The eyes of the athletics world will be on the English capital city during April as the 43rd edition of the prestigious London Marathon takes place.

Around 50,000 participants will compete in this year’s event, which will be headlined by the elite level men’s and women’s races.

Read on as we look at this year’s route for the London Marathon before assessing the main British contenders in this most gruelling of events.

London Marathon route

The elite races start in Blackheath, Lewisham, and initially head east through Charlton and Woolwich for three miles.

The route turns west and passes the Cutty Sark in Greenwich after six to seven miles. It crosses the River Thames at Tower Bridge around halfway.

There is then a loop around the east end of London, past Canary Wharf in Docklands, before the runners head west again along the Highway.

The Embankment to Parliament Square are the next ports of call, before Birdcage Walk and the final corner in front of Buckingham Palace to finish on The Mall.

Farah and McColgan lead British challenge

Mo Farah and Eilish McColgan will be the favourites to be the top British runners in the men’s and women’s elite races with most leading sportsbooks.

The top live betting bookmakers sites will undoubtedly see plenty of action if the British pair are in contention when their respective races reach the latter stages. 

Farah is competing in his fourth London Marathon and will be keen to improve on his previous finishes of eighth (2014), third (2018) and fifth (2019).

His personal best and British record of 2:05:11 was set when he triumphed in the 2018 Chicago Marathon and a repeat of that performance would put him in contention.

Kenya’s Amos Kipruto won the men’s race in a time of 2:04:39 last year, highlighting the level Farah will need to achieve if he is to emerge victorious.

With the four-time Olympic gold medal winner set to retire at the end of the season, he is sure to be fired up to run a big race in the London Marathon.

Emile Cairess could give Farah and the rest of the field a run for their money after his excellent performance at the European Cross Country Championships last December.

The 25-year-old claimed the silver medal on that occasion and has been widely tipped to be Britain’s next big star in long-distance running.

McColgan enters the women’s elite race on a mission to emulate her mum Liz, who famously won the London Marathon in 1996.

The 32-year-old was superb in 2022, winning four Commonwealth and European medals to cement her status as one of the world’s top female athletes.

Jess Piasecki and Charlotte Purdue will also be among a strong British contingent in the women’s race, but McColgan is strongly fancied to lead them a merry dance.