years ago in 1976, the Falconi family that was operating the
Westboro Speedway tried something different as they promoted a
Modified race for mid November with heated grandstands. The
Falconi's owned and operated an oil company and closed in the under
part of the grandstand and used huge fuel oil powered heaters.
Needless to say, the experiment worked as everyone was toasty warm.
Leo Cleary in the Tiger Tom Dunn T-5
led the 50 lap main event from pole to pole. Bugsy Stevens finished
second and was followed by George Murray, Mike Murphy, Bob Santos,
Pete Fiandaca, Dick Caso and Roland LaPierre Jr.
Five years ago in 1991, the Oswego Speedway was put up for sale with
a price tag of $3 million. In Winston Cup racing at Atlanta, Jerry
Nadeau was in the lead and heading for the win when he ran out of
gas with less than a half lap to go. Bobby Labonte took the lead
with less than 100 yards to go and went on to record the win. Nadeau
coasted across the finish line in fourth spot.
Last year, It looked like long time Whelen Modified Tour Series
competitor and former champion Jamie Tomaino would be relocating
from his native New Jersey to North Carolina. Tomaino, who is the
senior member of the tour, will more than likely compete on the
Whelen Southern Modified Tour in 2006. Tomaino finished 11th in the
2005 Mod Tour standings. In 17 events he scored nine top tens
including only two top five’s.
The Stafford Motor Speedway held their the 36th annual Champions
Awards Ceremony at the La Renaissance Banquet Facility in East
Windsor. The Speedway honored its four 2005 track champions, Lloyd
Agor, Ryan Posocco, Michael Bennett, and Joey Ferrigno. In addition
to recognizing the 2005 track champions, SMS recognized the top-20
in points from the SK Modified, Late Model, and DARE Stock
divisions, the top-10 finishers from the Limited Late Model
division, as well as present the Most Popular and Most Improved
Driver awards, and the Reliable Welding and Speed Rookie of the Year
Lloyd Agor beat out Todd Owen by 30 points for the SK Modified
title. In 21 starts, Agor recorded 14 top tens including two wins.
Willie Hardie, Ted Christopher and Frank Ruocco rounded out the top
five. Ryan Posocco outdistanced Tom Butler by 46 points to win the
Late Model title.
The New England Antique Racers announced their inductees to the NEAR
Hall of Fame, class of 2006. Gene Angellilo, Russ Conway & Ken
Smith, Robbie Crouch, Fred 'Sharkey' Gaudiosi, Jim McGee, Phil & Bob
Libby, Joe Rosenfield, "Boston Louie' Seymour; Dick Wolstenhume and
the V-8 guys, Vic Bombacci & Bob Vitari. Word came from Ron Hedger
that the New York Stock Car Association’s 2006 Hall of Fame
induction ceremony would honor a broad spectrum of achievement in
the sport, with the honorees including the Empire State’s most
prominent NASCAR Winston Cup driver, a longtime modified owner, a
top regional racer and a husband / wife team of officials. Geoff
Bodine, Ed Cloce who has been a car owner for ages with his famous
Hemi-Cuda No.69, Cloce remains active, fielding Modifieds for son
Tommy in NASCAR and Race of Champions events. Dick Schoonover, Jim
Frye was a racer in the early 50’s but found his true calling in
1955 when he began flagging with another Hall of Fame member, the
late Chet Hames. The duo worked speedways from New Jersey to Canada.
Freye’s wife Barb, a scorer is also among the inductees. Both Jim
and Barb have also been active in NYSSCA, having served as Sergeant
at Arms and Treasurer, respectively, for a number of years.
It looked like there would be some new blood in the SK Modified
division in 2006 as it looked like Jeffrey Paul would be moving up
to the Waterford Speedbowl’s top division. Gary Paul, Jeff’s dad,
purchased the Ron Yuhas No.6. Paul, who was the 2005 Legends
Champion at the Speedbowl is also a graduate of the Quarter Midget
ranks and without too much practice should be a top contender. Gary
Paul is no stranger as he already had one Modified Championship
under his belt at the Waterford oval with Todd Ceravolo as his
In Plainfield, CT, Opponents of the domed auto racetrack that had
been proposed made significant inroads on Election Day, with
candidates they supported winning the first selectman's seat as well
as a pivotal seat on the Planning and Zoning Commission. Nelson E.
Lemiux, a Democrat who backed the racetrack proposed by New England
Raceway LLC and its president, Eugene Arganese, was ousted from the
commission. Two Republicans who opposed the project, John Meyer and
Susan Hatfield, were elected.
That’s about it for this week from 40 Clark St, Westerly, and
R.I.02891. Ring my chimes at 401-596-5467 E-mail: