22/04/2017 09:01 BST

Virgin London Marathon 2017: Route, Road Closures And Start Time

There's no atmosphere quite like it.

The annual London Marathon is set to take place on Sunday 23 April.

More than 50,000 runners will take to the streets of London for the 26.2 mile race.

Runners will tackle the gruelling course around the capital, beginning at Blackheath and finishing on The Mall beginning on Sunday morning.

Stephen Pond via Getty Images
Runners set out from the start line for the 2016 marathon

A record 253,930 people entered the public ballot last May.

This is the 37th London Marathon and thousands of spectators are expected to turn out to watch the race, whether supporting a friend or loved one, or simply soaking up the atmosphere.

What is the course for the London Marathon?

The route passes through Woolwich, Greenwich, over Tower Bridge, along Victoria Embankment, through Parliament square and ending up in front of Buckingham Palace.

Virgin Money London Marathon
Click here for a larger version

What road closures are in place?

There are extensive road closures in place on the day, as well as in the days leading up to the race.

For a full list of road closures, click here.

There is also a real-time road closure map available here.

What time does the marathon start?

9am - Elite wheelchair race followed by Paralympic runners 

9.20am - Elite Women

10am - Elite Men and mass start

Joel Ford via Getty Images
Thousands of Londoners turn out to support runners in the marathon

How can I watch the marathon?

The atmosphere in London on marathon day is electric, so it’s worth going along in person to catch a glimpse of the event if you can.

Some of the best viewing points include:

  • Tower Bridge (but get there early for a good spot)

  • Mudchute

  • Westferry

  • Final stretch along the Mall

There will also be coverage of the marathon on television.

  • 8.30-9.55am Coverage begins, BBC Two

  • 9.55am-3pm Full race coverage, BBC One

  • 6-7pm Highlights, BBC Two

Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
Some people choose to run in lycra - others choose more unusual kit

How do I track a specific runner?

The London Marathon app has a function to track specific runners, so you can make sure to spot friends and family you may be cheering on.

The app updates automatically when your chosen runner crosses the start line and at every subsequent timing point at 5km intervals.

It also predicts when they will come in the overall race ranking.

Who is running?

Every year, many celebrities and other well-known figures run the marathon for charity.

Some of this year’s runners include...

  • Broadcaster Chris Evans - Children in Need

  • BBC newsreader Sophie Raworth - has not revealed who she is running for

  • Olympic rower and would-be MP James Cracknell - Headway and the RNLI

  • Columnist Katie Hopkins - National Brain Appeal

  • Gogglebox star Baasit Siddiqui - Gem’s Cash For Kids

  • BBC 6 Music DJ Giles Peterson - The Steve Reid Foundation

What is the weather forecast?

It looks like runners are in for good conditions on Sunday.

The forecast is mainly cloud with temperatures between 10-13C - not too warm and no rain!