The Virgin Money London Marathon broke its own world record as an incredible 414,168 applicants from the UK and overseas registered for a ballot place in the 2019 event.

Last year’s record total of 386,050 applicants established London as the most popular marathon on the planet. The new world record total of 414,168 for 2019 represents an increase of 7.3 per cent on last year.

347,876 of the applicants for 2019 were from the UK. This is 20,376 up from the previous UK applicant record of 327,500 for the 2018 event. A total of 66,292 people applied in the overseas ballot.

Just under 55% of the UK applications for 2019 were from people who have never run a marathon and more than 44% of the total UK applicants were women.

“This world record reflects the extraordinary inspiration of the 38th London Marathon on 22 April and our Spirit of London theme,” said Hugh Brasher, Event Director for London Marathon Events. “One of our goals is to inspire people to take up sport and it’s fantastic that more than 190,000 people from the UK have been inspired to apply to run a marathon for the first time in 2019.

“At the first London Marathon back in 1981, fewer than 300 of the 6,300 finishers were women. More than 154,000 women from the UK have applied to run in 2019 and, for the second successive year, there are more female than male first-time marathon runners from the UK (50.2% v 49.8%).

“Our #Spirit of London campaign celebrated the extraordinary stories of so many runners, volunteers and supporters of the London Marathon over the years and, through its massive reach on social media, will have inspired many to apply. We were particularly proud to welcome the two teams of firefighters who were among the first responders to the Grenfell fire, Stephen’s Team, who were running to raise money for the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust on the 25th anniversary of his murder, and Charlie Guenigault, the off-duty police officer who was very badly injured in the London Bridge terrorist attack.

“The London Marathon continues to have an extraordinary impact that has inspired profound social change. It is an iconic event, recognised as the world’s greatest marathon, that compels people to take up running and to raise millions for charity. In addition, The London Marathon Charitable Trust has enabled thousands more to get active through its funding of a huge range of recreational projects.”

Entrants will be notified of the ballot results in October 2018.