Boston Marathon Qualifying Standards

  • To qualify for the Boston Marathon, athletes must meet the designated time standard which corresponds to their age group.
  • Boston marathon qualifying standards must be achieved some time from late September.
  • Seeding is based on qualifying times, which are subject to review and verification.
  • All participants must adhere to the guidelines set forth by the Boston Athletic Association (B.A.A.), USA Track and Field or foreign equivalent, International Paralympic Committee, Wheelchair Sports, USA, Disabled Sports, USA, and the United States Association for Blind Athletes.
  • Boston Marathon qualifying standards must be achieved in competitions observing these same rules.
  • Proof of qualification must accompany the application.
  • Participants must be 18 years or older on race day.
  • Qualifying times are based upon your age on the date of the Boston Marathon in which you will be participating.


Men – Boston Marathon Qualifying Standards

18-34 3hrs 5min
35-39 3hrs 10min
40-44 3hrs 15min
45-49 3hrs 25min
50-54 3hrs 30min
55-59 3hrs 40min
60-64 3hrs 55min
65-69 4hrs 10min
70-74 4hrs 25min
75-79 4hrs 40min
80 and over 4hrs 55min


Women – Boston Marathon Qualifying Standards

18-34 3hrs 35min
35-39 3hrs 40min
40-44 3hrs 45min
45-49 3hrs 55min
50-54 4hrs 00min
55-59 4hrs 10min
60-64 4hrs 25min
65-69 4hrs 40min
70-74 4hrs 55min
75-79 5hrs 10min
80 and over 5hrs 25min


Push Rim Wheelchair Division Boston Marathon Qualifying Standards

(Classes 3&4)
18-39 2hrs 00min 2hrs 25min
(Classes 3&4)
40-49 2hrs 15min 2hrs 40min
(Classes 3&4)
50-Over 2hrs 30min 2hrs 55min
(Classes 1&2)
18-39 2hrs 45min 3hrs 10min
(Classes 1&2)
40-49 3hrs 00min 3hrs 25min
(Classes 1&2)
50-Over 3hrs 15min 3hrs 40min


Blind/Visually Impaired Division Boston Marathon Qualifying Standards

The qualifying time is 5:00 hours for visually impaired athletes (men and women) classified B1, B2, and B3.

Mobility Impaired Program

Individuals with permanent physical impairments that affect their ability to ambulate and would not otherwise qualify for entry in other divisions may be granted the following extended qualifying times:


  • The qualifying time is 6:00 hours for individuals who, because of the nature of their disability, have difficulty ambulating.
  • The qualifying time is 8:00 hours for individuals who, because of the nature of their disability, need mobility aids such as prosthetics, leg braces or crutches to ambulate.

All other individuals with disabilities must follow entry procedures and qualifying standards of either the B.A.A. or the established qualifying standard from the recognized disability sports organization.

Boston Marathon Qualifying Standards – FAQs

Q. Are qualifying times based on “gun” or chip/net time?
A. From races that use the chip timing system, the chip/net time will be accepted for qualifying purposes.

Q. Are there special qualifying times for “Clydesdale” runners?
A. No, there are no special allowances for Clydesdales and Phillies.
Q.How do I know if a marathon is run on a certified course?
A.The race director or race management can tell you if a course is certified. For a complete list of certified courses in the U.S.A. check USA Track & Field. In Canada check Athletics Canada. Internationally, an extensive calendar of races is listed at the Association of International Marathon and Road Races website, with indication of courses that are not certified.
Q. I used my qualifying time from the 2004 Chicago Marathon to enter the 2005 Boston Marathon. Can I use the same time again for the 2006 Boston or do I need another qualifier?
A. You may use the same qualifying time twice (as long as it was run within the qualifying period for the 2006 Boston).
Q. I will be 44 when I run my qualifying race, but will be 45 when I run Boston. What is my qualifying time?
A. Your qualifying time is based on your age on the day of the Boston Marathon, thus your qualifying time will be 3hrs 30 min – and you can be 44 when you run your qualifying race.
Q. I will never be able to qualify. Can I run the race as an unofficial or “bandit” runner, or is there any other way I could officially enter?
A. No, please do not run if you have not officially entered in the race. Race amenities along the course and at the finish, such as fluids, medical care, and traffic safety, are provided based on the number of official entrants. Any addition to this by way of unofficial participants, adversely affects our ability to ensure a safe race for everyone. The B.A.A. makes a limited number of non-qualified entries available to local charities for fundraising purposes. If you have not qualified and want to participate, this may be an option for you. Visit our official charities page for more information. Charities for the 2005 Boston Marathon will be announced after Labor Day, September 6, 2004.
Q. What are the Boston Marathon qualifying standards?
A. Please look at the Boston Marathon qualifying standards above.
Q. What are the qualifying times for push rim wheelchair participants?
A. Please look at the Boston Marathon qualifying standards above.
Q. What if I am 15 seconds over the qualifying time, will my time be accepted?
A. We accept all times that are within 59 seconds of the listed qualifying times, e.g., 3:40:59. PLEASE do not ask us for additional seconds beyond that!
Q. Where can I find a list of upcoming marathons or marathons in my area?
A. Please visit the Marathon Schedule of our website. Also following are a list of the most frequently used marathons for qualifying.

Boston Marathon Qualifying Standards – Qualifying Races

The following are the most frequently used qualifying races for the B.A.A. Boston Marathon:

  • Chicago Marathon – Chicago, IL (888) 243-3344 or (312) 904-9800 – October
  • Marine Corps Marathon – Washington, D.C. 800-RUN USMC or (703) 784-2225 – October
  • Baystate Marathon – Tyngsboro, MA (978) 323-4400 – October
  • Philadelphia Marathon – Philadelphia, PA (215) 685-0054 – November
  • Columbus Marathon – Columbus, OH (614) 421-7866 – October
  • Walt Disney World Marathon – Lake Buena Vista, FL (407) 939-7810 – January
  • Ocean State Marathon – East Greenwich, RI (401) 885-4499 – October
  • St. George Marathon – St. George, UT (801) 634-5850 – October
  • Hartford Marathon – Hartford, CT (860) 652-8866 – October
  • Richmond Marathon – Richmond, VA (804) 285-9495 – November
  • Vermont City Marathon – Burlington, VT (800) 880-8149 or (802) 863-8412 – May
  • Steamtown Marathon – Avoca, PA (570) 963-6363 or (717) 457-1320 – October
  • Austin Marathon – Austin, TX (877) 601-6686 – February
  • California International Marathon – Sacramento, CA (916) 983-4622 – December
  • Houston Marathon – Houston, TX (713) 957-3453 – January
  • New York City Marathon – New York, NY (212) 423-2249 – November
  • Twin Cities Marathon – St. Paul/Minneapolis, MN (763) 287-3888 – October
  • Rock ‘N’ Roll – San Diego, CA (858) 450-6510 – June
  • Portland Marathon – Portland, OR (503) 226-1111 – October
  • Toronto Marathon – Toronto, ONT, Canada (416) 972-1062 – October
  • Detroit Marathon – Detroit, MI (313) 222-6676 – October