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What You Need to Know about the 2016 NYC Marathon

Details on where and when to watch it, who is racing, and celebrities you might spot on the course.

Basic Details

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The 46th running of the New York City Marathon will be held on Sunday, Nov. 6. It has been held every year since 1970, except for 2012—when it was canceled because of Hurricane Sandy. This marks the 40th anniversary of the five-borough course that starts in Staten Island and ends in Central Park. The racing begins at 8:30 a.m. EST with the pro wheelchair competitors. The pro women will start at 9:20 a.m. followed by the pro men and wave 1 of the rest of the field.

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How to Watch the Race


From 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. ET on Sunday, Nov. 6, live coverage of the race will be broadcasted on ESPN2 and via WatchESPN for those who have video subscriptions from affiliated providers. ESPN commentators John Anderson and Sage Steele will serve as lead announcers with support from 13 nationally and locally recognized commentators, reporters, and analysts. Spectators can also watch pre-race and continuing coverage of the race on ESPN3 from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m. ET, as well as a view of the finish line from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET.

For those living in the New York tri-state area, tune into local WABC-TV, Channel 7 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. ET to catch the live race broadcast. Live pre-race coverage will start from 7 a.m. ET, and on Friday, Nov. 4, from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. ET, and Saturday, Nov. 5, from 7:30 to 8 p.m. ET, WABC-TV will also feature special coverage of additional race-weekend events.

On Mobile Devices

No TV? No problem. Download either the WatchABC (for New York residents) or WatchESPN (for national audiences) through the App Store or Google Play Store for Free, and be able to catch all the action on your laptop, smartphone and/or tablet.

On Twitter

We’ll be live-tweeting from the race on @runcompetitor. Follow us for the latest race day updates.

In Person

Our on-the-course spectator’s guide to watching the NYC Marathon will help you find the best places along the course to view the race that even the locals may not know about.

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How to Track Runners

Know someone (or maybe several people) running this year’s NYC Marathon? You can track up to 20 runners, and stay up to date on the latest race-week and race-day events, by downloading the 2016 TCS New York City Marathon mobile app. Or use Live Results through the NYRR site to track up to 15 runners on race day.

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The Course

The New York City Marathon is held on a point-to-point course that sends runners through all five of the city’s boroughs. It starts in Staten Island, then sends runners through Brooklyn and Queens before entering Manhattan briefly and then looping through a portion of the Bronx. The final 5 miles of the course are back in Manhattan, mostly winding through Central Park to the finish line. The New York Road Runners have a great map of the course and also an animated video of the course.

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Elite Races

American Dathan Ritzenhein is expected to be one of the top contenders in the men’s elite field of Sunday’s race, which isn’t quite as deep as it has been in recent years but still has the likes of Kenya’s Stanley Biwott (2:03:51) and Ethiopian Lelisa Desisa (2:04:45). Other top Americans include Abdi Abdirahman (2:08:56), Ryan Vail (2:10:57), Matt Llano (2:12:28), Tyler Pennel (2:13:32) and Craig Leon (2:13:52).

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There are several compelling stories in the women’s elite races, but probably the best is the marathon debut of Molly Huddle. The the American record holder of the 10,000 meters on the track has been the most dominant U.S. road runner in recent years from 5K to the half marathon. She’ll have plenty of fast international runners to contend with, including two-time defending champion Mary Keitany of Kenya (2:18:37) and Aselefech Mergia of Ethiopia (2:19:31). Other top Americans include Annie Bersagel (2:28:29), Janet Bawcom (2:29:24), Sarah Hall (2:30:06), Esther Atkins (2:33:15), Neely Gracey (2:35:00) and Kim Conley (debut).

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Celebs, Expo, Shoes and Other Stuff

Past American Idol contestant, Jax, will be one of the many celebrities running the New York City Marathon for charity. Her music career seemed to be taking off, but then she was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. The 20-year-old New Yorker is using running to overcome it and keep her on a healthy track.

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