Note: This story was originally posted on Oct. 10, before many fall events took place. It has since been updated to include the final results and statistics from all Canadian marathon events from 2016.
According to MarathonGuide.com, the Canadian race where runners are “most likely to qualify” for the Boston Marathon is the Hamilton Marathon Road2Hope. This was the ninth consecutive year that Hamilton topped the list and currently the race sits 10th overall among all races in North America.
The 2016 event took place on Nov. 6 and saw 219 participants hit their respective BQ times which according to the website represented 28.5 per cent of the field–there were 776 finishers. Note MarathonGuide typically only includes finishers that complete the 42.2K distance in six hours or less.
While Hamilton has the highest percentage of qualifiers in relation to its field size, the 2016 Ottawa Marathon had the highest number of qualifiers overall. According to MarathonGuide, 631 runners out of the 4,181 finishers in Ottawa qualified for Boston by hitting their gender and age group’s time standard. As such, Ottawa ranks ninth overall in terms of races with the most qualifiers.
The Boston Marathon is one of the few races that requires runners to hit certain qualifying standards to be eligible for entry. Even if one hits their respective standards, which vary depending on age and sex, entry is not guaranteed as the field is capped. This year, for example, runners needed to be at least two minutes and nine seconds faster than the qualifying standard.
The statistics are based purely off a runner’s time as not everyone who hits the Boston standard applies for registration. Entry to the 2017 Boston Marathon is now closed so runners will have to aim towards the 2018 edition of the race if their bid for registration was unsuccessful.
The rankings compile results from races across Canada and the United States. In the “most likely to qualify” category, there are currently only two Canadians races that rank in the top-30. In addition to Hamilton being ranked 10th overall, Marathon de Rimouski is ranked 25th. As of this edit, there are no additional marathon events scheduled in Canada for 2016 but a number of U.S. events still to come could affect the final rankings.
Here are how the Canadian races stacked up against the competition.
Most likely to qualify (as of Nov. 8, 2016)
10. Hamilton Marathon Road2Hope (Nov. 6, 2016 – Hamilton, Ont.): 219 Boston qualifiers (28.5 per cent of finishers)
25. Marathon de Rimouski (Oct. 2, 2016 – Rimouski, Que.): 59 Boston qualifiers (19.7 per cent of finishers)
Previously mentioned events
Note that the above list does not include finishers who completed the race in more than six hours.
Most Boston qualifiers in 2016 (as of Nov. 8, 2016)
9. Ottawa Marathon (May 29 – Ottawa): 631 BQs (4,181 finishers; 15.1 per cent BQ rate)
14. Toronto Waterfront Marathon (Oct. 16 – Toronto): 406 BQs (3,707 finishers; 10.9 per cent BQ rate)
17. BMO Vancouver Marathon (May 1 – Vancouver): 338 BQs (3,773 finishers; 9.0 per cent BQ rate)
25. Rock ‘n’ Roll Montreal Marathon (Sept. 25 – Montreal): 280 BQs (3,682 finishers; 7.6 per cent BQ rate)
Previously mentioned events
GoodLife Fitness Toronto Marathon (May 1 – Toronto): 238 BQs (1,491 finishers; 16.0 per cent BQ rate)
MarathonGuide.com notes that the rankings are “skewed to those that have the most participants.”