The 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials Marathon course was finalized this week, and it will take Olympic hopefuls through both downtown Los Angeles and parts of South Los Angeles—passing by the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, Staples Center and more. The Olympic Trials Marathon will take place Feb. 13, with the top three men and top three women earning the chance to run for the U.S. at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics. The Trials will have $600,000 in prize money up for grabs.
The Los Angeles Marathon and USA Track & Field announced Thursday that the U.S. Olympic Trials course has been completed. Similar to the courses created for the Olympic Trials races in 2008 (Boston/New York) and 2012 (Houston), the criterium-style course in Los Angeles is mostly flat, and was set up to be fan-friendly, as spectators will be able to see runners pass several times from wherever they set up.
The race will start near Staples Center on the west side of downtown Los Angeles, and racers will go on one 2.2-mile loop north of the start line into the heart of downtown, turning around at roughly 6th and Flower. Racers will then run back toward the start line and start the first of four 6-mile loops that travel into South Los Angeles down Figueroa Street. The course will take runners through the campus of the University of Southern California and pass by Exposition Park and the LA Coliseum—where Joan Benoit Samuelson finished up her gold medal marathon at the 1984 Olympics.
The race will finish where it started near Staples Center and the LA Convention Center. While the course has a lot of turns, mostly around the LA Coliseum, there aren’t any significant hills—which could net some fast times.
View a close-up of the course map here.