Start Zones and Relay Start Procedure:
The first runners of relay teams will start together with the individual marathon runners. They should position themselves in the designated start zone based on their planned pace per kilometer. We kindly ask everyone to align themselves in the appropriate start zone according to their planned pace in order to avoid disrupting other runners.
- Zone 1: Sub 4:30 (Sub 3:10:00 marathon) (Number 1 on the bib, preceding the digits)
- Zone 2: 4:30-5:00 (Between 3:10:00 – 3:30:00 marathon) (Number 2 on the bib, preceding the digits)
- Zone 3: 5:00-5:30 (Between 3:30:00 – 3:52:00 marathon) (Number 3 on the bib, preceding the digits)
- Zone 4: 5:30-6:00 (Between 3:52:00 – 4:13:00 marathon) (Number 4 on the bib, preceding the digits)
- Zone 5: 6:00-6:30 (Between 4:13:00 – 4:34:00 marathon) (Number 5 on the bib, preceding the digits)
- Zone 6: Above 6:30 (Above 4:34:00 marathon) (Number 6 on the bib, preceding the digits)
The start zone markings are the same for individual marathon runners, 4-person relay teams, and marathon pairs. For relay teams, the pace of the first team member matters when indicating the planned pace.
At our event, everyone must enter the designated start zone according to their predetermined planned pace. This approach aims to reduce the commotion during the first kilometers after the start, minimizing unnecessary overtaking. When runners of the same pace start from the same zone, the beginning of the race becomes more calm and predictable. The labels on the bib help indicate the proper start zone, and these will be checked when entering the zone. The label number matches the zone number.
For relay teams, the start zone sticker will be on the team bib. Each participant can only enter the start zone corresponding to the zone number on their bib. Participants who didn’t provide a planned pace can request a start zone sticker at the event center before the start. Without a start zone sticker, one can only enter the last start zone.
The time flag indicating the pace will always be positioned at the end of the respective time zone, which means it should always be positioned closer to the starting gate from where participants enter the zone. After entering, proceed towards the starting gate to allow runners behind you to join the zone. Start zone gates will open 20 minutes before the start and close 5 minutes before the start. After that, participants can only position themselves towards the back of the field.
If you encounter a runner with an inappropriate bib sticker in your start zone, kindly ask them to choose the start zone corresponding to their target finish time. This helps prevent confusion and potential accidents.
Segmented Start at the 38th SPAR Budapest Marathon® Festival:
Participants of the marathon relay distance will start in multiple waves along with the individual marathon runners. Each wave starts every 3 minutes. At the front of the following waves, organizers will be present to guide the participants towards the starting line. After reaching the starting line, we will initiate their start approximately 1.5 minutes later. The same procedure applies to participants starting in later waves.
Gates between waves will not be reopened!
Items left at the start zones will be collected immediately after the start and donated to the Hungarian Red Cross for charitable purposes.