One of the largest sporting events to come through the state of Illinois is the Chicago Marathon .  This race has managed to become more and more popular around the running community, and in recent years has been considered one of the most important marathons in the world.  Numerous world records have been set during this race.

            This is an open race, which means that anybody is allowed to participate.  However, the total number of participants is limited to 40,000, so don’t be late registering.  Although qualifying times are not required to enter the race, registration is necessary.  For more information, visit this Marathon Registration page.  Note that because of the race’s popularity, registration is closed months before the marathon is held.  All race times are recorded before the 6.5 hour mark has passed, and are available for viewing in various locations including the website.

            The lucky winner of the 2006 Chicago Marathon will walk away with $650,000 in prize money.   Prizes are handed out for both male and female categories.   The 2005 male winner was from Kenya, while the female winner was from the United States.   Check out this List of Past Winners , provided by Wikipedia.