P2P “Preview” – 2020

NewRo Runners, the group that organizes the Paine to Pain Trail Half Marathon, will host a “preview” run of the course on October 4th at 9 am. Please arrive 10-15 minutes early so that we can start promptly.

While there is no race this year due to the pandemic for the reasons I discussed over the summer, that doesn’t mean we can’t do a fun run. (But we don’t start at the P2P start line — read this whole message!)

We usually get 50-75 people doing this and I usually have about 10 trail leaders since there are no flags on the course.  If you know the course and can lead, please email me privately.

Rules for 2020!!!

Bring a mask!!!  First, you will need it for the start area when people congregate.

Second, while many will lower it while running, I fully expect everyone to pull it up when passing civilians (or each other) out on the trail. The trails are narrow, and we are breathing hard, and forcing others to breathe our air is not just potentially dangerous, but rude.

Distancing between groups of runners will happen naturally as the speedier runners take flight. Within your group, please don’t run in each other’s slip streams. Leaders will pause at major junctions so others in their groups can catch up. This is a guided running tour, not a race.

We will have multiple groups – which we coyly designate as fast, medium and slow, because tall, grande and venti didn’t seem right.  The groupings will generally (and very loosely) be:

  • Fastest – Was training for 3:30 marathon or faster (or 1:40 ½-marathon)
  • Medium – Was training for 3:30 – 4:15 marathon (or 1:40 – 2:10  ½-marathon)
  • Slower – Was training for 4:15-5:00 hour marathon (All runners should be capable of running a 2:30 half marathon on the street – please, no walkers.)

There are no fees, no services, and you don’t have to be a member of NewRo Runners to join us. We do this once a year as one of our always-changing weekly  group runs and invite others to join us so we can show you our playground.

Just send me an email, tweet (@PaineToPain), Instagram (@PaineToPain) or mention on our Facebook page, so that I have a sense of how big our crowd will be, and let me know which group you think you might run with. You can always change groups on the spot, or mid-run if you don’t like the itsy-bitsy, tiger-striped shorts of the guy in front of you.

Important!!  We do not meet at the starting line for P2P! We start, instead, at the trailhead for the Leatherstocking Trail. This is at the corner of Pinebrook Boulevard and Hillside Crescent in New Rochelle. (See map) There is parking available on Hillside Crescent.

There is one water fountain along the way, inside the Saxon Woods Golf Club, which has bathrooms as well, and is at the 6.8-ish-mile mark.

Your options are:

  • 5.6 miles — Out and back on the Leatherstocking trail, which is marked. (Also some of the more challenging terrain of the race.)
  • 10 miles — Stay with the group until we head down the Hutchinson River Trail (after passing the golf course) and then bail out at Pinebrook Boulevard.  This is the same street we started on, but two miles to the north. Then run two miles on Pinebrook (going left) back to the start. There are no turns to make after leaving the group.
  • 13+  —The full monty. As an extra bonus, instead of running the Broadview hill at the start of the race, you get to run it at the end when you are tired.

Please let me know if you will be able to join us.

P2P 2020 – Canceled

I’ve been trying since March to create a Paine to Pain race plan. But three problems keep slamming me upside the head:

    1. Hundreds of runners (if they show up) running single track in each other’s slipstreams, not for a few seconds but for minutes at a time. And I can’t stretch the start out over a couple of hours because I need to deal with road closures.
    2. The #PortaPottyProblem — hundreds of runners dashing into those stifling little boxes in the 20 minutes before gunshot. Do you want to breathe that air?
    3. And no matter what I plan, the whole thing could go kablooie the week before the race due to a rising infection rate, leaving us stuck with a lot of your money already spent.

So I’m finally throwing in the towel.

For the 380 people who registered at the stupid-cheap $35 price right after last year’s race we offer three options since we haven’t spent any money yet:

    • Refund
    • Deferral until 2021 (likely date, October 10)
    • Donate the $35

I’ll try not to guilt you into the donation, but will mention that NewRo Runners is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, and this past few months we donated $10,000 to help feed front line workers (and raised an additional $25,000) and spent thousands more creating 3,000 masks for free distribution to the community.

I’m just sayin’.

Choose one of the three options by going to your profile on RunSignUp and selecting Paine to Pain from your list of upcoming events, then clicking on manage registration.

A couple folks asked about a virtual Paine to Pain, but I confess that such spirit doesn’t move me.  Half the fun is the camaraderie of the shared experience before, during and after the race. As to the other half of the experience, the actual race, well the course is entirely open (with the potential exception of the finish line on the track) so you really don’t need me to run it. Try not to get lost. Fife and drum music optional on your e-device.

If we get really lucky and the virus magically vanishes — which I do not expect since I’m not a magical-thinking kinda guy — I might try to organize some kind of event on the trails.  If I do, it will (necessarily) be a last minute decision, and one I would make only in conformity with the CDC and within Westchester County health guidelines.

In the meantime, please stay safe. And don’t be one of those chuckleheads who think you can wear a mask below the nose. It’s like wearing a condom on your balls.

Eric Turkewitz, Race Director
Paine to Pain Trail 1/2 Marathon
Twitter: @PaineToPain
Instagram: @PaineToPain
Facebook: Paine To Pain
(Notice a social media pattern?)

Real job:
The Turkewitz Law Firm
228 East 45th Street – 17th Floor
New York, NY  10017

NewRo Runners Covid-19 Fundraiser


Erik Reitinger, of Orchard Street Runners, crushing a 13.1 in 1:12:25 (!) on March 26th while wearing a face mask and, uhh, crop top. Reitinger finished 3rd at P2P in 2017 and 4th in 2019. Photo by Joe DiNoto.

I wish I knew when this awful movie was going to end. But I don’t.  And I don’t like being in it every day. Nobody does.

Our start and finish lines were both within the original one mile Containment Zone established here in New Rochelle back on March 10th — a lifetime ago measured in COVID-years. 

I write to you with two bits of news: One is small, one is big.

The small one:  Paine to Pain registration usually opens on Earth Day, April 22nd.  It won’t this year. I have no idea what the fall will bring.

You are likely not surprised.  We will reevaluate in a month. In the big scheme of life, this is small news. 

The bigger news: P2P has raised money over the years. In 2018 I realized that the trails were, frankly, in radically different condition than when we started. Which is to say they were great.

And that left us with $$$ to put toward local charitable purposes other than the trails. 

We now have our first charitable endeavor:  For many years we’ve had Montefiore / New Rochelle help us at our finish line. 

 And now we get to help them back. NewRo Runners, my running club that puts on this race, will buy food from local restaurants to supply overworked healthcare workers at Montefiore. 

We also hope to donate to other southern Westchester hospitals and first responders. It depends on how much we can raise.

We have set up a Donate button on our race registration page here:  Donate.  (Since NewRo Runners is a non-profit 501(c)(3) you’ll get a donation receipt for the tax man.)

In one shot, we help both the healthcare workers on the front lines and hard hit local businesses.

And for every dollar you donate, we will match it 1-for-1 up to a total of $5,000 $10,000. If you can give, please do. 

They have volunteered for us. Now it’s our turn to volunteer for them. Please donate.

— Eric Turkewitz, Race Director


It’s “Eric Turkewitz Day”

I posted this bit on my law blog, and republish it here. While superficially it looks like pure self-aggrandizement, it’s really just another excise for me to thank our volunteers without whom the race would not be possible and to encourage others to volunteer. Somewhere. Anywhere.

There are three kinds of people in the world: Those that get things done, those that watch things get done and those that wonder how things got done.

Last night in New Rochelle I was honored by Meals on Wheels at their annual gala for getting something done. Not for its organization, dedicated to getting meals into the homes of those that can’t get out, but for community service in putting together a half marathon trail race that has averaged 700 people a year over the last several years. We get registrants from 15-20 states each year, and net proceeds go to the trails and parks.

We get good reviews.

But writing about myself isn’t exactly my comfort zone, as regular readers know. You noticed that the prior paragraph says “We?”

I write today with a broader message. About volunteering.

Stick with me here, because this time I hope to have a point.

The room last night at the gala was stuffed full of volunteers, people who are doing things for their community. People who get things done. For many of them the volunteer work they do is completely divorced from their occupations.

When I put on the race, we turn out about 200 volunteers on race day, handling a wide variety of race logistics needed to put on an event that rambles a giant loop through multiple jurisdictions. I chose a photo for this post that included a few of those volunteers for a damn good reason.

When Meals on Wheels does it, it isn’t a one day affair after a few months of planning, but a month-in and month-out commitment to give something back to the community.

Volunteering is like that, giving people a chance to step out side the box they have placed themselves into and get another perspective on the world while helping others.

Professionals in particular, I think, need to do that as many of us become so consumed with the profession — be it law, medicine or any other — that it myopia becomes easy. We become known for doing x, and as a result become ever more specialized in life regarding that x. But in doing so many of us unwittingly lose sight not only of the big picture, but all other pictures.

So get out, step up, and do something different, even for just a few hours a week. Being the person that gets something done is rewarding not only to those that benefit your actions, but for yourself as well. It’s good for the soul.

OK, short preach/pitch over.

Now about that headline calling saying that today is “Eric Turkewitz Day.” Well, it is in New Rochelle. By proclamation of New Rochelle’s mayor.

And October 28th will be “Eric Turkewitz Day” again, this time by proclamation of the Westchester County Board of Legislators. And I have the documents to prove it.

One fun little note about the documents — and this includes citations and proclamations from statewide legislators — is that much of the information comes from the little bio that I wrote for the official gala program.

But I had no idea that, when I mentioned my dog Tucker McDoofusPants in that bio, it would end out in many of those official proclamations.

The Mayor said, “So let it be written.” And it was.

Earth Day Update!

So here we are, on Earth Day. The day we always open registration!  Woo hoo!

Except, of course, that we aren’t. Because that would be stupid. I’d insert an emoji with a tear rolling down onto a facemask if I had it.

But not all the news sucks. Because so far, with your donations, we have provided over 2,000 meals to front line workers and others in need. Read on, my friends.

Last week we put up $5,000 in matching funds to buy food from local restaurants to deliver to front line workers. And we got $15,000 in donations. Wow.

Yes, we delivered doughnuts to the police! Thank you Mikey Dubs!

You guys blew our doors off with that response.

So we’re doing it again! NewRo Runners and Paine to Pain are putting up another $5,000, hoping for at least $10,000 more in donations. That means a total of 25K from you and 10K from us. [Donate here]

We received donations from about 200 people and groups. But this email is going out to about 5,000. Maybe (if you haven’t been furloughed) you can spare one race fee for the effort to help those that have helped us?

North End Tavern Delivers to Montefiore

We’ve also set it up so that you can form your own group to make donations, regardless of what type of group you are. [Form group here.]

So far we have spent about $12,000 on those meals.  Food/money has so far been delivered to:

  • Montefiore New Rochelle Hospital (provides P2P finish line medical)
  • Empress EMS (provides aid station medical)
  • New Rochelle Police Department (provides traffic protection for P2P start/finish)
  • Hope Community Services (our local food kitchen, because their client base tripled from March to April)

Participating restaurants  (some of whom have previously donated to us as P2P sponsors) include:

Food from long-time P2P sponsor AJ’s Burgers!!!

The running club is, by the way, a non-profit 501(c)(3) and you get a receipt for the tax man.

Want to know what else we’re trying? We’re looking to buy a couple thousand masks. No, not to sell. To give away. For free. Just like all the food we give away at the P2P finish line. Because that’s the way we roll run. So we may donate even more moneyfor that project.

If we can pull this off, the masks would be the non-medical type since those are needed elsewhere.

At this moment, can you think of a better way to serve a local community?

You can donate here: Donate here.

And special thanks to Sean Mosher-Smith (P2P veteran) of Echo Design Lab for creating the fundraising logo on short notice!

Eric Turkewitz,
Race Director, Paine to Pain

Thank You Volunteers!!!

I’ve said it before an I’ll say it again: This race doesn’t happen without volunteers. In fact, no community event happens without volunteers — people willing to wake up and do things simply for the benefit of others.

You guys are it.

When I did my race recap, I extolled the wonder of it all, with all of the moving parts that putting on an event entails. Sometimes, people just did things without me asking or knowing. Intersections got covered, medical people appeared out of thin air to pitch in when needed, signs got moved to appropriate spots, and a million other things while my head spun off its mooring on Sunday morning as I tried to focus on the start and finish.

After handing off materials to the registration table I didn’t even have to look back, unless it was to say hello to a runner.

I did my best to meet and greet so that runners would have a great time, and you guys did all the hard work while I stood up there and got the acclaim.

And the runners came back with spectacular reviews, from veterans and newbies alike.

But it doesn’t happen without you.  Yes, I said that before. Yes, I’ll say it again.

Anyone can come up with plans. But it’s the execution of those plans that takes work. And you executed.

Let’s look at my annual review of the various “jobs” that we had to take care of, shall we? While my recap of the race has the look and feel of the runner’s perspective, this is what “backstage” of Paine to Pain looks like:

Updating web site

Designing shirt

Distributing shirts

Designing medal

Distributing medals

Planting/removing signs

Online registration

In person registration

Banner/sign design and purchases

Setting up start/finish line banners

Ordering tents, tables and chairs (start and finish)

Placing tents and tables

Shopping for start/finish line goods

Manning intersections

Organizing close to 200 volunteers

Data analysis to determine in August how many will show in October

Creating and manipulating spread sheets

Creating income statement

Writing checks and tracking invoices/payments

Finding restaurants to donate food

Getting that food to the finish

Ordering water/additional food/utensils/cups/plates for finish

Feeding people / staffing food stations

Manning three aid stations (and arranging for water for them)

Medical coverage for three aid stations and finish line

Finding and coordinating sponsors

Firing muskets and establishing colonial theme

Establishing massage stations

Securing and transporting baggage

Maintaining email list and sending out mass emails

Laying out, and then sweeping,  ~800 flags

Supervising cheerleaders

Announcing arriving runners to the finish

Finding/providing music for start, finish and on the course

Obtaining permits

Obtaining insurance for every municipality and sponsor

Coordinating four police departments

Coordinating parking

Race day communications via ham radio

Finalizing results and fixing scoring errors

You accomplished an astounding feet. Each year I dump some project on someone — often a person with a full time job — and that person just gets the job done, consuming, usually, several hours of time.

All of your effort shows. Year after year the glowing reviews come in that you guys nailed the execution of the race, and this year has exceeded the stellar reviews of the prior ones. I’m not sure how you top A+, but you managed. It is the volunteers that turn a mere footrace into a piece of performance art.

Over and again people came up to me to talk about the enthusiasm of the volunteers. At the start, on the course and at the finish.

We had runners registered from 19 states and two other countries.  We often now find runners flying in to see family/friends on this particular weekend so that they can run our race. It’s what a community event is all about.

It. Doesn’t. Happen. Without. You. There. I said it again.





Stupid-Cheap Registration Opens! (Briefly!)

Murray Rosenblith celebrating the news that Stupid-Cheap has returned!!

Woo hoo!  You know what this email’s about, right?!
After a great P2P2019 (Recap here! Reviews here! Results here):

Registration has just opened for Paine to Pain 2020, with a tentative date of October 4th!

And we are once again doing it for the Stupid-Cheap ™ © ® ℗  price of $35! Yes, you read that right:

THIRTY-FIVE FRIGGEN DOLLARS!  (Yes, that’s $35!!!)

Why sell entries for $35 when it costs us $40-45 / runner to put the race on?
Two reasons:

1.         Those that register a full year in advance do so because they love the race, and that means they’ll tell their friends about it. We’re not shy about this: Word of mouth is our best marketing!!  (Have I mentioned the reviews? Yes, and I’ll do it again!)

2.         We know that the best laid plans of mice and runners often run astray, sometimes over twisting, turning trails, and that many of you won’t be able to make it.  But you want to! You really, really want to! And you’ll try!  It’s like legalized gambling! (And having goals is a huge motivation.)

This all comes with two big, fat, hairy caveats, of course:

1.      It assumes we get our permits from the various municipalities for that date; and

2.      There is, as always, a no-refund, no-exchange, no deferral policy. If folks violate our honor code and give unused bibs to friends at the last minute, there’s no reason for us to continue the program. Basically, the no-show rate is baked into our pricing and the race would lose money if we allowed it. And there would be less to devote to the trails and charities, and we’d have to raise our prices (and hire someone to track transfers. Blech.).

So. You get Stupid-Cheap in exchange for a bigger risk of no-show due to weddings, births, injuries or conflict with your not yet planned college reunion with your old bestest friends who you’ve lost contact with and just found you on Facebook and they don’t run and think this trail running thing of yours is completely nuts because you might face plant on a rock and go to the hospital and they don’t run and don’t want any part of that so why don’t you come to the reunion in Vegas with us and get drunk?

Yes! I know that was a run-on sentence!!! I’m not a schmuck!!! Just excited!!! Can’t you see all the exclamation marks!!!

Registration is open for just three days! Did you get that? (Closing Saturday at 11:59 p.m.)

Just. Three. Days.

Register Here

Every year the rush to register is like the Running  of the Brides at a bridal gown sale! (And you thought trail running was risky?)

But if you blow this Stupid-Cheap early registration we will re-open on April 22nd, Earth Day, at our usual early-bird rate of $50. Still cheap! But not Stupid-Cheap! Stupid-Cheap is a 30% discount off regular cheap!

Once again, the registration link is here. Tell your family! Tell your friends! Tell your…oh hell, I gotta get back to lawyer-work…..

And we once again thank our wonderful sponsors from this past year’s ridiculously successful race:

▪     Westchester Road Runner
▪     Montefiore New Rochelle
▪     Empress EMS
▪     NewRo Runners
▪     The Turkewitz Law Firm (NYC)
▪     Hi-Touch Executive Search
▪     Breaking the Tape Productions, LLC
▪     PennyWise Consulting
▪     Salomon

▪     Echo Designlab
▪     Pepsi
▪     Total Form Fitness

▪     Athletic Brewing Company
▪     DeCicco Family Markets
▪     Premier Sports Recovery
▪     StretchLab (Scarsdale)
▪     Ultima Replenisher
▪     Westchester Emergency Communications Association

Supporting Sponsors:
▪     AJ’s Burgers
▪     Beechmont Tavern
▪     Mikey Dubb’s Frozen Custard
▪     Orangetheory Fitness (Mamaroneck)
▪     Smoke & Spice NY Grill
▪     Texas Roadhouse

In cooperation with:
▪     City of New Rochelle
▪     Town of Mamaroneck
▪     Village of Scarsdale
▪     Westchester County Parks

Eric Turkewitz, Race Director
Real job: Attorney, The Turkewitz Law Firm

The Photos are Awesome!

Drew Bly (10th overall)

The photos this year came out particularly good. A lot of real sharp, crisp shots.

You search by bib number.

But. The photos are indexed using a computer code on the front of the bib. If that code wasn’t clearly seen by the camera, because you wore your bib on your leg for instance, you may have to hunt down the pics manually. (They are sequenced based on time and location making it relatively easy.)

All photos are at this site.

2019 Race Director’s Recap and Prize!

Four course record breakers, Left to right: Corey Levin (2nd), Will McDonough (3rd), Patrick Dooley (1st) and Erik Reitinger (4th). Ain’t too many photos like that.

Holy smoke! And by that I mean, those guys were smoking!

The old course record of 1:21:27 was crushed not once, not twice, not three times, but four times. And almost five. Really, that just doesn’t happen. But it did.

Patrick Dooley of Stamford, CT roared out of the woods and tore down the home stretch to finish in 1:17:54, chopping an astonishing 3.5 minutes off the four-year-old course record. That’s a 5:57/mile pace!!!

And he was followed to the tape by Corey Levin of the Bronx in 1:18:44 and two-time Leatherman’s Loop champ Will McDonough of New Canaan, CT in 1:19:18.

Erik Reitinger of Brooklyn, took fourth, despite beating the course record by 90 seconds and fifth went to Toby Zitsman of Brooklyn, who missed the course record by only three seconds. And still came in fifth!

And on this beautiful autumn morning with temperatures in the mid-50s at the start, an exuberant Joelle Reeves of Brooklyn raced around our rocky, rooty, leaf-covered loop to take the women’s crown in 1:29:12. And you know what? Last year she broke the course record but still came in second! She also becomes the second woman to crack the 1:30 barrier.

Following her to the finish was 2017 champion Kelsey Luoma of Brooklyn in 1:31:39. Lindsey Felling of Larchmont, last year’s overall Trail Mix Series champ, took the third podium spot in 1:36 (if we had an actual podium).

In addition to the engraved copper tankards 1-2-3 each received, Solomon is providing each of our number ones with a free pair of trail shoes. The number twos get hydration vests and the number threes get hoodies.

And, as always since the birth of this race in 2008, our two champions come back as my guest for as long as I remain Race Director.

While rain and mud always makes for fun running through the woods, my rain dance didn’t work this year, and we were stuck with low humidity and a delightful finish line festival with great music and too much food. My apologies.

Some of that great food was supplied by repeat supporters AJ’s Burgers, Texas Roadhouse and DeCiccos, and more by newcomers Beechmont Tavern, Smoke and Spice and Mikey Dubbs.  We had Pepsi for the water, Athletic Brewing Co. for the beer and Ultima for the sports drink. And our new car sponsor, Rye Subaru — could there be any more perfect fit for trail runners than Subaru? — came with the cookies (!) in addition to leading waves up Broadview in their pace cars.

We are also grateful for those finish line stretches and massages by Total Form Fitness (Hartsdale), Premier Physical Therapy (Pelham) and Stretch Lab (Scarsdale). And we welcome Orange Theory (Mamaroneck) — which took over Water Stop #1 and made it their own –to the P2P fold!

Hey! When you want to put on a top-notch event at a dirt-cheap price it takes sponsors like that to help along. Without them the race would cost more and you would get less. And that would suck, as I like to say in legalese.

One of our sponsors has been with us for all 12 years: Westchester Road Runner in White Plains. How cool is that? I’ve lived in Westchester for 20 years now and have bought every pair of running shoes from them during that time. OK, except for the pair that I lost while I was on vacation and I needed another pair now, though I think they will forgive me for that.

But this race doesn’t just need sponsors, it also needs volunteers. Lots and lots of volunteers.

As runners may not realize, this race was helped along by about 200 of them, taking care of registration, food, website, music, banking, sponsors, water stations, more food, insurance, police coordination, start and finish line set up, baggage, parking, more food, cheerleaders, aid stations, banners and signage, shirts and medal design, rental trucks, communications,  start line coordination, finish line coordination, tents, tables, intersections, medical (thank you Empress!), laying out over 500 hot pink flags and collecting them later, etc. Many of our volunteers ran the race also, and were seen sporting the low numbered bibs.

If you run races and haven’t had a chance to see them from “the other side” I urge you to do so as a volunteer. But don’t do it just to gain entrance to a mega-race, but rather, as an end in itself. Do it simply because these races (and so many other organizations that rely on volunteers) will not happen without them. Yet such events (and charities) are what helps to define a community.

Now before I get to the Race Director’s Prize, which is awarded in my absolute and unrestricted discretion as Grand Poobah, I want to mention something about those shirts and medals.

You’ve seen the design of a dozen little running guys hatching in an egg carton since this was our 12th year.  But I wasn’t just being cute.  The race celebrates our nation’s birth since it starts on Thomas Paine’s farm. And a hatching egg represents birth.

It was the essence of an eaglet being hatched that formed the logo for the musical comedy 1776. (It even had a song, “The Egg,” if you care.) I took that logo and ran with it, so to speak, reimagining and transforming it with a carton of 12 running colonial runners.

OK, enough with the symbolism and the fact that sometimes I see the race as performance art. (Surprise!)

Who gets the Race Director’s Prize? How will I use my vast dictatorial powers this year? And will they be used for good or evil? And will I make the award with a maniacal laugh?

It was tempting, I admit, to give the award to Tim “Double” Decker from the NY Flyers, running the race for the 11th consecutive time. He just had one small problem, and that was a conflict with the Staten Island Half being run the same day. He managed this problem once before by simply running the Staten Island Half and then coming to New Rochelle and running P2P starting at noon. This time he did it in reverse, running P2P with a headlamp and some deer for company, starting at 2:15 a.m. while I was staring at the ceiling trying to remember what race details I forgot. Tim made it to Staten Island in time to run a 1:36 to complete his double.

Sorry, Tim. But impressive as that was, not this year.

As many of you know, a runner went down hard in Saxon Woods just before the halfway mark. A bicyclist, who shouldn’t have been in the park, cut him off.  He very much needed medical attention

Two runners stopped and stayed with our fallen athlete, both sacrificing their own race to help another. Robert Gianotti, running P2P for the 4th time, and John Abrams running it for the 5th, were there to help. John, in fact, never made it back into the race.

And so this year’s winners are a twofer. They each come back next year as my guests, as if they are champions. Because in my book they are. So let it be written.
We had tons of great photos this year.
Results are here.
Race Reviews are here. I’ll add more as I find them!

Eric Turkewitz
Race Director

Real job: Attorney, The Turkewitz Law Firm

2019 Race Reviews!!!

OK, this is the part where I collect all the nice things people say about the race and preserve them in one place before they vanish into the Everest sized mountains of internet pixels that flood the intertubes every day, never to be found again unless we run for public office. (If you want results, go here, and photos, go here.)

One of the best parts about this are that comments come in from both deeply experienced front runners and rookies alike.

(Comments that came in via email were reproduced with permission.)
Running doesn’t have to be brand-sponsored, mass-produced, or boring. @painetopain has been keeping running fun, unique, and competitive for years without podcasts, influencers, or needing a 5k PR/Running Crew to even get in. I was lucky today to break the course record for this tough trail half marathon by over 90 seconds and STILL only finish 4th in a deep field of athletes. I’ll take this any day over the nonsense that’s marketed on the internet. Thanks @painetopain for the opportunity!  (Erik Reitenger, Orchard Street Runners)

Thanks for a great race this morning, as always it was the most enjoyable race in NY State. I run many races, you guys put the best one together. Great work from the organization, again!  (Philip, via email)

Race was a blast.  Most fun I’ve ever had in a half-marathon. (Patrick Dooley, 2019 Men’s Champion, via email)

Amazing race today! The course was in perfect condition, wonderful volunteers, and finish line area was great. I loved every minute of it. (@AnthonyRun21 on Instagram)

Dan Tower, 10x P2P finisher

The 2019 addition of the @painetopain trail half marathon is in the books. Always an amazing day. Beautiful day to run. Looking forward to my 11th running in 2020  (Dan Tower, 10x finisher, via Instagram)

I’m a first time Paine to Pain runner (I’ll be back next year).  This was an all around terrific event.  Your team hit it on all cylinders (pre-race info, logistics, beautiful, challenging course.  Great post race venue and refreshments.  Lots of volunteers in strategic places.  Very cool (and innovative) medal.  Really outstanding job!  (Keith Drayer via email)

 Many thanks to you and all the people who make P2P such a great race!  I really enjoyed the warmup lap and the race itself – another great year (Sam Wertheimer, who ran a two laps of the course, via email)

What a great event Eric and his crew of volunteers put on yesterday at @painetopain in New Rochelle, NY. Conditions could not have been better and the corps of volunteers was simply amazing. So much positivity and encouragement. I couldn’t help but smile the whole time…AND the competition was fierce with four men under the course record of 1:21:28 (and a fifth missing by just :02). Loved sharing some miles with my former college rival, Corey Levin, and proud to come away with 3rd in 1:19:19. 📸: (who took these great photos?) @trailmixseries #trailrunning  (Will McDonough, 2x champ of the Leatheman’s Loop)

What do you do when, after paying the stupid cheap rate a year ahead, you find out your 50th high school reunion is taking place in Philadelphia (it could be worse) the night before this year’s Paine to Pain?! Of course you want to go to the reunion and see how everyone has weathered the years. Maybe even gloat a little about how good you’re doing, especially if you’re still a crazy runner pushing into your late 60s. And, of course, you don’t want to miss the race, which has become one of the highlights of your running year. Especially when the weather will finally deliver a day for a pleasant jaunt through the woods instead of the sweatfests of the last few years.

So, you party with your 1969 classmates and then hit the road at 5 am on Sunday morning, swing through Brooklyn to pick up some teammates (PPTC rocks Paine to Pain), make it to New Rochelle and slog your way through it all. It doesn’t matter that it was the slowest race so far. All the volunteers, people at the water stops, local police guarding the road crossings and intersections, other runners, were cheering us on. The trails were dry and dappled in their unique beauty. The cool northern air even dampened some of the fragrance of those bridge underpasses (and I don’t think it’s because of bears you-know-whatting-in the woods). I just thought of it as “forest bathing” (it’s a thing) at a 12-14 minute pace. In fact, my slowness this year just meant more time to enjoy the experience…even the parts that sucked at the moment. 

So thanks again to you all for one of the great runs of the year. I’m ready to pull the trigger on the stupid cheap rate for 2020 and do my best to keep the rest of my calendar clear for that weekend. (Murray Rosenblith, Pied Piper of the Prospect Park Track Club)

Your race is the highlight of my fall race schedule.  The weather was perfect.  The course was, as always, a blast!  Thank you for all your hard work and dedication to the parks in Westchester and as race director. Looking forward to next year and to early sign-up for the cheap rate.    Best deal in town.  (Mark Wellman via email)

Thank you for another eggselent race. (@RunWorkRepeat on Instagram)

Once again the Paine to pain experience was spectacular! Thanks so much Eric Turkewitz and NewRo Runners for making my day special. See you next year. (Michael Wolf via Facebook)

My biannual visit to New Rochelle for this race is always special. From the 200-year-old musket firing to start each wave to the immediate hill you climb to get to the trailhead to the constantly changing terrain. Five beautiful parks await you as you slice away mile after mile. Outside of those delightful challenges (yep, the full shebang: tree roots, branches, leaves, grass, little mud, a couple of stream crossings, wooden catwalks and tons of stones), this was a great day for running. …Kudos to race director, Eric Turkewitz for another successful race. Great to see you again, as always. (@WilWorksDC via Instagram)

The #painetopain trail half marathon is the most fun race of the year on the east coast. @painetopain thank you once again. (Alkis Valentin, founding member of the #FinishLinePhotoHallOfFame, via Instagaram)

Thank you to Eric Turkewitz, NewRo Runners, and all the volunteers and sponsors and vendors for a race organized with excellence, a sense of humor, and post-game food that included diabetic-friendly options. It was my first trail half, and will not be my last, despite falling flat on my face about midway. (Rachel Wolfe via Facebook)

Today I completed half marathon #2. The Paine to Pain trail run and let me tell you. It was painful. It was so incredibly hard and when I was running/walking up the big hills during the first 6 miles, one thought came to my mind. “This freakin sucks….. but I love every minute of it”. In case anyone’s wondering, yes the medal is an egg carton with patriots in the egg shells.(Apijar258 via Instagram)

I just ran my first Paine to Pain half this weekend (which I learned about from Instagram!), and wanted to thank you for putting on such a fun and well-organized race. The energy at the start, the fun and interesting course, and the excellent volunteers all made for great experience. I haven’t had that much fun at a race in awhile, and I know so much work goes into an event like that. So thank you so much! I’m bringing friends next year! (Emily Bunce, via email)

Thanks for a great race. Definitely coming back next year. (@jbasa713 via Instagram)

Beautiful day for some trails. Thank you to @painetopain & @newrorunners for organizing one of my favorite local trail races. Highly recommend Paine to Pain for anyone new to trail running or looking for a fast time – it’s a very runable course with a spectacular finish party. (Sarah Stafford, via Instagram)

Paine to Pain trail half. Avenging a bad race with my trail companion @griggs_on_the_run.  There were ups, downs, rocks, trees, logs, and even a small water crossing or 2. As an added bonus, I got to learn half a dozen ways to fold a buff from the race director himself @painetopain. Everything that a trail runner could ask for in his first trail half! (Monk_Runs_the_Woods via Instagram)


I came from Connecticut for this race. What a fun well-run (pun intended) event with a great vibe! Thanks so much to the the volunteers, especially the sweeper (whose name I can’t recall) and her super-dog Scout. Your encouragement really kept us going! (Elizabeth Geib via Facebook)

Lucille Renwick, P2P veteran and Sweeper Extraordinaire

I ran with Elizabeth [above] and agree our Champion Sweep and Scout were a highlight of the day. Would love to see a picture of them from the race. So many highlights – and the course marking was FANTASTIC. ‘Blocking’ the way not to go helped tremendously when tired! Girl Scouts were proactive with the water – another highlight – really can’t say enough good things. Love the race performance art. : )  (Fiona Russo, via Facebook)

Thank you for organizing the race preview 2 weekends before the race. It helped us greatly get used to the look and feel of our very first trail race. Thank you and Peter and all NewRo Runners volunteers for showing us the way.   
And thank you for organizing the race itself: it was as nice as we experienced it during the preview, as nice as some of our neighbors and runners bragged about it in the past years, and maybe a bit more: the weather could have not been better.
Thank you for your long, informational and very funny emails: they are the main reason Delia joined the race. Gene joined just because. (Gene and Delia via email)


Ok, the day was gorgeous and you guys did a bang up job as usual. May I kindly submit my “improvement requests” for next year:

  1. Make the weather bad. Do what you have to do. Get it done.
  2. Mix in some mud and dog poop along the way. Put it under the fallen leaves so we can’t see it. Mix it good so no matter how hard we try to get it off our shoes, it gets on our hands and in between our nails.
  3. Don’t invite back Douglas Palma. I’ve never met the guy and he is probably a stand up citizen. However, anyone that beats me by 1/100 of a second should not be invited back. Not cool, Doug. Not cool.

You guys ROCK!!! My hat goes off to you for a FANTASTIC DAY!!! (Todd Esposito, who once flew in from Ukraine for the race, but now only flies in from Vegas.)

Thank you for a fantastic race on Sunday. This was my second time running it and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Every road crossing was really well managed, the pink flags were well marked when I didn’t have someone to follow and the finish area worked great.  (Scott Rose, via email)