Detroit Free Press Marathon, Half Marathons & 5K

Sunday, October 20, 2024 • Detroit, MI • Course Map

One of a select few races around the world that can truly be called an international race — its course really does take runners across two nations — the Detroit Free Press Talmer Bank Marathon & Half Marathons feature a route that takes runners through the streets of the Motor City and over into Ontario, Canada, for a run along the banks of the Detroit River.

The race even takes runners underground for a mile-long stretch of the race, between the seventh and eighth miles through the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel under the river.

Note: The info below describes the race’s international half marathon, which runs through both the U.S. and Canada. The race also offers a U.S.-only half marathon course; route maps for both are provided on the course maps page.

Mostly fast and flat and run on paved surfaces throughout, the race starts in downtown Detroit at the intersection of West Fort Street and 2nd Avenue, next to the Detroit Media Partnership building. From there, the course follows a somewhat circuitous route through the city, running for a long stretch along West Fort, followed by across the Ambassador Bridge and through the underwater Detroit-Windsor Tunnel.

Though it’s mostly level, the race experiences uphill stretches just before runners cross the Ambassador Bridge over into Ontario between miles 2 and 3, and when they emerge from the tunnel around the mile 8 marker.

After crossing the bridge, and giving up the elevation they’ve just gained on the downhill side, runners then head into the campus of Ontario’s University of Windsor. The out-and-back run through campus then gives way to a roughly two-mile-long straightaway run along the banks of the river, along Riverside Drive through the Canadian city of Windsor.

Once they reach Goyeau Street, runners then start making the turn that takes them through the tunnel and back into the United States for the remaining few miles of the race.

The finish line lies close the starting line, along West Fort Street next the DMP building, which is also the home of the Detroit Free Press newspaper. All throughout the course, bands will be along the way to provide music and pump up the participants, the field of which will be open to runners, walkers and wheelchair participants.

And there’s lots to see of the revitalized city center and riverfront areas along the way, including Campus Martius Park near the heart of Detroit’s downtown, just before runners cross the finish line.


The Detroit Free Press Half Marathon was rated as one of the Most Underrated Half Marathons.

Race Weather & Climate

Nestled in southern Michigan on the banks of the river that shares the same name, the city of Detroit typically sees mild to moderately cool weather in the early weeks of fall. In October, record temperatures here have reached as low as 24°F (in 1988) and as high as 92°F (in 1963).

On race day (Oct. 20), the average low is 43ºF and the average high is 60ºF.

Course Map

See the race route maps for the Detroit Free Press Half Marathons here.

Starting Times

  • 7:00 AM – international half marathon
  • 10:30 AM – U.S.-only half marathon

Course Time Limit

4 hours


See race website


To reserve your spot in the 2024 running of the Detroit Free Press-Talmer Bank Marathon, International Half Marathon, U.S. Half Marathon or 5K race, register online at here.

Official Race Website


Ever run in the Detroit Free Press Half Marathon? Share your impressions here, or post your review in the Comments below.

See more races in: October, Michigan

4 comments… add one
  • Bob Erwin March 31, 2019, 7:59 pm

    I signed up for the full but I think I want to switch to the half. Can this be done

  • Paul Mergentime December 5, 2016, 8:36 am

    it is December and I still haven’t received my race shirt from this year’s event. Between this and finisher pic not sending meyou pic that I paid for. probably will not participate in your event next year.

  • Carole Fisher September 26, 2016, 9:14 am

    When running in Canada for the international half marathon, does anyone know about data charges on cell phones

  • Kim Beane May 27, 2016, 2:00 pm

    Can you walk
    Can someone in a automated wheelchair join


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