Grandma's Marathon is an annual road race held each June in Duluth, Minnesota, in the United States. The course runs point-to-point from the town of Two Harbors on Scenic Route 61 and continues along Lake Superior into the city of Duluth. The finish is located in Canal Park, near Grandma's Restaurant, which is next to the highly visible Aerial Lift Bridge.
Grandma's was first run in 1977 with only 150 participants; the first race was won by Minnesotan and 1976 Olympic 10000m runner Garry Bjorklund. The newly opened Grandma's Restaurant was the only local business that would sponsor the then-fledgling event, for the fee of $600. Race organizers then named the new race after the restaurant. Grandma's Marathon is now run by almost 10,000 runners every year, has nearly a $2 million operating budget and is credited with bringing tens of millions of tourist dollars into the city of Duluth.
The men's record time for Grandma's is 2:09:06, set in 2014 by Dominic Ondoro of Kenya. The previous record of 2:09:37, set in 1981 by Wayzata, Minnesota native Dick Beardsley stood for 33 years before being broken. The women's record time is 2:26:31, set in 2013 by Sarah Kiptoo. In 2005, Halina Karnatsevich was the first finisher with a time of 2:33:39 but she was later disqualified for failing her post-race doping test.
Grandma's includes several other running events in addition to the full marathon. These include the Garry Bjorklund Half Marathon, the William A. Irvin 5k, the Fitger's 5k, the Park Point 5 Miler, and the Grandma's Minnesota Mile, as well as several "whipper snapper" races for kids.
2009 was the first time in 15 years that all of the 9,500 available spots were not filled, leading to a deficit in the race budget. Executive director Scott Keenan suggested that the economy was the main reason for the downturn in participants. Lifetime entries were offered in 1987 (for $100) and again in 1990 (for $125) to help increase the number of runners entering the race.
The 35th edition of the marathon in 2011 had its first photo-finish: eventual winner Christopher Kipyego mistook the electronic timing mat for the finish point and prematurely stopped, leading to an impromptu sprint finish against Teklu Deneke. Just two tenths of a second ended up separating the pair.
The 37th running of the race in 2013 saw the first time that more people registered for the Bjorklund Half Marathon than Grandma's Marathon. There were 7,835 registered for the Bjorklund Half Marathon but only 7,338 people registered for Grandma's Marathon.
Key: Course record American championship race
|1st||1977-06-25||Garry Bjorklund (USA)||2:21:54||Wendy Hovland (USA)||3:23:39|
|2nd||1978-06-24||Barney Klecker (USA)||2:18:42||Cheryl Westrum (USA)||2:57:14|
|3rd||1979-06-23||Ricky Wilde (ENG)||2:14:44||Lorraine Moller (NZL)||2:37:37|
|4th||1980-06-21||Garry Bjorklund (USA)||2:10:20||Lorraine Moller (NZL)||2:38:35|
|5th||1981-06-20||Dick Beardsley (USA)||2:09:37||Lorraine Moller (NZL)||2:29:35.5|
|6th||1982-06-19||Dick Beardsley (USA)||2:14:50||Janice Ettle (USA)||2:41:21|
|7th||1983-06-11||Gerry Helme (ENG)||2:12:10||Jenny Spangler (USA)||2:33:52|
|8th||1984-06-16||Derek Stevens (ENG)||2:12:41||Anne Hird (USA)||2:37:30|
|9th||1985-06-15||Don Norman (USA)||2:11:08||Susan Stone (CAN)||2:39:45|
|10th||1986-06-21||Joseph Kipsang (KEN)||2:12:53||Karlene Herrell (USA)||2:38:45|
|11th||1987-06-20||Dan Schlesinger (USA)||2:16:00||Janis Klecker (USA)||2:36:12|
|12th||1988-06-11||Armando Azocar (VEN)||2:20:07||Jacqueline Gareau (CAN)||2:43:27|
|13th||1989-06-17||Doug Kurtis (USA)||2:16:49||Louise Mohanna (USA)||2:39:50|
|14th||1990-06-23||Igor Braskavski (URS)||2:18:12||Jane Welzel (USA)||2:33:25|
|15th||1991-06-22||Driss Dacha (MAR)||2:13:59||Janice Ettle (USA)||2:35:27|
|16th||1992-06-20||Roy Dooney (IRL)||2:13:25||Jane Welzel (USA)||2:33:01|
|17th||1993-06-19||Doug Kurtis (USA)||2:16:38||Lorraine Hochella (USA)||2:34:46|
|18th||1994-06-18||Donald Johns (USA)||2:18:19||Linda Somers (USA)||2:33:42|
|19th||1995-06-17||Mark Curp (USA)||2:15:23||Irina Bogachova (KGZ)||2:34:11|
|20th||1996-06-22||Patrick Muturi (KEN)||2:13:43||Mary Alico (USA)||2:32:42|
|21st||1997-06-21||Patrick Muturi (KEN)||2:15:44||Irina Bogachova (KGZ)||2:38:44|
|22nd||1998-06-20||Simon Peter (TAN)||2:12:47||Elena Plastinina (UKR)||2:35:46|
|23rd||1999-06-19||Andrew Musuva (KEN)||2:13:22||Elena Makalova (BLR)||2:29:13|
|24th||2000-06-17||Pavel Andreyev (RUS)||2:14:31||Svetlana Şepelev-Tcaci (MDA)||2:33:53|
|25th||2001-06-16||Benjamin Matolo (KEN)||2:14:25||Lyubov Belavina (RUS)||2:35:13|
|26th||2002-06-22||Elly Rono (KEN)||2:10:57||Zinaida Semenova (RUS)||2:32:21|
|27th||2003-06-21||Joseph Kamau (KEN)||2:11:22||Firiya Sultanova (RUS)||2:27:05|
|28th||2004-06-19||Vladimir Tyamchik (BLR)||2:17:59||Firiya Sultanova (RUS)||2:35:08|
|29th||2005-06-18||Wesley Ngetich (KEN)||2:13:18||Halina Karnatsevich (BLR) ||2:28:43|
|30th||2006-06-17||Sergey Lukin (RUS)||2:14:30||Svetlana Nekhorosh (UKR)||2:37:33|
|31st||2007-06-16||Wesley Ngetich (KEN)||2:15:55||Mary Akor (USA)||2:35:40|
|32nd||2008-06-21||Lamech Mokono (KEN)||2:13:39||Mary Akor (USA)||2:38:50|
|33rd||2009-06-20||Christopher Raabe (USA)||2:15:13||Mary Akor (USA)||2:36:52|
|34th||2010-06-19||Philemon Kemboi (KEN)||2:15:44||Buzunesh Deba (ETH)||2:31:35|
|35th||2011-06-19||Christopher Kipyego (KEN)||2:12:16||Yihunlish Delelecha (ETH)||2:30:39|
|36th||2012-06-16||Berhanu Girma (ETH)||2:12:24||Everlyne Lagat (KEN)||2:33:13|
|37th||2013-06-22||Bazu Worku (ETH)||2:11:12||Sarah Kiptoo (KEN)||2:26:32|
|38th||2014-06-21||Dominic Ondoro (KEN)||2:09:06||Pasca Myers (KEN)||2:33:45|
|39th||2015-06-20||Elisha Barno (KEN)||2:10:36||Jane Kibii (KEN)||2:32:06|
|40th||2016-06-18||Elisha Barno (KEN)||2:11:26||Sarah Kiptoo (KEN)||2:33:28|
- Grandma's Marathon :: Races - Grandma's Marathon
- Grandma's Marathon :: Other Info - History
- Grandma's Marathon :: Races - Races for Kids
- "Grandma's Marathon Sees Decline In Participants". KBJR TV, Inc. May 28, 2009. Retrieved 2009-06-03.
- "Grandma's runs short of entrants". Star Tribune. June 2, 2009. Retrieved 2009-06-03.
- "For some, Grandma's Marathon is the deal of a lifetime".
- Gaffe at finish line leads to photo finish at Grandma's Marathon. InFormum (2011-06-19). Retrieved on 2011-06-19.
- "Trafeh, Nelson win USA Half Marathon championships". June 22, 2013.
- "Grandma's Marathon 2014 Registration Opens July 2, 2013".
- "Grandma's Marathon 2016 results".
- "Historical results for Grandma's Marathon".
- Disqualified for post-race testing of an illegal substance.
- Jack Moran & Malcolm Heyworth (2010-06-20). Grandma's Marathon. Association of Road Racing Statisticians. Retrieved on 2011-06-19.