The fifth annual Marine Corps Marathon will begin with a bang -- that of a 105-millimeter horitzer -- at 9 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 2, near the Iwo Jima monument in Arlington.

Race cordinator Capt. Jay Paxton said yesterday that more than 8,300 runners had registered for the race as of Wednesday. "We hope to be the second-largest marathon in the country," he said. "We've already passed Chicago and we hope to beat Boston. We won't get the 16,000 starting in New York on Sunday. But it should be between us and Honolulu for second." n

Deadline for written entries will be Monday. But runners also may register at the Marriot Twin Bridges in Arlington on Thursday (1 p.m. to 10 p.m.), Friday (11 a.m. to 10 p.m.) and Saturday (8 a.m. to 10 p.m.). The fee is $7.50.

Among those already entered are the top three men finishers last year: Navy flyer Phil Camp of Milton, Fla., whose winning time was 2:19.35; Will Albers of Fairfax and Dave McDonald of Pittsburgh.

The second- and third-place finishers among the women in 1979 -- Trudy Rapp of Alexandria and Laura DeWald of Arlington -- are expected to run. Marine Lt. Joanna Martin, last year's winner (2:58:26), has been reassigned, Paxton said, and will be unable to compete.

The 26-mile 385-yard course (sanctioned by The Athletics Congress) is much the same as last year's: it begins and ends at the Iowa Jima monument, winding its way around the Pentagon, through Georgetown and down the middle of the Mall.

Parking will be available to runners and spectators in the Pentagon North lot. Shuttle bus service to and from the monument will be available to both groups, although "priority will be given to the runners," Paxton said.