Creditor Files Motion For Reconsideration Of Approval Of Foreclosure Auction Sale Of Waterford Speedbowl

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The Waterford Speedbowl

A creditor in the foreclosure auction case involving the Waterford Speedbowl filed a motion Wednesday that delays an expected appeal of the recent approval of the auction sale price of the track.

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 deadline to file a formal appeal of the approval of the sale price set at the Oct. 18 foreclosure auction.

Bruce Bemer was the high bidder – at $1.75 million – in the foreclosure auction of the Speedbowl. The Glastonbury businessman has said he intends to continue to run the property as a racing facility.

“We’re 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 DeMuzzio’s 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“It can be withdrawn at anytime, just like the appeal can, but it’s something that tolls the appeal the period. That’s 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.

There was just over $2 million owed on the property by owner Terry Eames at the time of the auction. The property had recently been valued at about $3 million and was being advertised on the market for sale with an asking price of $3.3 million prior to the auction.

In his objection, DeMuzzio alleged that there was collusion between creditors Rocco Arbitell, Peter Borelli, Theodore Parker and Shawn Parker to keep the bidding price low for the auction. DeMuzzio also argued that the property should have been better marketed to attract a higher bid in favor of creditors to realize returns on their debts.

On Nov. 17 DeMuzzio said: “Nobody is making any effort to try to help out here so I’ve got to what I’ve got to do. … It’s a lot of money. If it was fifty grand I would have said ‘That’s the way it goes’ but it’s not 50 grand and it’s just totally unfair. If we could get all the players that are involved to kick in a little bit, if I could just get half, some reasonable amount, I would be more than happy. I don’t need to get all my money back, I just want it to be fair.”

On Monday Bonnano had said his client was in the midst of negotiations for a possible resolution of issues.

Bonnano said Wednesday that after the judge rules on the motion to reconsider, should he decide the approval of the sale price still stands, it will allow for another 20 day period for DeMuzzio to decide if he will formally appeal.

“Although I feel like progress is being made, I have to take the steps necessary to protect my client’s interests,” Bonnano said.

Said DeMuzzio: “I think we’ve been as reasonable as we can be,” DeMuzzio said. “… Right now nothing has changed.”

In July 2007, Arbitell, a Southbury businessman and local racing supporter, along with his business associate Borrelli, stepped in to offer Eames and his ownership group, 1080 Hartford Road LLC, financing to avoid a foreclosure action being taken then by former mortgage holder Washington Mutual Bank. The deal with Arbitell was announced a day before the track’s auction date for a foreclosure in 2007.

In May 2008 Arbitell brought his own foreclosure action against the ownership group after former track operator Jerry Robinson failed to pay the Speedbowl’s property taxes.

Facing another pending foreclosure auction, Eames and 1080 Hartford Road LLC filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in October 2009. A debt reorganization plan was accepted by bankruptcy court in January 2012 and the ownership cleared bankruptcy not long after that.

In March 2013, Arbitell and the rest of the creditors involved in the bankruptcy moved to have foreclosure action retaken against the Speedbowl ownership, which led to the Oct. 18 auction.

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  1. The Reg Fan says

    Lets fast forward this and save many folks a lot of time and money. Demuzzio, you are going to lose. It was a poor business investment. PERIOD.

  2. The Reg Fan says

    Shawn, if my comments are too personal. I’ll change it

  3. A Bowl Fan says

    Is it coincidental that Mr Demuzzio and the owners of the Speedbowl utilize the same law firm. i was hopeful that this process would move forward. Hopefully Mr Bemer is in it for the long haul. Maybe Waterford could end up with a nice incinerater on the property

  4. He does have the right to fight for his money, but I think something stinks here, same law firm as T.E. Hmmmm, maybe trying to make sure there’s no 2015 it seems, there’s a snake in the grass and I know the two that are most likely behind it

  5. I hate to say it, But say good bye to the bowl. The lawyers who bought property next door have been waiting for the chance to close the speedway and that’s what is going to happen. A group of lawyers are worst than the mob! Look at Washington. They take our memories so be happy with that and move on!

  6. Rocco Ronzoni says

    If you had a quarter million tied up and had two choices, namely watch it evaporate to zero OR appeal the judge’s decision and try to recover some of it, which would you choose? Appealing likely costs DeMuzzio very little as he most likely is only paying his attorney a set percentage of what he gets back plus some small fees. I don’t blame the guy for trying to get some of his money back when he has every legal right to do so…

  7. Expecting 110% Return on an investment in a foreclosure is anything but realistic, or even reasonable……..

  8. 140 grand of interest.are u kidding me.what the heck kind of return was pizzaman expecting.this is way too funny.who promised this return Donald and daffy duck investments.

  9. darealgoodfella says

    This deal gets stinkier and stinkier. DeMuzzo’s attorney probably requires a set hourly fee, or retainer, since the possibility of recovery is slim to none. I wouldn’t work this as an attorney for a percentage. And if DeMuzzo is concerned about his loss, typical attorney percentages would leave him with diddly-squat from his original risk.

    Mr. Bemer should file a motion for a reduction in auction price with the court to cover any costs he may incur due to these delays. He may be carrying a note, escrow, or other paper, incurring charges as time goes by.

  10. former scale guy Bob says

    Hate to repeat myself from one of the first articles but you never know who’s sleeping with who on this deal, or how big the orgy bed is. Lots of snakes in the grasses that will bite. I hope Mr.Bemer does not end up screwed here.

  11. A Bowl Fan, and others
    There is no connection whatsoever between the law firms or any sort of representation for Mr. Eames and Mr. DeMuzzio. To state that they have the same attorney or attorneys from the same firm is 100 percent false. Leave the made up rumors to your Facebook pages please.

  12. lets end this says

    What I don’t understand is how anyone in this mess can collect interest on the money they invested. They should only get back what they put into it, nothing else! Maybe then all involved would be happy and we can get on with improvements

  13. Who are the lawyers that bought land next door? First I’ve heard of this.

  14. i tend to think that Ed DeMuzzio, is testing the waters at this point, he wants to see if anyone will take him serious enough to pony up some money to make him go away, by doing this he can feel the judge out to see where he is at. while leaving the door open to an appeal if he thinks it will fly. I don’t believe that Ed DeMuzzio, cares one way or another at this point weather the track open’s or not, to him it’s all about the money, is he a smart bisness man or not remains to be seen, yes he has a right to try to recoupe his money, but at what cost and to who…is he hoping that any good or bad publicity about the track is going to bring the price up if it ends up being resold? or will it bring the price down as people who have read the writings on these blogs know to stay away as there will be a problem with the sale…

  15. Frankie Tree says

    Maybe there is a deal in place that’s why he didn’t file that appeal ? Let’s hope .

  16. I would like to jump on the bandwagon to invest some cash anywhere I get an interest rate of over 100% by investing. Mr. DeMuzzio has a right to get his original investment back but that rate of interest is way out of line. Sounds like he was represented by the law firm of Dewey, Cheatam and Howe. Not so much of a savvy business investor if he bit on the offer of that high interest rate. The old adage is in effect ” If it sounds to good to be true it isn’t

  17. Not Stan Greger says

    Do any of you hillbillies realize that at 8% interest your investment will give you a 100% return in seven years. It’s not an immediate return, it’s been years thus far. Look up the rule of 72 when you wake up today at noon.

  18. racefan088 says

    Former Scale Guy Bob is probably correct that there is very likely more going on behind the scenes and more snakes in the grass than what we are aware of by reading what has been written on this website and in the local newspapers websites.

    I personally do not believe the creditors actually got into their deal with Eames as an investment in the racetrack? Let’s face it they were all race fans or people involved with racing one way or another with the only exception being DeMuzzio. The only reason they were involved was to bail Eames out from failure and to keep the track alive. Sure they expected a return for their loans but I doubt any of them looked at it much more than a chance to do something good for the racing community as a whole. Talk about biting the hands that feed you, each one of these creditors has been taken to the cleaners by Eames while he chose to live the high-life of a world traveler instead of paying his obligations to the creditors. It no secret that the Arbitel foreclosure was not the only one currently in the court system involving the creditors.

    I could be wrong but if DeMuzzio really wanted to leverage his position of being able to file an appeal he would have done so before the deadline on Dec 4th. According to my brother in law who is an Atty it only would have cost the appellate court filing fee of $1500 to file the appeal plus a 2-3 hours in Atty time. At this point all DeMuzzio is doing is delaying the closing of the sale. Could it be there is more going on and maybe Demuzio has something in the works with Eames.

    Sit back and give some thought to who stands to benefit the most from the latest delay tactic. Surely it’s not Mr. Bemer who is losing precious time to prepare for 2015. Surely is not all the creditors in line behind Arbitel (Parkers, First H&M, Monahan) as the interest is eating away at all of their claims every day the sale is not closed. All DeMuzzio has done is choose a course of action that can possibly only benefit Eames in the event Mr. Bemer decides to walk away due to another delay.

    I have read online DeMuzzio has almost no chance of winning an appeal. Maybe he is banking on Mr. Bemer walking away and the court ordering another auction. Should that happen I really do not think another auction will bring enough to cover Demuzzio’s nut as every day he is falling farther behind the rest of the creditors. What person in their right mind would want to bid and win an auction of the Speedbowl and then have to deal with all the crap that goes along with trying to get the sale approved and closed. There is always going to be those not happy with the auction price and they will appeal the sale unless someone is willing to bid an amount that is well above its value. Don’t forget Eames can still file an appeal on his own and drag the closing out a year or so on his own.

    Ok getting back to who stands to benefit the most. In my opinion that would be the only person that technically still owns the property. As long as this deal is not closed, the property is still Eames’s to do whatever he wants to providing he has the resources (cash), and the court and the town allow him open the place. I guess we will all know sometime soon who may be hiding in the grass.

    With the above being said, Mr. Bemer please hang in there and don’t get discouraged we all appreciate your efforts. There is nothing written in stone that the track needs to be the first one to open in CT. From this fans point of view an opening in May would be just fine when the weather is most likely to be warmer and less wet.

  19. former scale guy Bob says

    Well stated racefan088

  20. darealgoodfella says

    If Bemer does not take possession soon, and Waterford is open this season under present ownership, Bemer can file a motion to vacate the sale, for reasons such as the facility being poorly maintained in the 2015 season, resulting in additional cost above the auction price and expected costs Bemer will have to incur when he takes ownership. That is probably built into the deal already. I know if I had a deal in place to buy a car for example, I wouldn’t want the car to be used at all. To think that I have a deal in place to buy a car in a year and it can continue to be used by the present owners is not a good arrangement. Especially given the state of repair and maintenance history of the facility.

  21. Not Stan Greger- Unless you are compounding the interest differently, when applying the simple rule of 72, you would be around 10.25% to achieve a 100% return in 7 years.
    Your example of 8% interest using the rule of 72 would be (72/8=9) 9 years, not the 7 you cite.
    For those of you who DID wake up at noon, and don’t understand, the rule of 72 is quite simple.
    This is a rule stating that in order to find the number of years required to double your money at a given interest rate, you divide the compound return into 72. The result is the approximate number of years that it will take for your investment to double.
    For example, if you want to know how long it will take to double your money at 12% interest, divide 12 into 72 and you get six years.
    Hopefully Mr. DeMuzzio will be able to extort….err, ummm, negotiate some money from Mr. Bemer, so that the sale can reach a final approval with no appeals, and racing can resume in 2015 under new ownership.
    Signed: Not a hillbilly, who also believes Mr. DeMuzzio and all creditors deserve something back.

  22. Read this status on Facebook a couple hours ago…”Haven’t really said too much about the Waterford Speedbowl situation, but I’ve heard tons of rumors. Any thoughts on IF there will be a season, and if so, will it be old management or new management and some thoughts on that topic? I know this is jumping the gun, since we are all still in banquet limbo, but I’m just curious as to where race car people stand on this.”

    Based on the comment thread below the Facebook post, it seemed that the “race car people” that commented were very timid in their answers. As a “race car person” involved with a few race teams, I have a different stance. GET RID OF THE OLD SHOES STINKING UP THE CLOSET! Why would any NEW owner in their right mind hire back the “old” management who was responsible for running the track into the ground? Bridges were burned by the “old” management, with competitors and former staff alike. Any competitor who would support racing at that track being ran by the guy who killed it, didn’t pay them, and then flaunted lavish vacations, homes, and vehicles, to name a few, needs to take a good look in the mirror and ask themselves, “Why?”
    New ownership warrants a new staff, as in MANAGEMENT staff that DOES NOT include the old owner running the place. Bring back the competitors who left because of him, bring back the sponsors who pulled out because of him, and bring back the fans who left because of him. Maybe the TRACK HISTORIAN will even consider a return with his Sid’s Vault crew. Don’t keep your voices quiet when asked about the old regime, speak up, your voices are the ones that need to be heard by the new ownership. It’s time for a change and a fresh beginning to restore the “bowl to it’s old glory.

  23. It is just downright painful to read all this high finance and backstage mystery. As a guy who was at the first race ever help at the Bowl and who still loves the place I just hope and pray that somebody with a sense of history will come forward and save the Speed Bowl from obliteration by greed!

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