UK runners will be interested to hear that Los Angeles marathon has been named the best big city race in the United States in the January issue of Runners World USA. The Californian event, launched in 2008, already attracts a 20,000 plus field, tempted by the hugely popular Stadium to the Sea course and a 'laid-back' ambience that reflects the west coast city's character.
The marathon starts at Dodger Stadium and passes many of LA's world-famous landmarks including Walt Disney Concert Hall, Grauman's Chinese Theatre, the Capitol Records Building, Sunset Strip, Rodeo Drive and the Santa Monica Pier.
LA marathon race director Nick Curl was delighted to receive the Runners World endorsement. Talking about the 2013 renewal on St Patrick's Day (17 March) Curl said: "We continue to challenge ourselves to enhance the runner experience from year to year, and recognition like this confirms that our efforts are working. Registration is also at an extremely brisk pace, so this year in particular, I urge runners to sign up now and don't get left behind."
The quirky nature of the Los Angeles event is reflected in features like Cheer Alley. As runners leave Beverly Hills and head toward Mile 18, they will be greeted by hundreds of local cheerleaders whooping it up and encouraging participants before the final crucial stages. Also runners who complete California's other big marathon in July in San Francisco (or who finished the 2012 race) in addition to LA marathon will receive a special LA/SF Challenge medal commemorating the big double.
British runners interested in taking part in Los Angeles marathon can arrange entry and accommodation through the event's UK partner, Sports Tours International. Sports Tours International has 3, 4 and 5 night packages at the Ocean View Hotel in Santa Monica, close to the marathon finish.