The Chrome Horn - Champ Trail with Phil Smith


December 9, 2014

The never-ending saga and soap opera at the Waterford continues. Internet racing web site RaceDayCT reported Ed DeMuzzio, a creditor in the foreclosure case involving the Speedbowl, filed a "motion to reconsider" with the court, asking the judge that approved the sale price set at the auction to reconsider that ruling. The motion is not a formal appeal of the approval.

  DeMuzzio had been facing a Thursday, Dec 6 deadline to file a formal appeal of the approval of the sale price set at the Oct. 18 foreclosure auction. "Weíre going to file what is called a motion to reconsider and ask that the judge reconsider or reexamine his earlier ruling with regard to our motion for our hearing to set aside a new sale date," said DeMuzzioís attorney, Michael Bonnano. "That is not an appeal. It is a practice book provision that allows the court to do exactly what it says, which is reconsider the earlier ruling. "It can be withdrawn at anytime, just like the appeal can, but itís something that tolls the appeal the period. Thatís the intent at this time, to ask the court to reconsider its earlier decision."

  A formal appeal of the approval of sale could delay transfer of the property from owner Terry Eames to Bemer for more than a year and could put the 2015 racing season at the track in jeopardy. DeMuzzio is at risk of losing $250,000, which includes about $110,000 invested in the property and about $140,000 in accrued interest, if the court approves the sale price.

  On Nov. 3 in New London Superior Court, judge Emmet Cosgrove heard objections to the sale filed by DeMuzzio and his company CCI Inc. Cosgrove filed a memorandum of decision on Nov. 14 in which he denied objections to the sale filed by DeMuzzio and approved the sale.

  This could drag on for a long time. Hopefully DeMuzzio will back off, lick his wounds and take a loss on his taxes.

  The Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park (TSMP) has released a creative and innovative seven (7) event schedule featuring twelve different touring series and sanctioning bodies, and boasting over $500,000 in posted awards. Two weekend events, and a five event Wednesday summer series, with four rain dates, make up the calendar. The schedule is highlighted by four NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour (NWMT) events, two new Triple Crown Series, and significant enhancements to the Sunoco World Series of Speedway Racing.

  For the 29th season, the track will operate under the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series banner, offering Sunoco Modified, Late Model, Limited Sportsman, and Mini Stock competitors the benefits of NASCAR membership, awards, as well as state and national championship competition.

  The season will begin with the 41st running of the Icebreaker on Friday, April 10 through Sunday, April 12. Modified fans will be in for a treat, as not only will the first race for the NWMT be part of the program, but TSMPís own Sunoco Modifieds will be featured in a 75-lap main event to kick off the facilityís 75th anniversary celebration. In addition to the full-fendered Late Models, Limited Sportsman, Mini Stocks, and Granite State Pro Stock Series, the winged NEMA Lite cars will make their maiden voyage to the historic Connecticut oval. The Vintage Outlaws and New England Truck Series will also be part of the action. Fans will have the opportunity to meet the stars and cars of all nine divisions on Sunday morning at the Fan Appreciation Party.

  A new addition to the schedule, which was announced in October, is the addition of another NWMT race. Scheduled for June 10, this 125-lap event will mark the first time since 2012 that the Tour will make four stops at TSMP. The Mini Stock and Limited Sportsman Divisions will be on stage for the summer series opener, also, as they compete in the first race of their Triple Crown Series. New in 2015, both the Limited Sportsman and Mini Stock divisions will participate in three events in which their finishing positions will earn them both TSMP championship points and Triple Crown Series points. The Triple Crown will pay their own point fund and award the top three. The Sunoco Modified, Late Model, and Vintage Outlaws will all be part of an action-packed night of stock car racing, too.

  The second annual Late Model 20/20 Sprint will take place on Wednesday night, July 8. The popular format from the inaugural event will once again be used in 2015. An added bonus for the race winner, besides the handsome purse, will be a guaranteed starting position in the ACT Championship 100 at the Sunoco World Series of Speedway Racing in October. The second Triple Crown race for the Limited Sportsman, as well as the Mini Stocks and ground-pounding Sunoco Modifieds will all be in competition, as well.

  Slated for Wednesday, July 29, the Sunoco Modifieds will once again compete in a 20/20 Sprint. As with the Late Models, the same format from 2014 will be used, but with a new twist. Following the completion of the second segment, the overall leader will be given the opportunity to take advantage of a bounty, by forfeiting his/her starting position and starting in the rear for a cash prize, should he or she emerge the overall winner following the 10-lap sprint. As part of this must-see event, the Mini Stocks will compete in their second Triple Crown race, and the Vintage Outlaws will make their third of four stops to the Big T. Late Models and Limited Sportsman will also do battle in championship point races.

  One of TSMPís favorite summer traditions, a 150-lap NWMT race, will once again be back on the docket for August 12. An added bonus this year will be the addition of the Northeastern Midget Association for a 25-lap race, which is guaranteed to feature at least two NWMT drivers in the field. The Sunoco Modifieds, Late Models, Mini Stocks, and the final Limited Sportsman Triple Crown race fill out a very robust night of racing.

  The last event of the five-race summer series will feature a double points opportunity for the Sunoco Modifieds. Twin 25-lap main events will be contested for TSMPís top-tier division. The Late Models, Limited Sportsman, Vintage Outlaws, and the final Triple Crown race for the Mini Stock division will be part of a Back-to-School Bash night, giving families one more opportunity to hit the race track before school begins.
Rounding out the season will be the Sunoco World Series of Speedway Racing. TSMPís final event will showcase fifteen divisions that will compete over the course of three days. Culminating with the final NWMT event of the season on Sunday afternoon, NASCARís oldest touring division will be supported by some of the regionís most popular touring series: the International Supermodified Association, Valenti Modified Racing Series, and Northeastern Midget Association. The addition of the 100-lap championship race for the American-Canadian Tour on Saturday will feature New Englandís most talented full-fendered drivers, and adds to an already star-studded lineup of events. TSMPís own Sunoco Modified, Late Model, Limited Sportsman, and Mini Stock divisions will be joined by the New England Truck Series, North East Mini Stock Tour, New England Pro 4 Modifieds, and Lite Modifieds Ė who will be back after a one-year hiatus. The North East Street Stock Tour will end their inaugural season by crowing their first champion on Saturday night. The NEMA Lites, too, will be competing in their first World Series event, hosting their final points race on Sunday afternoon. When all is said and done, nearly 600 laps of feature competition will be contested, and fourteen new champions will have been born.

  Shortly after the season ending Whelen Modified Tour Series event at Thompson Donnie Lia informed Bob Garbarino that he was leaving Mystic Missile Racing to seek other avenues. Lia and Mark Sypher whom Glen Reen drove for last year announced that they have joined forces to run the 2015 NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour (NWMT) in the No. 8 Chevrolet. Lia, who has 17 wins in the touring series, will pilot a LFR Chassis in 2015. Numerous rumors concerning the future of Mystic Missile Racing have come to light but have not been confirmed.
The Valenti Modified Racing Series staged their 11th annual Awards Banquet at the Best Western Executive Inn in Manchester, NH this past weekend. Taking center stage was series driving champion Justin Bonsignore and series owner champion Art Barry. Bonsignore is the fifth champion in the 11-year series history.

  In his victory speech Bonsignore thanked his pit crew for their hard work and dedication, crew chief Kenny Barry, Spafco Race Cars & Parts, Spearpoint Racing, series sponsor Bob Valenti Auto Mall, VMRS officials, and gave a heartfelt thank you to car-owner Barry for making it possible and for giving him the opportunity and privilege to be part of a race team loaded with successful history for over 60 years.

  Barry, of Preston, CT, when introduced, received a rousing standing ovation for his second series title and for his dedication to modified racing. An emotional Barry thanked all for their support and was read a special message from his wife, Deb, who for the first time was unable to attend due to illness.

  In addition to Bonsignore, the top 14 drivers in the standings received recognition and awards from series president Jack Bateman including; runner-up Rowan Pennink, Richard Savary, Chris Pasteryak, Max Zachem, Mike Willis. Jr, Steve Masse, Keith Rocco, Norm Wrenn, Todd Szegedy, Dylan, Kopec, Tommy Barrett, Woody Pitkat, Matt Mead, and Ted Christopher.

  The 2014 Specialty Awards, chosen by series officials were presented. Those included Spafco Most Improved Driver: David Schneider, Tough Luck Award: Matt Mead, Sportsmanship Award: Willie Doucette, Mechanic of the Year: Kenny Barry, Rookie of the Year: #38 Michael Willis Jr, Dedication to Racing Award: Norm Wrenn, Volunteer of the Year Award: Ryan Doucette, Above and Beyond Award: Warren Alston and the Bob Polverari 7-11 Award: Norm Wrenn.

  During their annual series banquet Saturday, Valenti Modified Racing Series officials announced a tentative 17-race schedule for the 2015. The schedule includes 14 definite events with the possibility of three more added whenever the foreclosure issues are decided at the Waterford Speedbowl.

  Three events will be held at the Stafford Motor Speedway (May 22, June 26 and Sept. 4). The series will also compete at the Thompson Speedway as part of the Sunoco World Series of Speedway Racing on Oct. 17.

  Tentatively the season will open on April 18 at Monadnock Speedway in Winchester, N.H. Other events include Airborne Speedway in Plattsburgh, N.Y. (May 30), Seekonk (Mass.) Speedway (June 6), Lee USA Speedway in Lee, N.H. (June 19, Oct. 11), Monadnock (July 4, Aug. 22), Devilís Bowl Speedway in Fair Haven, Vt. (July 24), Beech Ridge Speedway in Scarborough Me. (Aug. 1) and Oxford Plains Speedway in Oxford, Me. (Aug. 29)

  On the speedway stock market scene last week all three speedway stocks ended the week on a positive note. Leading the way was Speedway Motorsports which went up 1.81 to 21.50. Dover Entertainment went up 0.06 to 2.63 and the International Speedway Corporation went up 0.02 to 31.50. NASCAR cup sponsor Sprint dropped 0.27 to 4.85 and NASCAR fuel supplier Sunoco (Energy Transfer) dropped 0.65 to 64.52 while NASCAR tire supplier Goodyear went up 0.17 to 27.58. Two of the three car builders had a good week. Toyota went up 5.90 to 129.03 and General Motors went up 0.50 to 33.93 while Ford dropped 0.03 to 15.70. In the home improvement sector, Lowes went up 1.03 to 64.86 and Home Depot went up 0.24 to 99.64. With the exception of Dupont which went up 1.64 to 73.07 and FedEx which went up 3.85 to 182.03 the sponsor related stocks were down. Coca-Cola dropped 5.22 to 89.34, Target Department Stores dropped 0.34 to 73.66 and Aarons Rentals dropped 0.58 to 27.80.

  On the tube this week: Pickings are slim!

  Wednesday, December 10

5:00 PM, NASCAR America, NBCSN
  Thursday, December 11
5:00 PM, NASCAR America, NBCSN
5:00 PM, NASCAR Race Hub, FS1
5:30 PM, How It's Made - Liquor Jugs, Deli Meats, NASCAR Engines, SCI
  Friday, December 12
4:30 AM, How It's Made - Impact Wrenches, Marble Sinks, Plantain Chips, NASCAR Cars, SCI
7:30 AM, How It's Made - Impact Wrenches, Marble Sinks, Plantain Chips, NASCAR Cars, SCI
5:00 PM, NASCAR America, NBCSN
5:30 PM, How It's Made - Impact Wrenches, Marble Sinks, Plantain Chips, NASCAR Cars, SCI

   Thatís about it for this week from 11 Gardner Drive, Westerly, and R.I.02891. Ring my chimes at 401-596-5467. E-mail:

Phil Smith has been a columnist for Speedway Scene and various
other publications for over 3 decades.

SourcePhil Smith / Champ Trail
Posted: December 9, 2014

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