The Fall 2021 marathon season began last weekend, with the Vienna City Marathon. The pandemic is not over, and as it continues, regionally and globally, sporting events will have to consider all kinds of situations. Here’s a bit of the upcoming fall season, a season unique in marathon annals.
Portland was canceled just prior to the marathon by the sponsor due to outbreaks of COVID in Portland, Oregon and environs.
1. Vienna City Marathon just happened, some fine performances, but also a DQ due to someone not wearing an approved racing flat. (September 12, 2021).
2. The upcoming Berlin Marathon (September 26, 2021) will have Kenenisa Bekele showcasing the iconic Berlin marathon course, which has been responsible for marathon world records galore. As Kenenisa is running NYC in 41 days, just how much effort the Ethiopian star will put into Berlin. Note also, due to the pandemic, the numbers will be capped at 25,000 from the normal 40,000-43,000.
3. The Virgin London Marathon (October 3, 2021), just brought in Nissan as fully electric cars as the official auto sponsor. New Balance is surely hoping for big success at London and New York as the challenges of the last year have limited their sponsorship value. Big elite fields in London this year, plus 50,000 on the course and also a virtual marathon at 50,000. What does this virtual marathon idea really mean? will it stand around for a while? Out of respect for the pandemic, or pragmatism, London will be held in 2022 in the Fall, and not in its historic spring schedule.
4. Bank of America Chicago Marathon (October 10, 2021) is featuring strong US fields with some fine Kenyan and Ethiopian runners. The finest marathon in the Midwest will showcase Chicago once again, after having been canceled in 2020.
5. Boston Marathon will be held on Monday, October 11, 2021. It is a strange year for marathons, and Boston was hit for being held on Indigenous Peoples’ Day. It is terribly difficult repositioning a historic marathon like Boston or Chicago, sure glad that we did not have to make the decision.
6. 2021 TCS NYC Marathon (November 7, 2021) is one of the rights of all that is coming back in 2021 and it seems that all things are on go. The challenges of being so late in the season and possible pandemic returns cause some challenges. Much turmoil in NYRR this past two years, wondering if we will recognize anyone in the marathon management and club management team anymore. Big changes in TV crew coverage, we understand.
RunBlogRun will be covering all six of these marathons, plus the European marathon season with our partners, in a comibination of live, remote and partnered coverage.