Boston Marathon explosion: Facts about the marathon, by the numbers

Facts about the Boston Marathon:


Full name: Boston Athletic Association Marathon.

- The Boston Marathon is the world's oldest, still-running marathon. The first run was held in 1887.

- Of the 26,655 runners who competed last year, only 21,616 finished.

- In 2012, 15,503 males and 11,152 females registered for the marathon.

- There were 39 wheelchair applicants and 22 handcycle applicants in 2012.

- There were 92 countries represented at last year's event. Fifty-five U.S. states and territories were also represented in 2012. 

- Only runners 18 and over are allowed to participate, however, there is no age maximum. Last year, 81-year-old Madonna Buder finished in five hours and 48 minutes. She was the only female aged 80+ participating in the race last year. 

- Ibrahim Hussein became the first black male to claim victory at Boston in 1988.

- Women were excluded from the race until 1972.

- Kathrine Switzer – under the name K. V. Switzer – snuck into the race despite females being barred from entering. A race official tried to tackle her toward the end of the race, but she dodged it and crossed the finish line in four hours and 20 minutes.

- An estimated 500,000 people, nearly 80 percent of Boston's population, line the race route.

- The winner receives $150,000 ¬ and an extra $25,000 if they break a course record.


Sources: Boston Athletic Association and


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