What you need to know about the London Marathon 2021 app

·5-min read

You’ve dropped off your official kitbag, collected your bib and planned your journey to the startline. Or, perhaps, if you’re taking part in the Virtual Virgin Money London Marathon, you’ve diligently plotted your 26.2 route. But, have you downloaded the Official London Marathon 2021 app ahead of the race on Sunday?

If you’re taking part in the virtual event, the only way you can take part is via the app, so, if you haven’t already, you might want to think about downloading it fairly swiftly.

And if you’re participating in the in-person event from Blackheath to Westminster, it will make life for you – and your support squad – a whole lot easier. The RW team had a play around with the app to give you the headlines…

NB: All participants should have received an email containing all the details they need to log in to the app, including email address, booking reference ID and date of birth. You can download the app for free here in the iOS App Store and Google Play Store.

For London Marathon participants:

It contains your Bib Number Collection Code

Within the ‘my marathon’ section of the app, you’ll find a QR code that you’ll need to collect your bib number at the Virgin Money London Marathon Running Show at ExCel London from 29 September – 2 October. This section also contains all the information you’ll need for Sunday, including your start time, recommended arrival time, start colour and even the best train station to arrive at.

Your friends and family will be able to track you

By clicking ‘enable GPS permission’ within the app, your supporters will be able to see your accurate location during the race on Sunday. All they will need to do is download the app and search for your name or bib number.

You’ll need ample data and phone battery

To ensure your supporters can track you accurately on the day, you’ll need to make sure your phone is fully charged and not in low power mode before you set off. Make sure you have ample data available in your phone package, your data is turned on and your WiFi is turned off.

There’s a course map

This shows where every mile marker is on the course so you can easily familiarise yourself with the route before race day. You can also view where the drinks stations are located, too, allowing you to plan your hydration strategy in advance.

You can view your race result

After the race, simply navigate to ‘my result’ (under 'my marathon') and you’ll be able to view your result as soon as you’ve crossed the line. You can search and view your mates’ results, too!

For virtual event participants:

There’s a practice run option, which you can do beforehand

There is a 5K practice run available on the app (simply navigate to ‘practice 5K’ on the app home screen), which gives you a chance to trial the app and get familiar with all the features before starting. You can restart this any number of times.

You can hit pause at any time

On Sunday 3 October, you can choose to run any time from 00:00 to 22:00. Although you won’t be able to restart your run, you can hit pause at any time. Your elapsed time will continue, and this will be your finish time displayed in the results.

Virtual crowds will spur you on

During your race, crowd noise will be triggered at certain intervals for extra motivation. Plus, every 0.5 miles, you’ll be given an exclusive audio commentary featuring famous voices to keep you inspired and entertained.

Two people can track your actual location

Friends and family will be able to track your progress along the official London Marathon course, but you can only also choose two spectators to view your actual location. Navigate to ‘GPS permission’ on the app home screen and enter the email addresses of the two spectators you would like to share your live location with. Entries need to be submitted by 2 October at 23:59. Remember to turn on live location before you start your run – this module won’t be accessible once your race has started.

You’ll get a digital certificate at the end

Once you’ve logged your 26.2 miles, the app will know when you have run the distance and will automatically log your finish time. You’ll then have the chance to share an official finish-line selfie with your event stats. Your official time will be automatically uploaded to the results within 24 hours. Once uploaded, you’ll be able to download your digital finisher’s certificate.

For in-person spectators:

You can track an unlimited number of participants

And that includes celebrities and elite athletes! Under ‘tracking’, just search for the name of the runners you’d like to track and hit ‘add’ and you can view their live location via the interactive course map. You can find all the best places to spot your runner here.

There’s in-app donate button

For those fundraising with a registered Virgin Money Giving site, supporters can give money during the event. Navigate to your runner’s profile and hit the ‘donate’ icon.

You’ll receive regular updates on your runner

Every five kilometres you’ll get an update on how your runner is getting on so you can plan the best viewing points to go and cheer them on!

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