And the 2011 Reviews Come Rolling In

First off, if you haven’t read about the people responsible for this race, then click this link before you go any further.

OK, welcome back. Now, if we read too many more like this, it’ll go to ours heads. But don’t worry, we can handle it…compiled  from multiple sources…

Matt Walsh, 2011 Men’s Champion and course record holder (via Facebook):

It was a great, great race; probably the most fun I’ve had in a long time!

Marty Brown (via blog comment)

Racing on roads, trails, tris, etc., for the better part of the last 40 years…this was one cool race!! Innovative and challenging!!! With out a doubt the volunteers from check-in to throughout the course to finish (not to mention the cheerleaders!!!) were THE BEST I have ever encountered hands down! A proper letter of thanks is forthcoming!!!!

Ben Mandeville (via Facebook):

I ruined my shoes, got stung by a bee, walked for the first time ever in a race and missed a water stop. Epic run, can’t wait for next year

My Name is Phil (via

I run a lot of trail races and have enjoyed many courses, but this is near the top and by far the best course in the New York City area. Great technical sections separate out the field and the flats make for some speedy times. The weather opened up and with the previous rain gave us some great muddy sections and a fabulous feel to the course.

Maggie Windsor (via Facebook):

I just want to say – almost a full week after the race and I am still excited about it. I keep talking about it to people who look at me like I am crazy to run 13 miles, let alone in the woods… as soon as the sign-up is available for 2012, I am there.

Gaetano1027 (via

Excellent 1st time at this race! The trails were well marked and the MUD made it so much better. It should become a permanent part of the race each year! [Ed.  Yeah, I’ve been thinking about that] The overall mood was very uplifting and an awesome finish area and tons of food!

Tom Dente (via Facebook):

…congratulations on creating and organizing such a great race! It just keeps getting better. Thanks for making such a unique event for this area!

Yelling Stop Blog:

First, let me say what a great, well-run race this was. The course was terrific and well-marked, the volunteers were enthusiastic and numerous, and they even had cheerleaders at the start and the finish. …I really can’t think of one thing wrong with the race today, they even arranged for perfect weather.[more]

Annabel Saunders (via blog comment)

Really enjoyed the run. It went like clockwork – great pre-race instructions, polite co-runners, solid direction and much needed encouragement at road crossings, timely water stops, plenty of water crossings and mud, envigorating cheerleading at the finish, ample post-race refreshments, lightening fast results, and perfect weather.
We will be back with friends!

OliverNY (via

Well organized and friendly race. Every year is an improvement: – trail marking was much improved from last year,- tag timing is a big plus,- two waves starts helped congestion.

Jodi Berkowitz (via Facebook):

A great, big thank you to … the countless volunteers who made it happen. It was a fantastic, muddy, exhausting experience!

Jenster26 (via Twitter)

Thank you @PaineToPain for a very muddy race, my first Half Marathon and hands down the funnest race ever!

Jim Aiello (via Facebook):

…thanks for putting on such a great event. It’s been so much fun watching how this race has grown from a local event to one of the class races in the area. I hope you made some funds for trail maintenance because we certainly chewed them up today. Great fun, let’s do it again next October.

TowerPower31 (via

This race is a gem. The race has grown in popularity each year, but with the growth the race has kept its small, local feel. The trail itself is great. A nice balance between single and wider track w/ some technical features (roots, small rocks, catwalks, etc) but not overly punishing. The organization of the race is very well done. You can tell it’s managed by runners for runners. Post-race has great food and amenities to start a solid recovery. And lastly, the race volunteers were terrific. Helpful, encouraging, and abundant. Would not surprise me if this race gets to 1K runners in a few years.

Israel Good (via Facebook):

the Paine to Pain is a Baddd Boy. I loved it

Beth and Carl (via

Amazing event! Most of the trail was muddy conditions due to all the recent rain but made it that much more of a challenge. And challenge it was! Highly recommend the trail half marathon. This was my 1st trail run. I’ m hooked! Many fine people obviously put a lot of time and effort into making the run an awesome experience. Can’t wait to do it again next year!

Jack Serra-Lima (via email):

I ran the Paine to Pain race today and have to say everybody did a really fantastic job and created an incredible event.  I don’t know who was in charge of the weather but that person needs to be congratulated as well.

Thanks for everything and I’ll see you there again next year.

Larry Hrbek (blog comment)

Great race!!! Perfect weather, great volunteers, fantastic course and lots of chances to get dirty….a perfect trail race. I had a super time in this my first Paine to Pain and you can count on me to be back with friends next year. This is everything an honest to god trail race should be. Thank you all.

Scott Sherman (via Facebook):

I echo all the thank yous. The race just gets better and better each year (although this was certainly the muddiest). To Eric and all the other people it takes to makes this happen, you are wonderful.

Kai McBride (via Facebook):

Thank you for putting on such a fantastic race. It was well organized, beautiful and clearly marked. The run was well supported with volunteers and it was great seeing the aid stations. Runners were very polite and I don’t think I was the only one who did a face plant! Muddy? Oh yeah. I’ll be back next year.

Penny (via blog comment)

It was awesome & super muddy this year. Thank you to everyone — volunteers, sponsors, and runners.

Wleexx (via

Great trail race. The rain the night before made the race even more fun. Excellent post race food.

Lee Ann Zarger (via Facebook):

Awesome race. My second but surely not my last.

Peter Carpenter (via blog comment):

Awesome race. Extremely well organized. Everyone involved (staff, volunteers, sponsors) was fantastic. I just want to thank all those who helped create a truly great experience. I will be back next year!

YiShun Lai (via Facebook):

what a great race. second year for me, and just as good. volunteers were incredible, and we continue to be impressed with the amount of trail maintenance you guys do. thank you! hope we can help put some muscle into helping you with maintaining the trail before next year’s race!

Stacey Smith (via Facebook):

Thank you for organizing an amazing run! I am keeping the Cheerleader chants going in my head – “you can do it”; yea ” you can do it”; L.E. T. S. G.O, Let’s Go!. Great fun; great organizers; great volunteers; great friends! See you again.

Christine Dwyer (via email):

This race was AWESOME!  First time for my ½ marathon and very proud, lots of fun & definitely do it again next year – thank you for a fine job!

The Gigante (via

Great race – tough, very muddy and wet this year (2011). Pace yourself in the beginning with the hills and rocks and you will be fine on the back half (if you like mud that is) Be prepared to need new shoes after!

Kevin Barrett (via email):

That’s a GREAT race you’ve put together.  My friend and I ran it together as part of our training for a marathon later in the Fall.  I was particularly curious about a Westchester trail race of that length.  Three quarters of the way through, we’d had so much fun that we decided we’d run it again next year.  I was particularly impressed with the extent and organization of volunteers throughout the course.  Well done.

I will add to this list to the extent any additional comments (that we like) come rolling in…

See also, 2010  reviews and 2009 reviews.

5 thoughts on “And the 2011 Reviews Come Rolling In”

  1. Great race, well marked and organized, with plentiful volunteers.

    However, my time wasn’t recorded. This is unacceptable for such a serious race. I ran right over the timing strip at the beginning (along with about 15 ppl within 1 second). If the equipment can’t handle that many people at once then they should stagger the start times more. I was by myself at the finish like with my tag fully visible so I know the problem wasn’t at the finish.

  2. However, my time wasn’t recorded.

    There were a couple like that and we have requested finish line photos. Results are preliminary while we go through them to work out discrepencies.

  3. So what is considered to be “perfect weather” here. For me, perfect running weather is 75 F, sunny, with a light breeze. For others, it’s in the 40s.
    The course didn’t sound so good for running with all that mud.

  4. Yikes! 75 degrees!? I’ll take temps in the upper 40s low 50s every time.

    As to the mud, well, it’s a trail race. You take what nature gives you. Or you stay home.

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