The North Pole Marathon is a classic 42.2-km run listed in the Guinness Book of records as the Northernmost Marathon on Earth. The course lies on a small, 4-km loop, covered with hard snow and ice of the Arctic Ocean. Male and female runners, as well as teams of three or more, can take part in the race. A half marathon is also an option. The race starts from a drifting North Pole camp, which usually floats around the North Pole at 89N-90N.
The first North Pole Marathon took place in 2002 as a solo run by Richard Donovan who finished in 3:48:12. In 2003, the race already had ten competitors despite temperatures -29 °C and difficult snow conditions. The North pole marathon is the only certified marathon that is run entirely 'on' water of the Arctic Ocean. It takes place on thick ice above 3,600 m of Arctic Ocean on the top of the world. Over 550 people from 55 countries have participated in the marathon. The finishers can join the exclusive Marathon Grand Slam Club for those who ran a marathon on each of the seven continents, plus the North Pole.
The North Pole Marathon entry fee is about €16,000 which includes flights from Svalbard (Norway) to the North Pole camp, entry to the Marathon, helicopter flights over the North Pole, t-shirt, medal, certificate, and professional photos and video of the race.