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Looking for the Best Boston Marathon Qualifying Races?

View our list of marathons that give you the best chance to BQ.

Race Dates

2018: Sunday, September 23, 2018
2017: Sunday, September 17, 2017

Course Information

Profile: Rolling Hills
Type: Multiple Loops
Surface: Road/Pavement
Certified?: Yes

Race Day Weather

Mean Temp.: 62°F (16°C)
Average High: 72°F (22°C)
Average Low: 53° F (11°C)

Historical Weather

PR Score & Course Score

PR Score: 96.44
Course Score: 97.52

Race Size

2017: 292 Finishers
2016: 491 Finishers
2015: 446 Finishers

BQ Percentages

2018: N/A
2017: 4.1%
2016: 3.5%

Miscellaneous Information

Pace Groups?: Yes

Marathon Pace Bands & Elevation Wrist Bands

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Course Description

The mostly double loop Rochester Marathon course starts in Maplewood Park travels through the north side of Rochester. After crossing the Genesee River several times, the runners finish at Frontier Field.

Marathon Rankings

The Rochester Marathon was the 203rd largest marathon in the U.S. last year and was the 146th largest in 2016.

Last year 4.1% of finishers qualified for the Boston Marathon and 3.5% of runners qualified for Boston in 2016.

This gives the Rochester Marathon the 380th highest percentage of Boston Marathon qualifiers in the U.S. last year and the 430th highest percentage in 2016.

Its Course Score of 97.52 ranks it as the 354th fastest marathon course in the U.S. and the 17th fastest course in New York.

The typical race time temperature and humidity levels are above the ideal range for optimal marathon performance. This, coupled with the Course Score, gives the Rochester Marathon a PR Score of 96.44. This PR Score ranks it as the 368th fastest marathon in the U.S. and the 14th fastest in New York.

Learn more about PR Scores and Course Scores on the FAQ page.

Elevation Chart

Max Elevation: 505 feet (153m)
Min Elevation: 244 feet (74m)


Recent Rochester Marathon Reviews

2.5 Stars from 4 Reviews
View all Reviews

review of 2017 Rochester Marathon.   

4 / 5 Stars


First part of race heads down hill then back up to start second loop. Finish not at start and the tail end has a short but tough hill 2 just short of 2 miles from finish.

Race Tips

Get out in from early as course narrows onto trail.

2-3 miles in. Almost as fast to "powerwalk" last hill as it is to run. good stretch opportunity to make a strong finish.

Logistical Tips (Hotels, Restaurants, Parking, Discounts, etc.)

Yellowjacket Racing runs a very good race!

review of 2017 Rochester Marathon.   

4 / 5 Stars


This is a hilly course right up to a slight up hill finish. The temperature was middle 70's. I trained on hills for my long runs and I still had trouble maintaining my pace on the second loop. The downhill's toward the end was as painful as the uphills.

Race Tips

I would make this a training marathon for another fall marathon if you would like a BQ. After running this, you'll be ready for the marathon you would like to qualify on.

Logistical Tips (Hotels, Restaurants, Parking, Discounts, etc.)

review of 2016 Rochester Marathon.   

1 / 5 Stars


Extremely hilly. If you want to qualify for Boston, avoid this race!

Race Tips

Save your energy in the early miles because the hills in the middle and end of the race will destroy you.

Logistical Tips (Hotels, Restaurants, Parking, Discounts, etc.)

review of 2016 Rochester Marathon.   

1 / 5 Stars


The course was awful. Hills, hills, hills.

Race Tips

Expect a gigantic hill near the end. Everyone walked up it.

Logistical Tips (Hotels, Restaurants, Parking, Discounts, etc.)

Finish Time Equivalent

If you ran the Rochester Marathon in 4:51:00, what would your time in the Boston Marathon be?

See how your race times would compare on other marathon courses using the Marathon Time Converter Tool.