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BAA increases field size for 2014 Boston Marathon - Metro US

BAA increases field size for 2014 Boston Marathon

 The start of the 2013 Boston Marathon. Credit: Getty Images Next year’s Boston Marathon will have 9,000 more participants than this year’s event.
Credit: Getty Images

The 2014 Boston Marathon field size will include 9,000 more runners than normal because of increased interest in participation, organizers announced Thursday.

The field size for the 118th Boston Marathon will be 36,000 runners. For the three previous marathons, the field size was 27,000.

Organizers said they worked with the state, as well as the eight cities and towns along the marathon route, to increase the field size.The Boston Athletic Association organizes the Boston Marathon.

“The BAA is aware of the significantly increased interest in registering for the 2014 Boston Marathon,” BAA Executive Director Tom Grilk said in a statement. “We understand many marathoners and qualifiers want to run Boston in 2014, and we appreciate the support and patience that the running community has demonstrated because of the bombings that occurred this past spring.”

Many long-time and first-time runners have expressed interest in running the 2014 marathon to show support for the event, the city and the victims after a pair of bombs exploded at the finish line earlier this year, killing three people and injuring more than 260 others.

Registration will take place online and begins Sept. 9. A rolling admission schedule will be used to allow for the fastest qualifiers to sign up first, the BAA said.

A special registration period took place this month for marathoners who reached the halfway point this year, but were stopped because of the attacks. Of those 5,624 runners, more than 4,500 have signed up, the BAA said.

The 2014 Boston Marathon will be held April 21.

Follow Michael Naughton on Twitter @metrobosmike.

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