Race Reviews – 2018

Patrice Kenner, 2x Yonkers Marathon champ and 3x P2P age group winner.

Well, someone’s got to aggregate the reviews, and I sure as hell ain’t waiting for Runner’s World to do it.

The reviews for 2018 that I’ve found are below, mostly from Facebook and Instagram. If it came via email, rest assured I publish only with permission. I’ll put up more when (and if) they come in to me:

Lots of fun breaking the tape at the Paine to Pain Trail Half. Nothing like throwing it down on the hills and mud of the adopted hometown trails. Shoutout to Eric and all the volunteers for a truly unique, awesome event! (Tom Dilberto, Men’s Champion)

That is a beautiful set of trails, smartly connected, and tended with great support along the way. Thanks for a fun race. (Chris DeMuth, Jr., via Facebook)

This is not just the best trail race anywhere near NYC, but IMO the best race period. (If anyone knows any nearby race that gives you more bang for your buck, please tell me so I can go run it.) (Tim Decker, 10-time finisher, in post-race note to the NY Flyers via Facebook)

The race was incredibly well-run, super easy to get to from the city and the post-race festival was great – highly recommend! (@EatForEndurance, via Instagram)

It was a great race and the post finish food, service, etc was the best experience I ever had. Seriously. And I have been all over the world running races. Thank you so much for putting so much effort into this race. It’s indeed something very special. (Christian S., via email)

David Isaac

This was a great race, and all you volunteers were amazing!! (Meagan Reilly, via Facebook)

The girl scouts were great. Thanks to all who made this event happen. It was the community of big and small, from the uniformed to the ones banging on a cowbell, that make this event so special.

Something about P2P…being an away race but not too far away…the unique start, the enthusiasm on the course, and the post race party atmosphere…it keeps me coming back. (Heidi Chadwick, via Facebook on P2P and NY Flyers pages)

This was my first year running the Paine to Pain race. I enjoyed the race, everything from the musket rifles sounding the start, my name of the bid, the great course, really like the t-shirt design and the finish area music/ food. (Jeff Koren via email)

Highlights Include:

– Being used as a pole to catch someone’s fall

– Getting slapped in the face by a tree branch

– Seeing some happy doggos on the trail 🐕

– Running through streams and various piles of mud

– That majestic finish on the field

… today I learned that trail running is hella hard but fun. (@run_meghan_run, via Instagram)

Sometimes you need to do a race to remember why you like running so much. Paine to Pain was such race. Had so much fun running the trails of Westchester. Soul feels pretty charged. (@vikmanjj via Instagram)

I had a blast at the race yesterday!  As always you put on a first class production with all the bells  and whistles.  If only you could find a way to get 1/3 back of that sweat equity with costs and expenses off the top! Hope you are taking some time today to relax.

I am still working though some aches and pains that I don’t normally get when running around Brooklyn.  I only wish I had those kinds of trails and scenery near my apartment.  I was wearing your race day shirt all around Park Slope yesterday.  Got many complements.  Apparently your design is cool with the hipster crowd. (Mark Wellman, via email)

That was a beautiful race!! It’s not an easy trail but was so well kept, thanks in large part to the mission of this race and the New Rochelle Runners. Thank you Eric for inviting all of us to enjoy your trails. I’ll be back in the years to come and my fellow running friends should too. “Of all the roads you travel in life make some of them dirt.” (@RunEatWorkRepeat via Instagram)

Heather Baden

Awesome race! Great support and trails are really well maintained. (Sarah Scott Davis, via Facebook)

I got in on the stupid cheap pricing same time last year when I discovered I really enjoy running in the woods. It was such a great race this past weekend on those well-maintained trails (courtesy of this race’s fund raising mission and the New Rochelle Runners). The post race party with live music and hot food was unexpected but so lovely after giving all your effort getting to that finish line. Ok, after this, don’t tell anybody else about this gem of a race. I don’t want Eric to do away with the stupid-pricing or raise the prices (Andrew Tse, via Facebook NY Flyers page)

Thanks for staging a fantastic event! (@Swein via Instagram)

You guys did a fantastic job and I’m going to recommend this race to all my friends. (@thelifeofdona via Instagram)

You guys put on a great event again; thank you for the amazing effort. (David Isaac, via Instagram)

You put on a great race. (@ijcreations via Instagram)

Thanks again Eric Turkewitz for making Paine to Pain a fun and unique experience. It’s always challenging no matter what the conditions are. This year will be remembered for the mud and the humidity. I had an absolute blast! Keep up the good work. I will continue to spread the word about this truly great running event (Michael Wolf, via Facebook)

Thanks to Eric Turkewitz, the New Ro Runners and all the volunteers and organizers for another great Paine to Pain Half. The Prospect Park Track Club loves this race and we’ll be back next year! (Murray Rosenblith, via Facebook)

Excellent organization and super fun! The post-race party has tons of great food, etc.  (Danny Gallegos, via Facebook)

They call him “Finisher.”

Eric Turkewitz
Race Director

Real job:


Race Director’s Recap and Prize – 2018

Shelby Goose shatters the women’s course record by over three minutes.

Each year follows a familiar pattern: I plan and I scheme and I think: If I were running this race, how would I make it perfect? Not just good. Perfect. Then I beg, cajole, wheedle, sweet-talk and otherwise beg and grovel for volunteers as I try to bring the plans to fruition.

Hey, we all need a hobby.

But there’s magic involved too, and the magic comes home to me not when the shirts, medals, water bottles and other items arrive, or even when runners stream into Westchester Road Runner to pick up bibs.

No, the magic really hits me late Saturday afternoon before the race when I drive home from the store and see those hot pink flags lining the course. Flags. Laid down by our invisible trail pixies. It. Just. Seems. To. Happen.

The highlight of the race had to be the woman who followed those flags to shatter the course record on a warm and humid day by a full three minutes (and three seconds).

Thrilling those on the field lucky enough to witness it, Shelby Goose of Englewood, NJ, flew home in 1:28:35 to become the only woman ever to break the 1:30 barrier.

I had noted last year, when the race was run in similarly warm and uber-humid conditions, that no records were likely to be broken:

I tip my colonial tricorn hat to those that braved the trail on our Yankee Doodle Sunday. This was not a day for course records (nobody came close) or personal ones. It was a day simply to test your inner strength and bring it home to the finish. That was one hard-earned medal.

And yet there was Goose, roaring home across the field to blast through our over-sized winner’s “tape.” To put this in perspective, only three women in the past 10 years broke 1:35, and here she was going sub 1:29. Wowsa.

Joelle Reeves from the Prospect Park Track Club followed in 1:33:32 — making her the 4th woman to go sub-1:35 and a champion in most other years — with Lindsey Felling of Larchmont (1:39:59) taking the final podium spot (if we actually owned a podium).

Tom Diliberto emerges from the woods and races down onto the field toward the finish line and victory.

On the men’s side, Tom Diliberto of Pelham took top honors in his rookie running of the course with a 1:23:28. And the talent trying to chase him down was formidable. Brooklyn’s Steve Crnic followed him to the finish line, in 1:24:16. Crnic not only finished second last year, but in 2016 he set the existing course record. And Crnic, in turn, had defending champion Arnaud Enjalbert on his heels as he finished in 1:24:50.

And all those on the podium get some swag from Salomon:

1st place will get the new Sense Pro 3 running shoes

2nd place will receive the Agile 2 set (hydration vest)

3rd place male receives the Agile mid (half zip pull-over)

3rd place female receives the Agile LS hoodie.

And the champions will come back as my guest for as long as I remain race director.

As the runners streamed in, Reckless Jester struck up the tunes, with the food and drink — served up by a dedicated team of volunteers — coming from A.J.’s Burgers, Texas Roadhouse, North End Tavern, Hand Crafted Catering and Events, DeCiccos, and the Athletic Brewing Company (who answered the eternal question in the positive: yes, you can make non-alcoholic beer that actually tastes good).

You know how I often say that a race like this doesn’t happen without volunteers? Well, it also doesn’t happen without sponsors. Without them the race would cost twice as much and you’d never see that stupid-cheap option.

These sponsors give you a small clue as to what it takes to put on a race like this: In addition to the above, our thanks to Ultima for their sports drink that you had at the aid stations, to Symmetry Physical Therapy and Finish Line Physical Therapy for their finish line massages, to Pepsi for all that water, to Stop & Shop for their fruit and cookies, to Montefiore New Rochelle Hospital for the finish line medical tent, to Empress Ambulance for their EMTs at the aid stations, to Echo Design Lab for its help on those groovy tie dye shirts you’ll be wearing for a very long time, to the Westchester Emergency Communications Association, whose ham radio operators let us know who the leaders were and where we had runner break downs, and to PennyWise Consulting for the tech end of our website.

Whew. I was able to just scratch the surface of what it’s like to do this.

Now before turning to the Race Director’s Prize – awarded annually in my absolute discretion as Grand Poobah – you should know that registration for 2019 has opened, once again for a Stupid-Cheap© rate! Just $35 for all that you just experienced. It’s good until Saturday night at 11:59, and it comes (as always) with our no refund / no exchange policy. Signing up a year in advance? It’s legal gambling! And its one way we keep the costs of the race down.

As to the Race Director’s Prize, I have awarded it for turning a cartwheel down the stretch, for helping another runner, and for inspirational stories. There are no rules. The winner comes back as my guest the following year, and it’s the only bib that can be deferred to another year if the runner can’t make it.

This time it goes to a volunteer-runner, but as you might guess, not just any volunteer-runner.

Remember how I started this piece about those magical flags appearing on the afternoon before the race? There were trail pixies out there laying down hundreds and hundreds of those flags on Saturday afternoon.

The Chief Trail Pixie doesn’t need direction from me. She puts together the team to lay them down, and to sweep them up over the next couple days. From my vantage point, it’s just magic that happens in the woods, virtually unseen.

Races don’t happen without volunteers. They are really the secret sauce for any decent event, and the reason we get such great reviews, handling a multitude of different functions. While race tradition specifies that speedsters wear single-digit and double-digit bib numbers, at P2P we give them to our volunteers.

Our Chief Trail Pixie is none other than Nina Steinberg, who’s also the only runner to have completed all 11 Paine to Pain races. This year, her bib said, 11(!).

For all that you do to help out Nina, and to lay down the trail for so many hundreds of runners year after year after year, I am exceptionally grateful. There’s a good reason you get a shout-out every year from the start line and a good reason for you to be singled out for this modest Race Director’s Prize. Thank you.

And now a closing thought: You know what else would be magical? A horseback rider appearing in colonial garb galloping up Broadview leading the first wave charge. With a Betsy Ross flag. Know anyone? Asking for a friend…

Eric Turkewitz
Race Director

Real job:






Pre-Race FAQ – 2018

Holy crap it’s almost race day! Now for the details you’ve been waiting for:

With a bit of luck, this answers all your questions, though some of you will refuse to read to the bottom and send me questions anyway. There are also new items, so veterans should read carefully.

1.         Number Pick-up: We had record registration this year and we strongly encourage runners to pick up bibs and shirts prior to race day at Westchester Road Runner, at 179 E. Post Road in White Plains:
Friday: 5-8 pm
Saturday: 10 am-4 pm

Please pick up your own number and nobody else’s. Please bring ID. The only exception is for picking up for someone with your same last name or address.

You will receive a free copy of Trail Runner Magazine while supplies last.

In addition, Westchester Road Runner is offering 20% off non-sale shoes and clothes at the time you pick up your number and will raffle off three pairs of shoes to those who pick up at the store.

And bring your “gently used” shoes that you no longer wear to the store or the start line. These will be donated to Hope Community Services in New Rochelle. Rule of thumb: If you haven’t worn them in a year, donate them to someone in need.

If you don’t pick up your packet beforehand, please leave ample time before the race for parking, packet pick up, port-o-potties, bag check and schmoozing. We don’t really care if you schmooze, we just want you to get there early and not frantically running up at the last second demanding attention. Race day pick up is from 7:00 – 8:30 in the race staging area.

2.         Start Time: Wave 1 starts with a gunshot at 9 am, unless the musket misfires a couple times and I have to holler “Go!” All prior races have gone off exactly on time.

3.         Wave Start/Assignments: Five waves, with 150-200 in each, leaving three minutes apart.

Your bib numbers and wave assignments are on the website. You need to know your wave to claim your number.

Do not jump forward to another wave. The race is chip timed and we know where you’re supposed to start. Don’t screw that up. Dropping back to run with a friend, however, is fine.

Overall 1-2-3 is gun time from the first wave, so let us know if you think you might be on the overall podium but weren’t placed in Wave 1. Age groups awards, however, are by chip time so it doesn’t matter where you start.

Some runners in later waves will be faster than those in earlier ones. This is deliberate, and helps to fill the gaps between the waves, since putting all of the middle-of-the-pack runners in the same wave is counter-productive. We hate congestion on the trails.

4.         Number transfers are not permitted. Veteran P2Pers will remember that if you transfer a number a kitten will die. We sold a ton of bibs stupid-cheap last year for $30, but only did that because we knew many folks wouldn’t be able to use them (it actually costs about $40/runner to put on the race). We do it because it’s a fun perk; you do it because it’s a fun gamble. If transfers were allowed the price would be higher.

And if you transfer a number you also foul up the results and could deprive another person of an award.  This is another of the reasons for the no transfer (and no refund) policy.

This is a fund-raiser to improve the trails you are running on and for local charities when the work is done. This is what we have done for the trails and what we hope to do in the future.

5.       Shirts are guaranteed to those who registered by September 1st. If you don’t get a shirt at check-in, you can pick one up after the race on a first come, first serve basis (depending on the number of no-shows) at the NewRo Runners tent. Our shirt policy can be found at this link. And look for the secret message on the back of the shirt!

6.      Late Registration: If your friends still haven’t registered, well isn’t that lazy? And kind of pathetic for endurance athletes?

If they come to number pick-up on Friday or Saturday, or maybe on race day from 7:00-8:30, they can register in person. Please have them fill out this form prior to coming in, so that our swamped volunteers can move quickly.

7.      Parking is available in two parking lots and on the street. The very small lot in front of the High School will fill up early. The very large lot behind the High School on Clove Road has a walkway bringing you past the front of the school toward the start.

Don’t even think about parking on Broadview, as that is the racecourse. Click here for a printable map of the parking areas, which you can click again to enlarge. Please consider carpooling to alleviate congestion.

8.      Public transportation from NYC: Easy-peasy. Click this link.

A taxi from the station should cost about $7. We expect many NYC runners so keep your eyes open to share a taxi to hook up with others. Your mileage may vary on use of the phrase hook up.

Or use our Facebook page to see if you can meet another runner. Maybe you’ll get luckier than you can imagine.

9.      Baggage Drop is available just steps from the start. You can check one bag, which will be brought to the finish line. Your bib will have a numbered pull tag that can be pinned to your bag. Please don’t leave valuables in the bags, as we are not responsible for them.

Emotional baggage, however, must be taken with you on the trail. There’s only so much our volunteers can do.

10.      Course Markings: Our team of Trail Pixies expect to lay down about 500 bright pink flags with our Colonial Runner logo, placed at trail intersections and occasional intervals. Some people will insist on ignoring the flags and run off course anyway.

11.       Stay on Trail!  A couple of times folks went off trail on some of the single track and disturbed wasp nests. This was not fun for the wasps, or the hundreds of runners staring them down. You will have plenty of opportunities to pass others without going off trail. Promise.

12.      Toilets: Porto-potties at the start (get there early!), the 7.5-mile mark (Saxon Woods golf course) and bathrooms at the high school finish.

13.       New Finish Line / No post-race showers: The high school track is still under construction so we must use the practice field on the other side of the school. That means no access to the locker rooms and showers this year. Sorry ’bout that.

14.      Water/Medical: Water and medical attention will be available at only three spots during the race, in addition to the start and finish. These aid stations are at miles 4-ish, 7.5-ish and 10.8-ish. Carry supplemental water if the weather is warm/humid. Also, we now have Ultima Replenisher sports drink at the three aid stations.

The finish line medical tent will be staffed by Montefiore New Rochelle Hospital and EMTs from Empress Emergency Services will staff the three aid stations. We hope you don’t visit them, except to say thanks.

15.      Mid-Race Drop-Out: If you get injured, or are too exhausted to finish, you should check in with a volunteer at an aid station. If you can’t make it to the aid station, tell a volunteer on the course. If you tell the police you are injured they will transport you to the emergency room, not the finish line.

16.      The course closes: Sweepers will discharge police and volunteers, starting in Wave 5 and finishing in three hours. Please stay in front of the sweepers! We estimate that middle-of-the-pack finishing times will be your regular 1/2 marathon pace plus an extra 15 minutes to account for the rough terrain.  If you’re slower than the sweeper you are on your own (but we’ll leave the flags in place so you won’t be lost, just lonely).

17.      Post-Race: We should have lots of good food. Do we know how to treat you well or what? Check it out:

AJ’s Burgers
Texas Roadhouse
North End Tavern
Hand Crafted Catering and Events
Athletic Brewing Company
H&R Bialy
18.    Several physical and massage therapists will be on hand. Pre-race will be staffed by Fusion House Sports Training and Fitness.  Post-race will be staffed by Symmetry PT and by Finish Line PT.19.       No Dogs: We have dogs. We like their happy, wagging tails and we like scratching their bellies. They are the darlings of social media, though the cats think otherwise.  Sadly, we don’t get to make the rules for the school grounds. That means Tucker, Princess and Snoopy have to stay home.

20.       Volunteers: This event is put on by NewRo Runners. Our entire race committee, race director included, is volunteer. We expect 200+ volunteers on race day. Please be nice to them, they are working hard. Kissing volunteers is enthusiastically permitted. Kissees must be 18 or older to participate.

21.       Free Photos: New this year, your bib will have an electronic code on the front. So when the cameras snap your pic the photos can get automatically indexed. The photos are free.  So wear your bib on the front!  Wearing it on your back or the side of your leg does not make you look super cool. Trust me.

22.       Camping: We got approval for camping very late, so there are still plenty of spots available at just $15/pp right in the staging area.  Registration is here.

Feedback: We started with 50 people in 2008 and expect 850-900 this year. The vast majority of our runners learned of the race by word of mouth. We encourage feedback regarding the event to know what works and what doesn’t as we continue to grow and continue to rely on word of mouth as our main means of marketing.

Good luck out there on Sunday! 

Eric Turkewitz
Race Director

Real job:

7 Things to Know

With the race just weeks away, please take note of important stuff!

  1. The Paine to Pain Preview is September 23th at 8 am. Come join NewRo Runners for a course check. You don’t have to be signed up for the race to participate. There are no fees. The run is self-supported and running guides will lead various pace groups. In order to accommodate those that want to run shorter distances, the race will not start at the P2P start line. Details are here.
  2. Free photos! You read that right, we’ll once again have professional photographers out there on the course and then we’ll give you those hi-res digital photos for nothin’. Nada. Zero. Zip. Zilch. More free!!! Woo hoo!!! We’ll try to catch your favorite side — the one with most mud if we’re lucky enough to get rain.
  3. If you haven’t registered yet, WHAT THE HELL HAVE YA’ BEEN WAITING FOR!? Do it now. Don’t screw this up because we may well sell this sucker out (we are 27% ahead of last year’s registration pace, as I type) even though we’re planning on 5 waves. Delay at your own risk.  As the great Brian Wilson said, “Catch a wave and you’re sitting on top of the world.” And as I said, “Miss the wave and you’re a putz.
  4. Ultra Runners – Interested in running 26.2 on race day? We bring this feature back due to popular demand! If you’d like to do a “warm up lap” before the race, please shoot us an email. (The warm-up lap is not a race, not timed, unsupported and will likely be dark when you set off. These are features, not bugs.)
  5. Volunteer sign-up has begun! As every runner knows, races don’t happen without volunteers. Period. This year we turn to an online sign-up system. If you aren’t running, we need you!
  6. Camping! For the first time ever, we are hoping for permission from New Rochelle to allow limited camping right at the start line the night before the race, thereby making it easier for people living outside the region to come run.  Small tents, no open fires, very limited availability, wake up early. Stay tuned for details!
  7. Other Races: P2P is, as many of you know, part of the Trail Mix Series. These two races precede ours, if you want to prep for P2P:

Where the Pavement Ends – September 16th, 4.25 miles
Sarah Bishop Bushwhack – September 30th, 10K

The P2P course is in great shape. At the moment. Without a major storm dropping trees in our way.

Also, we welcome back Westchester Road Runner of White Plains, sponsoring this race for the 11th consecutive year!  And New Rochelle Chevrolet, which has sent pace cars up Broadview in years past (and, ahem, had ample chocolate chip cookies at the finish line).

And if your injuries are more hardcore than muscle fatigue – and let’s hope that isn’t the case – Empress EMS will be out there on the course again at the three aid stations and Montefiore New Rochelle will (wo)man the finish line medical tent!

We’re lining up food and other sponsors as we type!! We’re excited!!

Race day is my favorite day! — OK, after my anniversary, and wife and kids’ birthdays…I’m required by law to say that …hi honey! did you get to the bottom of this long email I just sent to a few thousand of my nearest and dearest?

Paine to Pain Price Increase!

Kelsey Luoma flies over the trails in route to becoming the 2017 Women’s Champion.

OK, a coupla things. One has to do with money (the price goes up after August 15th) and the other with race updates.

First the updates: In 2008, a grand total of 50 people ran this race. The last three years, we averaged 700 (from 975 registered). And now? We are over 30% ahead of that, with 750 registered, and on track for the biggest, grandest, Paine to Pain ever.

But. And you knew there had to be a “but” didn’t you? We will not oversell the race – we will not swamp the trail with too many runners.

The shirts, medals, music, water bottles, free photos, enthusiastic volunteers, exceptional food and most awesomest race director around are all sweet perks, and all being planned, but race logistics have always been the nuts and bolts of putting on this race through the woods.

We will run 5 waves again. If we get too many people signing up in the closing weeks we will shut down registration. You’ve been warned.

Race date is October 7th (Columbus Day Sunday for you out-of-towners looking for a chance to visit the area.

But not only is the race great, but it remains cheap, cheap, cheap!  We announced eons ago that you would have through August 15th – Wednesday night! —  to register for a price of just $55. And we will keep that promise. Then the price goes up again!

Fiddy-five bucks!! That’s it! For the best damn trail half this side of the Mississippi? Actually, the best damn trail half on either side of the Mississippi!

How good is this race? Ask anyone that has done it, or read the comments of others from 2015.  If you think we’ve slept on our laurels, check out what runners had to say last year.

The link to register is here!

Sponsors are lining up to return, as we speak, including these on the top line: Westchester Road Runner (all 11 years!)  NewRo Chevy (again), Montefiore New Rochelle Hospital (we hope you don’t need them), Empress EMS (please, please, don’t need them either) and Finish Line PT (step right up!!).

OK, that’s it for now: Don’t screw this up!!! Register here!

Hey, ho – let’s go!

Eric Turkewitz
Race Director
Paine to Pain Trail Half Marathon
Westchester County, NY

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

Price Going Up!

Holy smokes, Memorial Day has come and gone and it’s now, officially, the unofficial start of summer!

And peaking under the hood of our registrations I see that this weekend we surpassed 500 registrations!  That puts us a whopping 30% ahead of last year!  Will we sell out?

So here are three brief things to ponder:

1.         If you haven’t registered yet, the price goes up this Friday,  June 1st. Until then, it’s still just 50 bucks!!  And if you have registered, have you told all of your running friends about the 2nd best race in the NY metro area? (I’ve got my eye on you, NYC Marathon.)

Remember, friends don’t let their friends miss awesome races. Register here!

2.         We now have a free training program for half marathon rookies, courtesy of Podium Training Systems. Its head honcho, Dave Burgess, is a certified level 2 USA Triathlon coach who knows a thing or two about these trails since he used to live here, trained on them and is a P2P alumnus. And if you’re a seasoned runner looking to improve yourself, he’s got plans for you too! Head over to Podium Training for Paine to Pain for all the details on the free beginner program, or the advanced training plan!

3.         Two upcoming races for you:

This Sunday, June 3rd:  A Mild Sprain — the second race of seven in the Trail Mix Trail Series will be run in Sprain Ridge Park in Yonkers, NY (right off the Sprain Parkway).
The 5-mile course is a terrific test of trail running. It has some great climbs, fun downhills, single track, switchbacks, and plenty of rocks and logs to navigate.
All net proceeds go to JDRF whose mission is to find a cure for type 1 diabetes and its complications through the support of research.

On June 10th:  The North Avenue Mile is Back!!  NewRo Runners and Tailwind Track Club will once again put on the flattest, straightest certified mile you’ll find next to the 5th Avenue Mile. With waves for every age and ability, easy access, extensive parking, and a post-race festival. For speed demons and families alike!

That’s it for now.  P2P race day is four months away, and if you’re a rookie at this you don’t want to take the course lightly. Train now, run a few other races, and get ready to tackle our one-of-a-kind necklace of trails on October 7th!

And thank you once again to last year’s top tier sponsors:


Paine to Pain Registration is Open!!




RACE DATE IS October 7!!!


And the price on opening day?  ONCE AGAIN IT’S JUST $50!!! Yes! Just! Fifty! Bucks!

Some races charge you $30 just for a picture! Ha! That’s why some races suck!  But we give you the race, the food, the shirt, the medals and the photos all for $50! And me! You get me! Whether you like it or not!

Is NewRo Runners an awesome race club, or what!?!

So now and forever more, October 7, 2018 will join other great October 7’s in history:

1714 People riot due to beer tax in Alkmaar, Netherlands
1806 Carbon paper patented in London by inventor Ralph Wedgwood
1952 First “Bandstand” broadcast in Philadelphia on WFIL-TV
1975 US decides John Lennon won’t be deported due to UK pot conviction
1982 Musical “Cats” opens at Winter Garden Theater on Broadway NYC and runs for nearly 18 years
2003 Gray Davis is recalled and Arnold Schwarzenegger becomes governor of California.
2018 Paine to Pain!!!

With that in mind, we have three pieces of news!!!

1.          Registration is now open!  For one of the great trail races not just in this area, but in the whole country! In fact, the whole planet! About 90% of this course is in the cool shade of the trees, just four short train stops from midtown Manhattan!

Is the race any damn good?  In my completely unbiased opinion as race founder/director/grand poobah, it’s an even better run than Pam Anderson in slow motion on Baywatch. Yes, it’s that good! Even Mrs. Poobah agrees!

Read the reviews from 2017! Or 2016! Or 2015! Or 2014! Or 2013! Or 2012!

Or read the two-page spread on the race in Trail Runner Magazine. Uh, huh. That’s right. National press, baby. We baaad! And not in a creepy, Michael Jackson kinda way.

2.         We now have a free training program for half marathon rookies, courtesy of Podium Training Systems. Its head honcho, Dave Burgess, is a certified level 2 USA Triathlon coach who knows a thing or two about these trails since he used to live here, trained on them and is a P2P alumnus. And if you’re a seasoned runner looking to improve yourself, he’s got plans for you too! Head over to Podium Training for Paine to Pain for all the details on the free beginner program, or the advanced training plan!

3.         Paine to Pain is now part of the Trail Mix Series!! Read all about it at that link and check out the other great trail races in the Westchester and southern Connecticut area:
April 22 – Leatherman’s Loop (lottery)
June 3 – A Mild Sprain (register)
September 16 – Where the Pavement Ends (register)
September 30 – Sarah Bishop Bushwhack (register)
(Bushwack? Damn, that’s good. Why didn’t I think of that?)
October 22 – Run The Farm (register)
November 11– Raven Rocks Run (register)

Can I get a Hallelujah?

And thank you once again to last year’s top tier sponsors:

Eric Turkewitz, Race Director

Real job:


Paine to Pain Joins Trail Mix Series!

Paine to Pain has now joined the Trail Mix Race Series! This is a group of races organized to help promote trail running in Westchester and southern Connecticut.

The Trail Mix was founded by our friends at the legendary Leatherman’s Loop, which is preparing for its 32nd running on April 22, 2018 — that would be Earth Day, and the same day that registration for Paine to Pain opens each year.

It was the Loop that provided one of the inspirations for P2P, even though I had not yet run it.  It’s deservedly epic reputation preceded my eventual appearance at its start line. The concept of people racing over fields and single track, through rivers and mud, sounded just glorious to someone who’d paced a few too many miles across asphalt.

Entry to the Loop is now by lottery since the race sells out.

But there’s another way to get in, and that is to participate in the Trail Mix races — thus promoting trail running, parks and a generally healthy year-round lifestyle.

There will now be seven Trail Mix races, and if you run in four of them you get automatic selection in the Loop Lottery when you enter it the next year. And there are also awards for those running in the series.

This is now the full list of races in the Trail Mix Series (Leatherman’s is obviously closed already)

2018 Registration Opens!!! (But only briefly)

2017 Women’s Champ, Kelsey Luoma

We’re doing it yet again!  With a wonderfully successful P2P 2017 now in the bag (recap hereresults here), registration has just opened for Paine to Pain 2018, with a tentative date of October 7th!

And we are once again doing it for the stupid-cheap price of $30! Yes, you read that right:


Why sell entries for $30 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 you seen the reviews?

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

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 policy. If folks violate our honor code and give unused bibs to friends at the last minute, there is no reason for us to continue the program. Basically, the race would lose money 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.).
Men’s 2017 champ Arnaud Enjalbert

So you get stupid-cheap in exchange for a bigger risk of no-show due to injury, or conflict with your yet-to-be born nephew’s party celebrating that he’s now 3 months old and big enough for the baby jogger so your sister can race around town with him as she works off the pregnancy weight but won’t be able to use on Paine to Pain because it’s on trails!

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 four days! Did you get that? (Closing Friday at 11:59 p.m.)

Just. Four. Days.

Register here.

The rush to register the last two years was 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 40% 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 work…but don’t forget to claim your free photos from 2017!!

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




Supporting Sponsors:

In cooperation with:

Paine to Pain Preview (Updated for 2018)

Updated for 2018:

NewRo Runners, the group that organizes the Paine to Pain Trail Half Marathon, will host a preview run of the course on September 23rd at 8 am. Please arrive 10-15 minutes early so that we can start promptly. 

All runners are invited to join us for this trail run, whether you are signed up for the race or not, and whether you want to run the whole loop or just a section (see below).

The preview is not a race, but simply a guided running tour of the P2P course, hosted by NewRo Runners, who will do this run as one of our regular weekend group runs.

We’ll 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 – training for 3:20 marathon or faster (or 1:30 ½-marathon)
  • Medium – training for 3:20 – 4:00 marathon (or 1:30 – 2:00  ½-marathon)
  • Slower – training for 4-5:00 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. Just send me an email, or tweet (@PaineToPain) or mention it on our Facebook page, so that I have a general sense of how big our crowd will be and how many pacers we will need, 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 leopard print shorts of the guy in front of you.

You can also run a shorter distance if you choose.

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 stop along the way, at the Saxon Woods Golf Club, which has bathrooms as well, and is at the 6.8-ish-mile mark for this run (and the 7.5-mile mark for the actual race).

Your options are:

  • 5.6 miles — Out and back on the Leatherstocking trail, which is marked.
  • 10 miles — Stay with the group until we head south down the Hutchinson River Trail (after passing the water stop) and then bail out when at Pinebrook Boulevard.  This is the same street we started on, but two miles away. Then run those two miles on Pinebrook 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’re tired.

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

And our thanks again to our gold level sponsors: