Chicago Half Marathon

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Chicago Half Marathon
20070909 Chicago Half Marathon edit.jpg
Runners on Lake Shore Drive in the Kenwood community area on the South Side of Chicago (2007)
Date September 7, 2014 (next race)
September 8, 2013 (last race)
Location Chicago
Event type Road
Distance Half marathon
Established October 5, 1997
Course records - (men)
- (women)
Official site

Chicago Half Marathon or Chicago Half Marathon & 5K (formerly Banco Popular Chicago Half Marathon presented by the Illinois Agents of Farmers Insurance, Banco Popular Chicago Half Marathon & 5K and Banco Popular Chicago Half Marathon) is an annual half marathon as well as 5000 metres race occurring in September or October on the South Side of Chicago. The race takes place on a largely out-and-back course along Lake Shore Drive. With 20,000 registrants and 13,537 finishers in 2009,[1] the race bills itself as the fifth largest half marathon in the United States and the 21st largest road running event in the country.[2] The race is regarded as one of the premier half marathon events, with Runner's World naming it as one of the top 10 half marathons in the United States.[3] Susan Nicholl is the race director and founder of the event.[4] According to the Chicago Sun-Times, this race is known as The people's race.[5]


The course passes by or through several of the most prominent parts of the Chicago Park District on the South Side including Midway Plaissance, Jackson Park and Burnham Park. The route passes through several community areas: Woodlawn, the South Shore border, Hyde Park, Kenwood, Oakland, and Douglas.[6] The first running October 5, 1997 occurred along the Lake Michigan lakefront and finished in Grant Park.[7] In 1998, the race moved to the South Side course that begins and ends near the Museum of Science and Industry.[8] That year's race, which had 4100 runners, was part of the USA Track & Field state championship series, crowning the state half marathon champions.[9] The race is now listed as one of three half marathons in Chicago.[10]

Some runners, including 2009 winner Patrick Rizzo, use the race to prepare for the Chicago Marathon.[11] Others, such as four-time winner Chris Wehrman, have used it as a tuneup for the New York City Marathon.[12] The 2004 edition of the race, which had 9,000 runners, served as the USA Track and Field State Championship.[13]

The first race, which had over 3000 competitors, was won by Grzegorz Olszowik of Willowbrook, Illinois (1:09.46) and 1996 Marathon Olympian Jenny Spangler of Gurnee, Illinois (1:20.19).[14] Greg Costello won the race three consecutive times from 2006-2008.[15] Chris Wehrman won the race 4 times in 5 years between 2000 and 2004.[12] In 2006, Banco Popular became the title sponsor of what was called the Banco Popular Chicago Half Marathon presented by the Illinois Agents of Farmers Insurance.[16] It continued as sponsor until 2008 when the race was known as the Banco Popular Chicago Half Marathon & 5K.[17]


  1. ^ "2009 Chicago Half Marathon & 5K - Half Marathon". The Active Network, Inc. Retrieved 2010-07-25. 
  2. ^ "14th Annual Chicago Half Marathon & 5K". Chicago Half Marathon. Retrieved 2010-07-25. 
  3. ^ "Illinois > Chicago Half Marathon & 5K". HalfMarathons.Net. Retrieved 2010-07-25. 
  4. ^ Houlihan, Mike (September 19, 2004). "Half Marathon: 'It's a very sexy race'". Chicago Sun-Times. p. 24. 
  5. ^ "The Mix". Chicago Sun-Times. September 11, 1998. p. 3. 
  6. ^ "14th Annual Chicago Half Marathon & 5K Course Map" (PDF). Chicago Half Marathon. Retrieved 2010-07-25. 
  7. ^ "Tulsa coach heads to FSU". Chicago Sun-Times. July 1, 1997. p. 76. 
  8. ^ Hamel, Larry (September 13, 1998). "New entries strengthen Chicago Marathon field". Chicago Sun-Times. p. 24. 
  9. ^ Hamel, Larry (September 14, 1998). "Jung-Beeman wins half-marathon". Chicago Sun-Times. p. 82. 
  10. ^ "Upcoming Illinois Half Marathons". Running in the USA. Retrieved 2010-07-25. 
  11. ^ Bowman, Dale (September 14, 2009). "Former water boy wins men's title". Chicago Sun-Times. p. 57. 
  12. ^ a b Ziehm, Len (September 20, 2004). "CHICAGO HALF MARATHON Full speed ahead: Wehrman, Miltz not half bad // Chicago attorney, Hoffman Estates teacher win easily". Chicago Sun-Times. p. 97. 
  13. ^ Ziehm, Len (September 18, 2004). "CHICAGO HALF MARATHON Four-time Boston winner Rodgers spices field". Chicago Sun-Times. p. 95. 
  14. ^ Jackson, Brian (October 6, 1997). "Spangler back in action". Chicago Sun-Times. p. 79. 
  15. ^ Bowman, Dale (September 11, 2009). "In favorite 13.1-miler, Costello no stranger to 'Who's on first?'". Chicago Sun-Times. p. 51. 
  16. ^ Lazare, Lewis (April 27, 2006). "Candy bar ad's target age seems to be its number: 5". Chicago Sun-Times. p. 59. 
  17. ^ "The mix - Cool things to do". Chicago Sun-Times. September 12, 2008. p. NC3. 

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