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Twin Cities Marathon ranked among best races in the world

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The race that's been dubbed one of the most beautiful urban marathons in the country has been named one of the best marathons in the world by The Active Times.

The Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon, which is typically held the first weekend of October, ranked No. 5 on the list of top 25 marathons in the world.

Here's why:

"Set during the most scenic time of fall, this race has been unofficially dubbed, “The Most Beautiful Urban Marathon in America” by many racers and supporters. And the beauty goes far beyond the lake views throughout the flat course. Festivities are in full-swing the entire marathon weekend with fun events for the entire family. Twin Cities makes their marathon a celebration, attracting over 300,000 spectators, 5,000 volunteers, over 25 entertainers and Cheer Zones, and post-race activities."

Here are the top 5 marathons in the world:

  1. TCS New York City Marathon
  2. Bank of America Chicago Marathon
  3. Boston Marathon
  4. Marathon Du Medoc in France
  5. Twin Cities Marathon

For the rankings, The Active Times looked at statistics from Running USA, which named the largest races with the highest number of finishers – Twin Cities Marathon ranks No. 9 on that list with 8,857 finishers in 2013, scenic views from the course and the number of cheering fans who line the course, among other things.

The publication then created a scoring system and awarded points for everything from course quality, event organization, and ratings based on reviews on and information from The Active Times reader survey.

The first Twin Cities Marathon was held in 1982 and has since become a top 10 U.S. marathon, earning several accolades in its history.

In 2012, it was named one of the "World's Top 10 Marathons" by Departures magazine, according to the race's website. And in 2006, Running Times magazine ranked the Twin Cities Marathon as the third most competitive marathon for American runners.

It was also host to the 2013 and 2014 U.S. Marathon Championships.

At this year's marathon, which was held Oct. 5, a first-time marathoner, Tyler Pennell of North Carolina, won the race. See a history of winners here.

For more on the history of the Twin Cities Marathon, click here.

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