Sid’s View Expanding Horizons In 2014 While Pushing Toward Completion Of Unique Documentary

The gang that started by shooting fun videos on race nights primarily from the grandstand at the Waterford Speedbowl will take huge steps in growing and evolving their brand of local short track racing documentation in 2014.

Tom "Sid" DiMaggio (right) and camera operator Brett Gleason work at the Waterford Speedbowl (Photo: Tiesha DiMaggio/Vault Crew Productions)

Tom “Sid” DiMaggio (right) and camera operator Jess Gleason work at the Waterford Speedbowl (Photo: Tiesha DiMaggio/Vault Crew Productions)

The gang from the Vault Productions Crew, led by Tom “Sid” DiMaggio, are adding more and more to their racing plate for 2014.

The Sid’s View series of race event “webisodes” has branched slightly from the Speedbowl in recent years, but in 2014 the group will take its biggest leaps yet.

Sid’s View will not only continue to cover racing full-time for all events at the Waterford Speedbowl in 2014, but the group will also produce the short form websisode series for all events at Thompson Speedway this season. They will also have special coverage of the July 23 Open Wheel Wednesday show at Seekonk (Mass.) Speedway and the three events that make up the Thirty Raceway Triple Crown on the Northeast Mini Stock Tour (April 26 at Stafford Motor Speedway. May 31 at Waterford, Oct. 18 at Thompson). All this while also working towards completion of the documentary the team has been working to produce on the Waterford Speedbowl.

“Expanding away from Waterford is different and we will continue to look into visiting other tracks, but the Speedbowl is our home base,” DiMaggio said. “The size of the track is ideal to provide really good coverage and adjust on the fly no matter what happens. And there will always be certain elements, like the Webby-Cam, that is exclusive to the Speedbowl events. We are excited we’ve found a way to branch out a bit without it having any affect on our ability to cover the Speedbowl’s weekly events. [The] only two conflicts are Icebreaker Saturday (and for the [Northeast Mini Stock Tour] event on Sizzler Saturday [at Stafford] when we will have split crews at both [Stafford] and Waterford.

“We will be debuting our new Aerial Cam at Blast Off this year – quadcopter drone unit that can hover over the facility during event. Each year we try to come out with something new. Last year it was our new graphics package, the year before it was the Webby-Cam, this year it’ll be the Aerial Cam. We think it will give us another great view of the racing action”

Thompson’s shortened seven-event oval track schedule this year offered the Vault Productions Crew the perfect opportunity to expand to another track full-time.

“It would be difficult to do more than one track on a weekly basis like we do at Waterford simply because there is only so much time to edit them together,” DiMaggio said. “There will be challenges – Thompson’s size is definitely going to take some time to get used to on race day coordinating all the cameras around the track. We also won’t have co-producer Jesse Gleason and senior camera operator Brent Gleason available because they both compete in the Limited Sportsman division at Thomspon. but we have a good group for our Thompson crew, all of whom have helped us out at one point during our Sid’s View shoots over the years. Everyone at Thompson has been great and with [former Waterford Speedbowl race director] Scott Tapley as the race director [at Thompson], there’s someone there familiar with how we produce the web series on raceday. That should help make it a smooth adjustment for the first few events”

The 2014 season will mark the fifth season of the Sid’s View webisode series, which has seen the group produced 260 videos. And by the end of the season the group hopes to have interviews completed with over 80 people for their Speedbowl documentary project for a hopeful DVD box set release in 2015.

For the documentary project DiMaggio and his crew have interviewed New England Auto Racers Hall of Famers Dave Humphrey, Fred Luchesi, Bob Potter & Pete Zanardi. They also have spent time with important figures in Speeedbowl history like Phil Rondeau, Bob Gada, Mike Daignault, Mark LaJeunesse, Dennis Gada, Jeff Pearl. writer Bones Bourcier, photographer Steve Kennedy, announcer Bob Freeman, historian John Brouwer, and team owners Peg Gaudreau and owner “Flash” Gordon Rodgers

“We’ve pushed back the completion date a few times, but we have no budget & no investors, so those dates can flex without much consequence,” DiMaggio said. “We’d rather take our time and do it right, then rush it and compromise quality. It’s a long story, and after the interviews are done, there’s the next phase of collecting & converting more archive footage and photographs to use in the final edit.”

Anyone interested in contributing memorabilia, photographs or video or film of the Speedbowl in any format should contact DiMaggio by e-mail [email protected]. Also, anybody interested in getting involved in sponsorship for any part of the Sid’s View productions should visits the Sid’s View website for full details on sponsorship packages that are currently available.

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  1. Personally i think the aerial cam during an event is pushing it too far for several reasons. #1 Spectator Safety: Quad copters have 4 blades spinning at very high RPMs to get enough lift to carry a camera around, even as small as a gopro. Even an expert quad pilot can lose control at times….whether human error or electronic error….but if that copter comes down in a crowd of people it can cause some serious injuries. #2 what if if comes down on track and causes a wreck. #3 what if the radio frequency interferes with one of the spotters or driver’s radios. just some thoughts

  2. I am MUCH more concerned of debris or a car flying into the stands than a quad copter.

  3. Dan Butler:
    Gee, thanks mom.

    Like rich said, go to Waterford and look at the catch fence (but not to hard or it might fall over!). Sit on the grandstands that are 1/3 open because the other 2/3 is closed due to structural issues that were supposed to be fixed at the beginning of last season.

    I have faith in Sid and his crew that they have tested this “copter” and have tried to make it as safe as possible. They wouldn’t launch something like this if it presented a safety issue. GoPro’s are as light as a feather and those toy helicopters aren’t much heavier. IF it were to fall in the stands I highly doubt someone would get more than a bump on the head. If it fell on the track… the camera would be wrecked… not the cars.

  4. All valid concerns but I think you’ll need to wait n’ see how we plan to use it. Hovering over the track during green flag segments in not one of them.

  5. Sharpie Fan says

    Can’t wait for the box set to come out!

  6. Crazy in NY says

    Will be a great asset to the Sid show I think. Be perfect as a “meltdown” cam.

    Sid, make sure you put a mic on that thing too. That would have been perfect to

    see and hear the “conversation” that Nichole and Teddy had at last years Blastoff.

    If your worried about the copter falling on you wear a hockey helmet to the races.

  7. i rest my case……they are much harder to fly than people think and it takes many hours of practice to get smooth professional shots without crashing.

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