I had the pleasure of running the 2013 Berlin Marathon. If you're running the Berlin Marathon and need tips on what to eat, what to see and do while you're visiting for the marathon, read my article titles "Highlights of the Abbott World Marathon Majors: Berlin, Chicago and NYC Marathons" and “Eat. Sleep. Run: Berlin”. Also if you're wondering how you can run the Berlin Marathon, click here for my article titled "How to Get Into an Abbott World Marathon Major." Another helpful article if you're running an Abbott World Marathon Major: "Make the Most of Your World Marathon Major".
The 2019 Berlin Marathon will take place on Sunday, September 29th, 2019.
WHERE TO STAY: I stayed at the Mandala Hotel when I visited. My highlights article discusses restaurant specifics and more.
Capacity Inaugural Race Largest Field Estimated Spectators Prize Purse
40,000 1974 36,527 finishers (2013) 1 Million $416,629 *
History of the Berlin Marathon
Taken from the Abbott WMM website: A group of runners from one of Germany’s most prestigious athletics clubs, SC Charlottenburg, organised the first BERLIN-MARATHON in 1974. It was not until 1981 that the race moved from the Grunewald (a big forest) into the city center of West Berlin. Supported by the three western allied forces (Britain, France and U.S.) it quickly developed into Germany’s biggest and best quality marathon. It was after the Berlin Wall collapsed in November 1989 when a new era started. On September 30, 1990, three days before reunification, the course of the Berlin Marathon led through Brandenburg Gate and both parts of Berlin. In 2001 Naoko Takahashi became the first woman to break the 2:20 barrier in Berlin. The flat and fast loop course then was changed significantly for the 2003 race. Paul Tergat, who ran the world record of 2:04:55, became the first man to cross the new finish line, passing through Brandenburg Gate – the symbol for reunification.
In 2007 and 2008 the Ethiopian world class runner Haile Gebrselassie broke the world record on the streets of Berlin: First to 2:04:26 and just one year later to 2:03:59, going sub 2:04 for the first time ever. In 2011 the, Kenyan Patrick Makau took the World record from Haile by finishing in 2:03:38. Two years later it was fellow Kenyan Wilson Kipsang to break the World record in Berlin by clocking 2:03:23. The BMW BERLIN-MARATHON has developed into one of the world’s best road races. Visit bmw-berlin-marathon.com for more information.
The Berlin Marathon course goes past most of the major monuments and ends just past the historic Brandenburg Gate.
Along the course be sure to check out the tea that it is served along with water and sports drinks! The expo before the marathon is at an old airport! It is tons of fun and very crowded! Be sure to check out these features and more in my highlights post.