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Countdown to the big race, October 13, 2019

Start corrals

The Bank of America Chicago Marathon proudly stands out as a race that welcomes elite runners and debut marathoners alike. The wave and start corral process offers a more optimal race day experience for all runners.

Your preliminary start corral assignment will be available Friday, June 29, 2018.

Preliminary start corral assignments will be based on the chart below, the information submitted during the application process (qualifying and estimated finish times) and previous Chicago Marathon results.

Once preliminary start corrals are assigned you will have the opportunity to request a change to your assignment either by providing proof of a new qualifying time (American Development, Corrals A, B, C, D or E in Wave 1) or by updating your estimated finish time (Corrals F, G or H in Wave 2 and J, K or L in Wave 3).

Please note:

  • Qualifying finish times need to be attained since January 1, 2016 on a certified course.
  • For information and instructions regarding placement in the American Development Program corral please visit our American Development Program page.
  • You may request a Wave 1 corral assignment by providing proof of qualifying time, with a link to your results, to startcorrals@chicagomarathon.com through 5 p.m. (U.S. Central Time) on Tuesday, August 14.
  • For placement in a Wave 2 or Wave 3 corral, you may update your estimated finishing time within your Participant Account through 5 p.m. (U.S. Central Time) on Tuesday, August 15. Proof of a qualifying time is not required for placement in Wave 2 or Wave 3 corrals.
  • Start corrals will be assigned or re-assigned on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • Assignment to a specific start corral is not guaranteed.

Important dates

Tuesday, August 14 (5 p.m. U.S. Central Time): Deadline to update or request a change to your start corral assignment.

Tuesday, August 21: Final corral assignments will be posted.


2018 Start corral standards

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, C, D, and E) are assigned based on a verified qualifying time. Wave 2 (F, G and H) and Wave 3 (J, K and L) start corrals are assigned based on the estimated finish time you entered on your race application.

Are start corrals guaranteed?
No.  Assignments are made on a first-come, first-served basis until the corrals reach their respective capacities.

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 2016-2017 Bank of America Chicago Marathon or based other past performances.

How can I qualify for a Wave 1 start corral?
Wave 1 start corrals (American Development, A, B, C, D, and E) are assigned based on a verified qualifying time.

If you wish to be assigned to a Wave 1 start corral, you will need to submit proof of a qualifying time achieved since January 1, 2016 on a certified course. This may be submitted to startcorrals@chicagomarathon.com in the form of an official finisher’s certificate or a link directly to your results. The deadline to update or request a change to your start corral assignment is 5 p.m. (U.S. Central Time) on Tuesday, August 14.

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 14 deadline. If you were automatically assigned to a start corral but do not wish to start in that corral, you can request a new corral by emailing startcorrals@chicagomarathon.com.

My relative, friend has been assigned to a different start corral. How can we run together?
If a relative or friends is assigned to a Wave 1 start corral, you must have a half marathon or marathon time that qualifies you for that corral. If you do not have a time that qualifies you for a Wave 1 start corral, both of you can request a Wave 2 start corral assignment by emailing startcorrals@chicagomarathon.com.

I submitted a qualifying time by email. Will I receive confirmation that my start corral has been changed?
No. Participants will receive an automatic response only, indicating that the email was received. Runners will be responsible for checking any changes in their Participant Account.

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.  All start corral changes must be made prior to the deadline at 5 p.m. (U.S. Central Time) on Tuesday, August 14.

If the Nike+ Run Club Pacers I want to run with are not offered in my start corral, what should I do?
A pace bib will not give you entry into a particular start corral. If you want to run with a Nike+ Run Club Pacer in Wave 1, you must qualify for and/or be assigned to the start corral. For more information visit the Nike+ Run Club Pacer page.

Can I be reassigned to a different start corral at the Abbott Health & Fitness Expo?
No. The deadline to request a change is 5 p.m. (U.S. Central Time) on Tuesday, August 14. No reassignments will be made following this deadline.

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

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

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