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The London Marathon tracker allows you to follow the progress of friends and family

If you've got friends and family running, don't forget to download the London Marathon tracker app

london marathon tracker
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If you've spectated the London Marathon before – or indeed any big city marathon – you'll know how stressful it can be trying to spot a runner you know on the course – especially if it's a loved one, who you've watched endure the rigours of marathon training in the months leading up to the race.

Thankfully, the Official TCS London Marathon App allows you to follow the live progress of multiple runners, so you'll know exactly where to stand on the course to spot them – and when to be there – so you can successfully cheer them on!

If you're wanting to track a runner this year – whether on the course or at home – it's worth downloading the London Marathon tracker app now, so you're well prepped in advance of the weekend – from either the iOS App Store or Google Play Store.

How to use the London Marathon tracker

The London Marathon tracker app is very easy to use – within the tracking section, you simply search for a participant using either their name or race number and hit 'add' to add them to a list. You can track an unlimited number of participants – and that includes celebrities and elite athletes.

The app will notify you each time your tracked runners have a hit a 5km split and will give you their predicted finishing time, based on their current pace.

If your runner is carrying a phone, they may opt to share their actual live location (tracked via GPS instead of the chips worn by runners to calculate their location). Participants can allow up to three spectators to find their live location. This feature is now available for virtual participants, too. Followers of virtual participants will also be able to see their position tracked against the traditional London Marathon course.

This year, the app also features a Belief Booster, which enables supporters to share encouraging messages for participants. A selection of messages will be displayed on the LED gantry as participants cross the finish line in The Mall.

How else can I spot and find participants?

To be extra sure to catch a glimpse of your runner, it's also worth noting down their predicted mile splits – if they're going for a certain time – to help you guestimate when you might see them at certain points on the course.

Another handy tip is to look out for the pacer flags and use those as a gauge on general progress. If you know that someone is following the 3:45 pacer from the red start, then when you see the pacers with the 3:30 red flags, that's your cue to get to the barriers and start scanning the crowd because the next flag should be the one they're following.

Making yourself obvious to the runner is also a great way to make sure all that tracking pays off, so think big banners. Here are some race day sign ideas.

Your runner can help, too, by wearing something unique or bright – and letting you know their outfit in advance.

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