Frequently Asked Questions

This page last updated – 26th June 2016

Common Questions

Welcome to the Frequently Asked Questions page.
We will attempt to answer any of your burning questions here.
If you have any more, please contact us.

General Information

Firstly check that your event will meet the criteria of the 100 Marathon Club as counting for our purposes and if you are satisfied that it does then contact us with the following details –
1) Event Name,
2) Event Date,
3) URL of information page
4) URL of entry page (if different)
Yes. We require that an event has either a permit which includes public liability insurance from an athletics affiliated organization (England Athletics, Trail Runners Association, LDWA or similar) or a separate public liability insurance policy. Many organizations have similar rules, for example, to be listed in the “Strider” magazine you need to have a permit from the LDWA.
No. But the Trail Runners Association have a very informative booklet to download at and RunBritian have a Road Race Handbook at
The 100 Marathon Club is primarily a running club, events where runners are either actively discouraged or prohibited won’t be counted (i.e. The Moonwalk series) nor will such events be included in the 100 Marathon Race lists.
Yes. Currently The 100 Marathon Club makes no distinction or classification as to the speed that participants complete a marathon or ultra, however, running all, or part of the course must be an available option for participants. Of course you must also abide by the event rules, especially with regard to time limits. We may in the future need to distinguish in some way between run and walked marathons, but this will be purely for club stats, not qualification to join the club.
If the event organizers are flexible and include you in the race results then that event counts. If they list you as a DNF or are simply omitted from the race results then it doesn’t count even though you completed the distance, you must abide by the race rules.
Yes. The listing isn’t meant to be totally inclusive, but if it’s on the list it will count.
The 100 Marathon Club actively encourages that results be published and/or certificates be issued as recognition that runners have completed an event. This isn’t compulsory however, at a minimum we require that runners be checked in and checked out of an event, this can be either automatically (i.e. chip timing) or manually.
No. Changes only apply to future events, there is no retroactive reassessment. When a person joins the 100 Marathon Club the rules in force at that time apply.
The 100 Marathon Club is primarily a United Kingdom and Ireland running club and it is felt that members should, at some stage, have completed a certain minimum number of road marathons (as defined by the 100 Marathon Club) to maintain that spirit and integrity of the marathon. One of the aims of the club is to promote United Kingdom and Ireland road marathons and this we feel helps towards that aim but without excluding those who prefer to do the majority of the events off road.
Yes. The 100 Marathon Club recognizes that there may be exceptional circumstances where a person has entered an event in good faith fully anticipating that the event would have 25 or more finishers only to find that exceptional circumstances have occurred and this isn’t the case. The 100 Marathon Club will accept a completion of such an event upon request as long as the following criteria have been met.

i) The event was listed on the 100 Marathon Club website as a qualifying event.

ii) There were originally a minimum of 25 people entered for the event.

iii) There are exceptional circumstances as to why there weren’t ten finishers. For example exceptionally bad weather conditions, traffic or other health or safety considerations. When submitting race lists the 100 Marathon Club will accept on a members honour the reasons they state for the exceptional circumstances.

iv) It is unlikely that the 100 Marathon Club would list the event again as a qualifying event until reassurances that the event would meet all the qualifications standards again in the future.

Different Marathon Types

A road marathon will be run predominately on a road/pavement/concrete type surface and been accurately measured to 26 miles, 385 yards or 42195m. A trail marathon is one run predominately on non road surfaces, or hasn’t been accurately measured. The key feature for an event to be considered a road marathon is a course measurement certificate stating the course has been accurately measured to 26m385y.
No, if the course hasn’t been accurately measured to the “classic” marathon distance of 26 miles, 385 yards, or 42,195m then the event is classed as a trail marathon.
We understand that it is impossible to accurately measure some trail marathon routes so we allow organizers to round down the declared distance to 26 miles. In the majority of these events the actual distance covered is often somewhat more than the declared distance.
As long as the course has been accurately measured to 26 miles 385 yards and a significant majority of the race was road then you should count the event as a road marathon.
No. The declared distance is the deciding factor no matter how far you actually went.
As long as the course is accurately measured then this is classified as a road marathon.
For 100 Marathon Club purposes that would count as an ultra as the declared distance is the determining factor.
Where an event is declared at exactly 27 miles, then that is classed as a marathon for 100 Marathon Club purposes, for it to be an ultra the declared distance must be over 27 miles.
Yes. But as it is a triathlon rather than a marathon then it counts as a trail marathon.
The “25 finisher” rule applies to the event in total. If the combined number of finishers of marathon distance or greater is 25 or more in total then the marathon/ultra will count.


No, you must complete the race distance entered for it to count unless the race makes provisions, published in advance as part of the race rules, for entrants to complete a shorter distance on the day. For an event to count the race organizers must publish in advance the point at which the withdrawal can be made and the time and distance covered by entrants covered by these provisions. If you receive a simple DNF then the event won’t count nor will it count if the race rules make no provision for early withdrawals over the marathon distance.
Yes, the race rules allow for this and as long as the results that are published state that you completed 36 miles in the stipulated time then that will count. If they simply published results showing you as a DNF for the 40 mile event then that wouldn’t count.
Yes, the rules state that you can withdraw before the full race distance and as long as you complete more than 26.2 miles and the race results state your time and distance then that event will count as a marathon if you complete 26.2 miles or an ultra if longer than 27 miles. However we strongly advise that a competitor completes over 27 miles, so that the event can be counted as an ultra, as the event was always an ultra, not a marathon.
A timed ultra of 6, 12, 24, 48, 6 days or of any other duration will count as a single marathon if you complete at least 26.2 miles, or a single ultra if you complete at least 27 miles no matter what the final distance covered is. If you fail to reach 26.2 miles in the time allotted then the event doesn’t count. However we strongly advise that a competitor completes over 27 miles, so that the event can be counted as an ultra, as the event was always an ultra, not a marathon.

100 Marathon Club Challenge Competition

All road marathons in the UK & Ireland in a calendar year.
No. Track marathons don’t count towards the 100 Marathon Club Challenge Competition.
To make it fair for all members the committee has decided to restrict the maximum number of marathons that can be counted towards the Challenge Competition from any one event or series of events to a maximum of three in any one year.

Short Courses / Non Qualifying Events

In the days of personal GPS devices reasonably accurate measurements can be made by individuals. Where a course is found to be short then an individual runner may for his own sense of satisfaction complete the extra distance “off route” to make up any short fall. This however is not mandatory and for the first year that an event is found to be short it will count for 100 Marathon Club purposes.

Where a course is found to be short then the 100 Marathon Club will mention this to the race organizers who we hope will take steps to ensure subsequent years events meet the required distances. If these actions aren’t taken then in future years the event won’t be listed on our race lists and the event won’t be counted.

Why would you want to run it, if you knew it was short? Where it is known that the course is short then it won’t count for 100 Marathon Club purposes.
No, this wouldn’t count. Where an event is declared shorter than a marathon distance then it won’t count no matter the distance you actually run.
Yes. These can be found on the Excluded Events page.

These exclusions will remain in place for each of these events until evidence is provided to the committee that any future running of a particular event meets the required criteria

Yes. If an event doesn’t match our standards for permits etc, these will be listed here.

These exclusions will remain in place for each of these events until evidence is provided to the committee that any future running of a particular event would qualify.

No. Only LDWA events classed as “Challenge Events” can be considered for inclusion as counting events. They handily specify on their lists of events if they are Challenge Events or Group Walks so easy to spot which is which.

Relay Races

No, for a marathon or ultra to count you must be registered to run in a full event as an individual, not as part of a relay team no matter the distance covered.
No this wouldn’t count; you must be registered as an individual in the full marathon for it to count.

Challenge Events

A Challenge Event is timed running event. They have a specified time limit rather than a specified distance to be covered. They must have a minimum time limit of 6 hours to be considered as a counting event for 100 Marathon Club purposes. There is no maximum time limit.
You must cover a minimum of 26.2 miles as declared by the event.
You must cover over 27 miles as declared by the event.
The Challenge Event will have a declared distance to be covered. For example 3.28 mile loops. If you complete 8 then you’ve covered 26.24 miles as declared by the event and have completed a marathon. What a garmin says or if you did “bonus miles” is irrelevant, its what the race organiser declares is the distance you’ve covered.
As a Challenge event is a timed ultra then there must be a minimum of 25 starters for an event to count. There doesn’t have to be 25 finishers of marathon or greater distance, but there must be 25 starters.
Where a Challenge Event has a time limit you can invariably stop before the time expires. However in the event of there being multiple Challenge Events you cannot start another event until the original time limit has expired. i.e. A 72 hour event starts Friday, 48 hour event Saturday and a 24 hour event Sunday. You cannot enter all three events, run a marathon on the Friday, say you’ve stopped being the 72 hour Event and then start the 48 hour event the next day and run another marathon. Only one Event will count as the time limits overlap.

Virtual Races

No. For an event to count it must be a real actual event and meet all the criteria of the Club. Virtual races fail these criteria

Stage Races

If the event contains one or more stages of over 26 miles then each may be counted as a separate marathon (or ultra if over 27 miles) if firstly, results are published for each individual stage and secondly each separate stage can be entered as an individual event.
(1) The Marathon des Sables, is a multi day event, it has stages of over 26 miles but you can’t enter individual days, you complete the whole challenge or you get a DNF. If you complete the event, you can count this as a single ultra (as it has a stage of over 27 miles). If you receive a DNF, no matter at what point, then it doesn’t count as a marathon or an ultra.

(2) Two/Three day challenges organized by such companies as XRNG, VoTwo etc. Each daily stage is of marathon distance or longer and each individual stage can be entered separately and results are published separately so really these are two or three linked events, not a single inclusive event. You could enter days one and three, or just day two for example. Each individual event completed can be counted as a marathon or ultra.

Yes, the committee has decided that the long running Windermere 10 Marathons in 10 Days challenge shall continue to be counted as 10 separate marathons for 100 Marathon Club purposes. The reason we are saying this is that each day is in fact an exact measured road marathon of 26m 385y, still upholding the integrity of the marathon. Other events will only be considered as exceptions if they meet these criteria.
Yes. The Ridgeway Trail can be tackled either as a multi-day event, broken down in to three separate stages organized by one company, each which could be entered individually or as one single stage ultra organized by another company.