Race Policies

BMO Vancouver Marathon Race Policies


    1. Age Restrictions: Our race registration Age Policy requires that as of race day, May 7, 2017, all Marathon and Marathon Relay participants must be 18 or older, all Half Marathon participants must be 16 or older, and all 8 KM participants must be 11 or older. All Kids Fun Run participants must be between 5 and 12 years old on their race day, May 6, 2017. There are no age restrictions for the 2.5KM Walk.
      This policy follows international standards, has been informed by our external medical advisers, and is in place for the safety of participants. Parents/guardians must sign the Online waiver at registration for participants aged 18 or under and parents/guardians are urged to ensure that young runners have the training and pace judgement needed to complete the event comfortably and safely. Event organizers reserve the right to require proof of age.


    1. Prohibited Items:The use of strollers, bicycles, inline skates, pets, personal drone use and elite pacing are strictly prohibited. The right to disqualify runners who fail to comply with these regulations is at the sole and exclusive decision of the Board of Directors of the Vancouver International Marathon Society (“Society”).


    1. Drone Usage: Personal and Commercial drone use is strictly prohibited at any Vancouver International Marathon Society event; including all BMO Vancouver Marathon events, Granville Island Turkey Trot and Fall Classic.


    1. iPods/MP3 players/headphones:For the runner’s safety, music devices is not encouraged. There is no risk of disqualification for simple use. If a runner puts themselves or other runners at risk through an unsafe act that event officials determine was caused directly or indirectly through the use of a prohibited item however, the runner may be disqualified.


    1. Nordic Pole Walkers and Walkers: Nordic Pole Walkers are not encouraged because of the congestion on the course, however, should poles be required for participation, then participants will be placed in the last corral. In addition, nordic pole walkers and walkers will be instructed to walk at the side of the course to reduce any potential congestion with runners or pedestrians. All walkers must meet course time limits. Course time limits are: Marathon and Marathon Relay 7:00 hours, Half Marathon 4:00 hours, 8KM 1.5 hours.


    1. Pacing Requirement:There will be designated check points along the course with authorized course marshals that monitor and encourage runners to stay on pace and to ensure completion within the cut off time. A sweep vehicle will be available for pick up if necessary.


    1. Course Hours:The Half Marathon course opens at 7am and closes at 11am on May 7, 2017. The Marathon and Marathon Relay courses open at 8:30am and close at 3:30pm on May 7, 2017. The 8KM course has a new start time of 9:30am and closes at 11am on May 7, 2017. The Marathon, Marathon Relay, Half Marathon and 8KM races all share the same bustling Downtown Finish Line, where you’ll celebrate amidst a throng of cheering spectators on Sunday, May 7, 2017. The Kids Run and 2.5KM Walk starts at 11am and 11:30am respectively on Saturday, May 6. Due to our agreement with the City of Vancouver, we are required to open roads at specific times and if you arrive later than these times, you will not be permitted to run. Note: The Half Marathon Start Line is closed at 7:20AM, the Marathon and Relay Start Line is closed at 8:40AM, and the 8KM is closed at 9:40AM.


  1. Course Availability:The event is restricted and limited to registered participants only.


To improve your race experience and ensure our suppliers and stakeholders have enough time to meet our event requirements, changes to our registration policy have been introduced for 2017.

View the Entry Fees and Deadlines HERE.

The Marathon is capped at 5,000 participants, and the Marathon Relay is capped at 260 teams, with a minimum age of 18 on race day. The Half Marathon is capped at 10,000 participants with a minimum age of 16 on race day. The 8KM is capped at 2,500 participants with a minimum age of 11.

Discounts on registration do not apply to charity runners, students, youth or senior pricing. Discounts only apply to regular pricing.



For Legal and Liability reasons runners cannot offer their unused bib to any other runner. Runners are not allowed to defer their unused entry to the following year.


The Vancouver International Marathon Society, in accordance with management executives and the Board, city officials and local law enforcement has the authority to cancel any of the events for emergency purposes such as, but not limited to, inclement weather or threat of terrorism. If such emergency conditions force cancellation, refunds cannot be provided since funds will have been spent in preparation for Race Day.


Participants who are unable to participate in the Marathon or Half Marathon events due to an injury and/or medical reason are eligible to receive a 50% discount on their registration* for 2018 when they volunteer on Race Day in one of our key areas. All applications must be received by April 17, 2017. No exceptions.

Participants who are unable to participate in the Marathon, Marathon Relay or Half Marathon events due to an injury and/or medical reason, and who are unable to volunteer on Race Day, can apply to receive a 20% discount on their registration for 2018. All applications must be received by May 1, 2017. No Exceptions.

Those eligible will receive a 50% discount on their registration for 2018 when they volunteer on race day. The only volunteer role option for 50% deferrals is at the Start Line. Please visit the volunteer registration page to see the Start Line opportunities.

*Discount will apply to Tier 1 race entry fees only

Deferral Policy Form


While there is space available, you may switch to a shorter distance – ie. switch your Marathon entry to a Half Marathon or 8KM entry, or Half Marathon entry to an 8KM entry – however, the price difference will not be refunded. A $10 change fee will be applied to all changes. Plus applicable online fees.

While there is space available, you may also switch to a longer distance – ie. switch your Half Marathon to a Marathon, or 8KM to a Half Marathon or Marathon – however, you will be charged the price difference. A $10 change fee will be applied to all changes. Plus applicable online fees.

Please note that there may be a price difference charged, even if the race switch is a downgrade. The race fee recognized at the switch, is the fee at the date of the switch, not the fee at the time of registration. For example a race fee for the Marathon registration in October was $119, then switch at the Expo to the Half Marathon, where the fee is $129. A runner will pay the $10 switch fee, plus the price difference of $10 for a total of $20.

Marathon Relay participants may swap in and out at no charge within a relay team, but cannot switch out of a relay team into another race. A new registration is required to change to a different race.

To switch races or Marathon Relay participants, please connect to the Participant Dashboard. You will need to provide your confirmation code from registration to access your Participant Dashboard.

If there is space available, you may also switch your race distance at the Health, Sport & Lifestyle Expo. Please pick up your race package at the Expo and proceed to the ‘Solutions Desk’ to switch your registration.

Note: If a runner registered for a race and runs another race without officially switching events prior to race day, upon crossing the Finish Line the runner will not receive a finisher medal. In addition, the timing company will register the runner’s time as DNF (Did Not Finish).




It is the responsibility of each runner (“Runner”) to properly place the chip timing device (“Chip”) appropriately. The timing chip is embedded in the runners Bib. The Bib must be worn on the front of the runners’ shirt to work properly. When worn other than the front of the shirt, timing may not be captured.

To maintain the integrity of race results for the BMO Vancouver Marathon, race results for any particular runner may not be validated in the following circumstances:

  • Where (Chip) times at specific locations, have not been recorded (despite both start and finish (Chip) times having been recorded);
  • Where (i) (Chip) times at specific locations, have not been recorded, and (ii) there is a negative split time between the first half of the marathon/half marathon and the second half of the marathon/half marathon exceeding 15 minutes; or
  • In such other circumstances as determined by the sole and exclusive decision of the Board of Directors of the Vancouver International Marathon Society (“Society”).

In the event a Runner’s time has not been validated in the circumstances described above, the Runner may appeal the non-validation of the runner’s time by requesting, in writing, that the Society review the validation of the runner’s time. Such review will be based on the written explanation of the runner and a review of the cameras (film and photo) commissioned by the Society during the race. All decisions by the Society as to any such appeal are final.

The Society reserves the right to forward notice of all results that have not been validated to BC Athletics, Athletics Canada, the Boston Marathon Society or such other race governing organizations as appropriate.



The BMO Vancouver Marathon bases the results on Gun time AND Chip. Gun Time is the time from the start of the race (gun) to when you cross the Finish Line as per IAAF, Athletics Canada, USATF, AIMS and International Awards standards. Chip time is the time recorded by the BibTag/timing Chip once a runner crosses the Start Line, then the Finish Line.

Gun time will be the Official time for all Elite Athletes and Masters Elite Athletes. Chip time will be the Official time for all other runners, including Age Group winners.


  • Participants must stay within course boundaries, as designated by officials, marshals  traffic cones, barriers, and other markings, at all times. Failure to do so may result in disqualification and ineligibility for future BMO Vancouver Marathon events.
  • Participant bib numbers must be fully visible at all times on the front of the body.
  • Participants are advised not to invite anyone not officially registered for the event to join in any part of the race. Any runners not officially registered for the event will be given one warning before the Police will be advised, and the runner will be removed from the course.
  • The Society reserves the right to disqualify any individual from the BMO Vancouver Marathon event. This disqualification may be based on, but is not limited to, all race policies; unsportsmanlike conduct; competing with an unofficial bib number; competing with a bib number assigned to another race distance within the event; competing with an official bib number assigned to another person; transferring or attempting to transfer an official bib number, or to obtain such bib number, from another person; being paced during the race by a person not entered in the race; accepting assistance from non-race participants; crossing the finish line without having completed the entire course; and providing false information on the race entry form. Individuals disqualified from a race will be removed from the race results and may be barred from future events.



Note: The international sport governing bodies (IAAF and IOC) have banned Russian athletes from international competition and as such the BMO Vancouver Marathon will not accept Russian athletes into the Elite Athlete Program, nor will Russian athletes be eligible for awards or prizing.

In-competition drug testing is not currently administered by the Vancouver International Marathon Society. Our races are AIMS certified, but unsanctioned by the IAAF thereby not required to conduct drug testing. A winner (first, second or third place) who becomes disqualified by a recognized governing body due to doping in the time period of our event will be disqualified from our event and the title removed. The title will then be awarded to the next qualified athlete. Disqualified winners will be requested to return or refund any prizes received.