marathon run on or after January 1, 2010 or on your estimated finish time.* If you would like to update your estimated finish time you can do so through the Athlete Center.
  • Assignment to Corrals F, G, H, J and K is based on the estimated finish time you entered when you registered for the Chicago Marathon. If you would like to update this time you can do so through the Athlete Center.

*As corral capacity allows

Start Corrals


How to submit proof of qualifying time for Corrals A-E

If you have qualified for a start corral based on your results from the 2012-2013 Bank of America Chicago Marathon (Corrals A, B and C) or 2010 – 2013 Bank of America Chicago Marathon (Corrals D and E) you do NOT need to submit proof of qualification. However, you must verify the correct corral assignment has been made by accessing the Athlete Center.

Similarly, if you registered for the Marathon as a time qualifier via the guaranteed entry, then you do NOT need to submit proof of qualification. Please verify the correct corral assignment has been made by accessing the Athlete Center.

Start corrals will be assigned on a first-come, first-served basis. Assignment to a start corral is not guaranteed. Participants will not receive email confirmation of updates, changes or reassignments. All participants should verify their corral assignments by accessing the Athlete Center.

If you would like to be assigned or change your assignment for Start Corrals A – E, you can do so by submitting a qualifying time. Your qualifying time must be:

  • For Corrals A – C, from a marathon or half-marathon run on a certified course on or after January 1, 2012
  • For Corrals D – E, from a marathon or half-marathon run on a certified course on or after January 1, 2010
  • Submitted by Monday, August 25, 2014
  • Submitted by email to startcorrals@chicagomarathon.com

Emailed qualifying times may be submitted in one of the following formats:

  • A screen shot of your individual race result inserted into the body of your email (the race name and date must be visible along with your result)
  • An attachment in the form of a finisher’s certificate
  • A link to your online race result*:
    • An individual results page (preferred)
    • An overall, searchable results page

*Please test all links prior to sending as many redirect to general event websites


Start corral descriptions

Wave 1 corrals

Start Corral A
Secure starting area directly behind the American Development Corral for all qualified participants. Qualifications for Start Corral A are as follows:

  • Half marathon time (Men): < 1:20:01
  • Half marathon time (Women): < 1:25:01
  • Marathon time: < 3:15:01
  • Wave start time: 7:31 a.m. (CST)

Start Corral B
Secure starting area directly behind Start Corral A for all qualified participants. Qualifications for Start Corral B are as follows:

  • Half marathon time: < 1:35:01
  • Marathon time: < 3:35:01
  • Wave start time: 7: 33 a.m. (CST)

Start Corral C
Secure starting area directly behind Start Corral B for all qualified participants. Qualifications for Start Corral C are as follows:

  • Half marathon time: <1:45:01
  • Marathon time: <3:45:01
  • Wave start time: 7:38 a.m. (CST)

Start Corral D
Secure starting area directly behind Start Corral C for all qualified participants. Qualifications for Start Corral D are as follows:

  • Half marathon time: < 1:50:01
  • Marathon time: < 3:55:01
  • Wave start time: 7:45 a.m. (CST)

Start Corral E
Secure starting area directly behind Start Corral D for all qualified participants. Qualifications for Start Corral E are as follows:

Ages 18 – 49

  • Half marathon time: < 1:52:01
  • Marathon time: < 4:00:01

Ages 50 – 59

  • Half marathon time: < 1:55:01
  • Marathon time: < 4:10:01

Ages 60 – Up

  • Half Marathon time: < 2:05:01
  • Marathon time: < 4:30:01

Approx start time: 7:50 a.m. (CST)

Wave 2 Corrals

Start Corral F

  • Estimated finish time: 4:01:00 – 4:15:00
  • Anticipated pace: < 9:44/mile
  • Approx. start time:8:02 a.m. (CST)

Start Corral G

  • Estimated finish time: 4:15:01 – 4:45:00
  • Anticipated pace: < 10:53/mile
  • Approx. start time: 8:05 a.m. (CST)

Start Corral H

  • Estimated finish time: 4:45:01 – 4:59:55
  • Anticipated pace: < 11:27/mile
  • Approx. start time: 8:07 a.m. (CST)

Start Corral J

  • Estimated finish time: 4:59:56 – 5:00:05
  • Anticipated pace: < 11:27/mile
  • Approx. start time: 8:11 a.m. (CST)

Start Corral K

  • Estimated finish time: 5:00:06 – 6:30:00
  • Anticipated pace: < 14:53/mile
  • Approx. start time: 8:15 a.m. (CST)

Frequently asked questions

What are start corrals?
Start corrals are designated start areas designed to facilitate a more efficient and convenient race start for all participants. Wave 1 Start Corrals American Development, A, B and C are assigned based on a verified qualifying time. Start Corrals D and E are assigned based on a verified qualifying time or based on the estimated marathon finish time provided during registration. Wave 2 Start Corrals F, G, H, J and K are assigned based on the estimated marathon finish time provided during registration.

How can I qualify for a Wave 1 start corral?
Start Corrals American Development, A, B, C, D, and E are designed to offer a quicker and smoother start for all qualified participants. Wave 1 Start Corrals American Development, A, B and C are assigned based on a verified qualifying time. Start Corrals D and E are assigned based on a verified qualifying time or based on the estimated marathon finish time provided during registration. The deadline to submit proof of qualification is Monday, August 25, 2014.

Can I switch from one start corral to another?
If you qualify for a “faster” corral, you can be moved up to a faster corral by submitting a “faster” qualifying time prior to the August 25, 2014 deadline. If you were automatically assigned to a “faster” start corral but do not wish to start in that corral, you can be assigned to a later starting start corral by submitting a request to startcorrals@chicagomarathon.com. Please note you can also revise your anticipated finishing time by accessing the Athlete Center.

I have been automatically assigned to a Wave 1 start corral. How did this happen?
Some participants are automatically assigned to a start corral based on their qualifying performance at the 2010-2013 Bank of America Chicago Marathon.

I submitted a new qualifying time. Will I receive confirmation that my start corral has been changed?
No. You will not receive confirmation that your start corral has been changed. You must verify the change has been made by accessing the Athlete Center. Please allow three to five business days for updates to be made.

What is considered acceptable proof of a qualifying time?
Proof of a qualifying time may be submitted by email in the form of a screen shot inserted in the body of your email (the race name and date must be visible along with your result), a link to an individual results page or a link to an overall, searchable results page. Please test all links prior to sending as many redirect to general event websites.

Are start corrals guaranteed?
Start corral assignments are not guaranteed – assignments are made on a first come, first served basis until the corrals reach their respective capacities.

Can I switch from one start corral to another on race day?
No, all participants must start in their assigned start corral on race day. Unlike previous years, you cannot move back to a later start corral on race day. All start corral changes must be made prior to the August 25, 2014 deadline.

I would like to run the Marathon with my friend. Is it possible for us to be assigned to the same start corral?
If you would like to start the race with another person(s) in Corrals A to C, you and the other person(s) will need to submit proof of qualifying times for the same corral.

If you would like to start the race with another person(s) in Corrals D to E, you and the other person(s) can and should submit a qualifying time for the same corral OR each enter the same estimated finish times at the Athlete Center.*

If you would like to start the race with another person(s) in Corrals F to K, be sure that you and the other person(s) have entered the same estimated finish times at the Athlete Center.

All start corral change requests must be submitted prior to the final start corral assignment deadline of August 25. There will  be no start corral changes at the Expo.

Please note that participants can no longer move back to a slower start corral on race day.

* As capacity allows; no corral placements are guaranteed.

If the Nike+ Pace Team I want to run with is not offered in my start corral, what should I do?
A Pace Bib will not give you entry into a particular start corral, only your Race Bib will allow entry. If you were unable to gain entry into a seeded start corral, we encourage you to line up as close as possible to the front of the start corral in which you’ve been placed.

Can I be reassigned to a different start corral at the Health & Fitness Expo?
No. The deadline to request a change is August 25, 2014. No reassignments will be made following this deadline.

I missed qualifying for a Start Wave 1 corral by a few seconds. Will you make an exception?
No. Corral qualifying standards are strictly adhered to.

If you have questions, please email startcorrals@chicagomarathon.com

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