Legacy of the marathon


May 6, 2012. In 2012, the Vancouver International Marathon Society launched an ambitious redesign of the Marathon, which attracted over 4000 participants to the city. Winning several awards by the likes of Forbes, CNN, and USA Today, the Marathon takes runners on a scenic journey, featuring 70% shoreline, cherry blossom trees, mountain views, and the Stanley Park Seawall. And for the first time in event history, the Seawall became closed to runners.

Ethiopia’s Gezahgn Eshetu became the first winner on the event’s new iconic and award-winning course, clocking in at 2:21:51. Eshetu narrowly edged out two-time defending champion Benard Onsare of Kenya, who came in second at 2:22:16. Canada’s Ryan Day finished as the Top Canadian and third overall with 2:29:22.

In the women’s division, British ultramarathoner Ellie Greenwood took home her first win in the BMO Vancouver Marathon at 2:42:16. Past champion Mary Akor also made her return, finishing with 2:46:01 to secure another podium finish. Canadian Catrin Jones, who would eventually return to achieve several more top 5 finishes, came third with 2:52:11.

In the Half, 2010 champion Kip Kangogo returned to take home his second title on a new Half Marathon course. Local Natasha Fraser, now Wodak, led the women home to win her first Vancouver Half Marathon title in 1:15:12.

Course Map

The Course

In 2012, the Vancouver International Marathon Society launched an ambitious redesign of all four courses at the BMO Vancouver Marathon. A new point-to-point course, the stunning Marathon route starts in Queen Elizabeth Park and leads runners on a scenic tour of Vancouver’s neighbourhoods, around the world-renowned Stanley Park Seawall, and towards an exciting downtown Finish Line.

1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 Marathon Course. Vancouver Marathon RUNVAN


  1. Gezahgn Eshetu (ETH), 2:21:51
  2. Benard Onsare (KEN), 2:22:16
  3. Ryan Day (CAN), 2:29:22



  1. Ellie Greenwood (GBR), 2:42:16
  2. Mary Akor (USA), 2:46:01
  3. Catrin Jones (CAN), 2:52:11



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