Marine Corps Marathon Lottery Opens

Marine Corps Marathon lottery

The 2007 Marine Corps Marathon (Photo: U.S. Navy Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Monica McCoy)

If you want to run the 2014 Marine Corps marathon in Arlington, Va., and Washington, D.C., on October 26, now’s your chance throw your running shoe in the ring. Registration for the Marine Corps Marathon lottery opened Sunday, February 23 at 12 p.m. EST. The lottery will be open through Saturday, March 15 at noon EDT.

Runners ages 14 and older can register to enter the random draw any time in that 21-day period. Unlike years past, it is not first come, first served. Registrants will be notified via e-mail of the lottery’s results on March 19.

Registration is $110. There is no fee to enter the lottery. Runners will only be charged if they get a spot in the race.

Marine Corps Marathon lottery

Marine volunteers give water to runners at the 2010 Marine Corps Marathon. (Photo: Sgt. Jimmy D. Shea/US Marine Corps)

The Marine Corps Marathon lottery is new to the race known as “The People’s Marathon.” Last year’s event fielding 23,473 finishers sold out in two hours, but not without a major hiccup when the registration site run by crashed amidst the swell of runners logging on to sign-up.

I chronicled the snafu from registration (Marine Corps Marathon and Runner’s World Challenge registration opens) to the crash (Marine Corps Marathon sells out amidst system failures) in my column at The Washington Times Communities page, and wrote an op-ed arguing why the race should move to a lottery (Marine Corps Marathon Shows Lotteries Are Best). The event was such a debacle for that they issued an apology and donated their fees to two of the marathon’s charity partners (Active Donates Fees For Marine Corps Marathon Snafu).

“MCM registration now is more accessible to everyone, over a longer period so runners don’t have to be concerned about missing out on an opportunity to run the MCM because they are at work or not able to get online the instant registration opens,” said Marine Corps Marathon Director Rick Nealis in a press release.

Marine Corps Marathon lottery

Marines cheer on runners. (Photo: Chief Photographer’s Mate Johnny Bivera/US Navy)

And if you don’t get in through the Marine Corps Marathon lottery? You can still run with one of the race’s 80 plus charity partners, which will start accepting registrations on April 2.

Unlike many major marathons, the race will also allow bib transfers starting in June for registered runners who are unable to participate in the event.

To register or for more information, visit

Other major fall races fielding entrants via lotteries include the TCS New York City Marathon on November 2 and the Bank of America Chicago Marathon on October 12. The New York City Marathon lottery is open now through March 18 at The Chicago Marathon lottery will be open from March 5 through April 7 at

Karla Bruning


Karla Bruning is a race announcer at the TCS New York City Marathon + other major events, TV host for the New York City Triathlon + contributor to Shape, Redbook, Runner's World + other publications. She used to report for Newsweek but spent her free time squeezing in workouts. Now it's her job. She's run 8 marathons, 30 halves, 10 triathlons + open water swims. When she's not running, talking about running or writing about running, she's snuggling her baby, spoiling her dog + compulsively traveling.


02 2014

4 Comments Add Yours ↓

The upper is the most recent comment

  1. 1

    I did this one last year and I LOVED it. And yes, the run to the finish is all uphill but the best uphill ever because it’s just a line of high fives.

    • Karla Bruning

      The NYC Marathon is the same way. Uphill finish but you barely notice it because of the crowds and cheering. I’ve only heard the best things about Marine Corps.
      Karla Bruning recently posted..Marine Corps Marathon Lottery OpensMy Profile

      • Shaun #

        Is the registration fee really $110? I have a bib transfer offer for $200 in addition to the $40 transfer fee & $1.50 transaction fee.

        • Karla Bruning

          Yep, that’s what it was. Sounds like someone is trying to make a profit off the bib.