General Information Marathon Relay

General Information Marathon Relay


2019 Relay Race Instructions

If you’re not quite ready for the marathon or half-marathon, then join your coworkers, friends or family and participate in Mercedes-Benz Marathon 5 Person Relay! The race will start at the same time as the Mercedes-Benz Marathon & Half-Marathon. Each relay team will consist of 5 people, all being at least 12 years of age on race day. All relay team members will receive the same amenities as the half-marathon participants, including a race weekend technical running shirt and smaller version of the Mercedes-Benz Marathon finisher’s medal. Team members must submit all five entries together and must designate one team captain. You must have four members to call it a team and participate, but only teams with 5 members are eligible for awards. You will need to send only one team member to the Expo to pick up race packets. They will be given out as a team, not as individual participants.

Awards will be presented to the winning relay in each of these categories at the awards ceremony during the Post Race Block Party.

  • Men’s Team
  • Women’s Team
  • Middle School/High School Team (must include at least 2 females)*
  • Mixed Open (must include at least 2 females)
  • Masters (must include at least 2 females)

 *One award will be given in this category.  We do not distinguish between middle school and high school teams. 



Adult relay entry fee through December 31, 2018 - $250 
January 1- February 5, 2019 - $275

High School and Middle School Team entry fee through December 31, 2018 - $200
January 1–February 5, 2019 - $225

Relay team registration is only available online through and will be open until midnight of February 5, 2019. After this date, registration will only be available at the Expo. All relay team entry fees at the Expo are $275. We will close the relay field at 250 teams so register early! Entry fee is non-refundable. There is NO race day registration.

When registering online at it is not important to list the runners in correct relay leg order. If you have changes to your team you will need to notify us to make those changes.  For example - team members, shirt sizes or change in relay category. 



The five-person Relay Event will begin with the Mercedes-Benz Marathon and Half-Marathon at 7:03 a.m. on Sunday, February 10, 2019 at Railroad Park in Downtown Birmingham. 



Each team will consist of five runners. The relay is held on the same course as the individual marathon and run at the same time. Each Relay team is assigned a single timing chip that is attached to a timing belt that will be passed from each runner. The timing belt must be passed off to the next runner of the relay after crossing over the timing pad at the relay exchange. Details about the timing chip exchange are covered below. 

Should the runner of the FIRST LEG of the relay wish to also continue running in the Mercedes-Benz Marathon or Mercedes-Benz Half-Marathon that runner must complete, including payment, an individual entry form for the full or half marathon. This person will wear the relay team number and the timing belt as well as their own individual number and chip. Your relay timing chip will be attached to a belt worn around your waist and your individual timing chip will be attached to your individual race bib.



The Relay Exchange Areas are as follows and will have blow up arches indicating the entrance to the exchange. 

Exchanges #1 & #4 - Avondale Park on 5th Ave. S. 

Exchange #2 - Alabama Ballet on 1st Ave., S. 

Exchange #3 - Glen Iris Elementary School on 11th Place S. 

Each marathon relay team will be given one timing belt which will have the "team" timing chip attached. This timing belt is to be worn by the next runner once they have crossed over the timing pad at each relay exchange. The last runner will take off the timing belt at the finish line and leave it with finish line officials.

Relay runners will need to be alert for their upcoming exchange zone. This area will be designated by signs and will be to the side of the marathon course after crossing over the timing mat allowing for room to pass off the timing belt. Please be considerate of other runners during the transition.



6 Hour Time Limit - Must maintain a consistent pace of at least 13:44 minutes per mile. Relay teams need to keep this in mind and may need to alternate slower runners with faster runners to keep within the time limits. Relay Team Member #3 must stay in front the balloon lady when the course splits.  If they do not stay in front of her then the team member will be sent to the finish line and will be disqualified. Team members still at remaining relay exchanges will not be able to run.



 It is very important that your relay team member #3 understands how the course has a "Split" so the full marathon and relay marathon participants can continue on the double loop course. Click here for information regarding the "Split."


  • The first runner will need to arrive at the start line in plenty of time to park the car, warm-up, check in gear, etc.
  • All other relay runners will need to be at their designated relay exchange areas in plenty of time to allow them to check in their warm-up gear, warm-up, etc. Although transportation is provided to each exchange point, it is the responsibility of each runner to be on time and ready to run the next leg of the relay.
  • While some runners will want to provide their own transportation to their exchange areas, many others will need transportation. For those relay runners, transportation will be provided to their respective relay exchange area via yellow school busses. Busses will be located on Morris Avenue.   Each bus will be marked #1, #2, #3, #4 to designate which bus to ride on to get to your exchange area. Please remember that many roads along the course will be closed, so you are encouraged to use the transportation provided.
  • If you are providing your own transportation to your relay exchange area, remember that the marathon course will be closed off to traffic starting at 7:00 a.m. You will not be able to drive on the actual course once runners start arriving in that area. Please use common sense and DO NOT PARK DIRECTLY ON THE COURSE! Please plan ahead.
  • When runners have completed their leg of the race, there will be transportation available back to the finish line area. Look for the bus or signs directing you to your bus at the exchange area for your ride back. 



We do not have bag checks at the relay exchange stations. The official weekend Bag Check will be located at Railroad Park in quadrant 2 near the Start Line on14th St., S. 

A bag check claim tag is located on your race bib or tags will be available to attach to your bag at the bag check area. All items must be in a CLEAR PLASTIC BAG.  We will have some available if you do not have one.  If you want to make something available for yourself to put on after your relay leg, then you will need to work that out with your team member running the leg after you. Any gear not claimed will be donated to a local homeless shelter.  


4  Members to race, 5 Members to be eligible for awards

Medals along with a finish line amenity (to be determined) will be given as a single package for each team at the finish line on race day. The final leg #5 team member is then responsible for distributing these items to their team. Please be sure each relay team member is aware of this so no one is looking for a medal at the finish line or at a relay exchange point. Awards will be presented to the winning relay team in each category at the awards ceremony at the Post Race Block Party in the enclosed parking garage at the EDPA building between 1:00 – 1:30 p.m. If your team wins its division then someone from your team must be present to get the award. We do not mail out awards. Please plan your travel accordingly. All team results will be posted on our website after the race.

NOTICE: Due to insurance regulations, unregistered runners, unauthorized vehicles, bicycles, skateboards, roller blades, strollers, baby joggers and other wheeled devices and animals are prohibited in the race.



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