Ted Christopher Disqualified From Third Place In SK Mod Nationals Event At Speedbowl

Ted Christopher celebrates his eighth SK Modified victory of the season Saturday at the New London-Waterford Speedbowl on Sept. 19.

Ted Christopher celebrates his eighth SK Modified victory of the season Saturday at the New London-Waterford Speedbowl on Sept. 19.

A season of tremendous highs for Ted Christopher behind the wheel of an SK Modified at the New London-Waterford Speedbowl in 2015 has ended in a big low for the Plainville driver.

New London-Waterford Speedbowl general manager Shawn Monahan confirmed to RaceDayCT exclusively Wednesday that Christopher has been disqualified from his third place finish in Sunday’s 75-lap SK Modified Nationals event at the shoreline oval.

Monahan said Christopher failed post-race technical inspection because of an illegal head issue with the motor on his Doug DiPisa owned Prestige Motorsports entry and has been disqualified entirely from the event.

Though the ruling from Monahan and his tech staff will have a unique wrinkle to it. An independent motor will builder will examine the parts in question and offer an opinion to Monahan, which could mean reversing the penalty. Monahan emphasized that until he gets that opinion, Christopher is considered disqualified from the event.

Christopher claims the ruling was unfair because his motor had no issues with the go/no-go gauge used to check heads on Sunday.

Christopher said Sunday’s call in tech inspection was part of a season’s long worth of harassment against the team by head tech inspector Mark St. Hilaire, a former Late Model division regular at the track. The team was disqualified from a finish early this season for an illegal intake issue.

“The problem is [St. Hilaire],” Christopher said. “… He thinks now that he’s the king of tech. He’s been [coming down on us] all year with [stuff]. I can understand the intake. But the head deal, there’s a ball, that has to not go through.  So we passed the [expletive] ball tech but he doesn’t like the way it looked. I’m like ‘What the [expletive] is that? I don’t like the way you [expletive] look.’ So I don’t understand it. It passes the tech. But just because you think it doesn’t look right? You have two other motors there that are done by [Pettit Racing Engines], I have a different motor builder, they’re going to be different. They’re cast iron heads, they’re made this year or that year or this month or that month. They’re all different. The ball rule is like it doesn’t fall through. It’s got the right [expletive] cut to the valve and everything, but you don’t like the way it looked? Give me a [expletive] break, what the [expletive] does that mean? It passed all the [expletive] gauge rules and everything, but he doesn’t like the way it looks.

“We’ve had problems with him all year. There’s certain stuff that the guys do with their bodies there that we brought up in the beginning of the year that he has not addressed. … He says ‘We’re going to take care of it.’ Well the race season is over and you never changed anything. If you’re going to let this [expletive] go, what’s the deal? You’re going to [expletive] me for [expletive] things that you don’t like the way it looks, but you can visibly see that the bodies are all different at that place and not even close to the right rules, and you never change anything all year when we’ve brought it up many times. He doesn’t like us. We’ve been teaching this guy every week. Don’t act like you’re the big four star general. You’re the [expletive] ‘Paul Blart Mall Cop.’ That’s what he is.”

Monahan said track officials reserve the right to make visual assessment beyond the gauge.

“There is a ball which is used as a go/no go gauge, and his heads did pass that gauge,” Monahan said. “But to us there has been an obvious hand grinding or polishing done. And the rule states that you cannot do that to heads.

“With that said, because we have had situations with Ted in 2015, and Ted made it clear to me that he thinks we may be out to get him, I want him to know that we will treat him as fairly as any other competitor.”

In the vein, Monahan has decided to stand by the disqualification for now, but at the request of Christopher, will have the part examined by an independent motor builder set forth by NASCAR.

“I have complete faith in my tech staff,” Monahan said. “But I am willing to be a man and stand up and be wrong if that’s what it takes. But we don’t feel as though we’re wrong. We’re just putting additional proof behind it so that he knows that we’re not out to get him.”

Monahan said that he also will hold purse distribution for Christopher’s position until he receives the assessment from the independent motor builder.

Monahan said the timing of the event – that it was the final event of the season – and the fact that it was a non-points event, off the unique situation to be able to offer another wrinkle to the examination process.

“It is what it is,” Christopher said. “We have no choice. We’re at their mercy at this point.”


  1. Captain obvious says

    The dipisa bunch hasn’t won a race in many many many years. This year they knock it dead at the bowl out of the blue. Is this really a surprise to anyone? That car is the only one Ted has been running good in this year and he has the same crew chief there as he does at Stafford.

    It’s a shame they stole wins from HONEST hard working racers all year. Especially after they got caught with a big intake the first time.

    Cudos to the speedbowl for standing by their officials.

    I think everyone was surprised by the miracle of that bunch winning a race. At least now we know why.

  2. It sounds like Shawn is making an effort to verify the decision. That seems pretty fair.

  3. I Have An Idea says

    Good to see that there’s zero tolerance for cheaters. It’s not like the 13 crew can’t say they have been treated fairly as they got a free pass and 2nd DQ avoided (after their threat of lawsuit) when they got caught with illegal fuel after win #5. The SK rules were re-written on the topic of fuel later that week as documented here (see comments): https://racedayct.com/2015/08/ted-christopher-grabs-fifth-sk-modified-victory-of-2015-at-new-london-waterford-speedbowl/

  4. Doug DiPisa says

    I would like to alloborate some more on this article and all the issues that involve my team. Even though Ted has summed it up pretty much about getting our balls broken for most of the year, it’s time to call out the spades. I’ve been pretty humbled and professional about any ups and downs we have had throughout the season, being it in tech or on the track itself.

    It is not illegal, nor has been to have the resources or money to go out and buy 5 sets of any certain part to find out which is the best one to use and use them to gain an advantage. That is what racing is all about.

    Just like Ted says. We’ve been talking to tech non stop about issues with car body requirements and how there are quite a few that are illegal finishing in the top 3 week to week. After it was bought up these guys go around measuring cars. They walk up to my car, put a tape measure up to the 1/4 panel and say ” for the guys who are making the biggest stink, you should make sure your cars legal first ” Ummmm, there’s only one issue, were 3/16 low because there’s no driver sitting in the car. Amazing when they were told that they never came back to measure.

    Then you have cars with a clearly stated rule about shocks not being able to have a cost of $300.00. But then you have guys running shocks way over the maximum cost, but they get their little made up note from a shock retailer about how they peice it together and make up list price.

    Next we have a scenario just last week at Thompson. (Same tech guys). We’ve had our carburetor out and in tech God only knows how many times without any issue. We go to the World Series without changing anything but springs and gears.
    We go through tech there after finishing 4th and they decide to tech carbs there also. We are told, that there is something that they don’t like, and they didn’t want to say anything at the bowl because there were too many people around.

    Dealing with this is getting nothing but ridiculous. As for everything that has gone on this past weekend, we have decided to skip out on the North South shootout being our cylinder head was hijacked, and the only time we had to spend with our families was this week.
    I will not go down the road of rushing to put another motor together, scaling a car, and all the other logistics of getting my team down to North Carolina by Tuesday of next week. My family comes first, and there will be no-one that will ever change that.

    The list goes on but I really don’t have the time right now to go on. Oh, and if there’s any spelling errors, I’ll just nip it in the butt now. This is typed from my cell phone.

    Pissed off car owner

  5. be interesting to see in 20+ years of racing and dealing with Pete at ERC I’ve always know him to build reliable legal horsepower.

  6. Seems to be the inaugural year of the new speedbowl is coming to a bad end after such a great season. All these tech issues and Scott leaving is making me raise an eyebrow. If tech had a problem with TC call parts all year they should have done something earlier. Especially when he wasn’t even the fastest car last weekend. He had many Saturday nights when the car was faster than this past Sunday. Doesn’t make much sense that he would try and cheat on the last weekend and make the car slower??? I’m not a TC fan but still sounds fishy. I mean the guy has more wins than most and even at 58 he can still hang with just about anyone.

  7. No doubt everyone is bending the rules here and there but one has to wonder if the enforcement is selective.

  8. Yeah yeah. Been caught the most out of anyone this year, yet you do the most complaining about other people.

    Heads have been a big issue this year. I wonder if the same guy ported those that ported preece’s at the icebreaker.

    You know what, maybe you were wronged I mean they let Preece get away with it after all.

  9. You’re not going down south cause they have your head???? You just said you bought a stack of them to find the best ones. Its pathetic you could be that full of it.
    Caught for the 3rd time. What a joke.

  10. So it sounds like they cut you slack and let you go at the speedbowl with a bad carb all year too! Why would u admit to that? Maybe enough was enough.

  11. If the ball past threw then the heads are legal.even the best get caught sometimes.Brett Hearn in dirt got DQ 3 to 4 times this past year.TC don’t lisson to all these haters.remmber everyone hates a winner.

  12. and you all think Rocco running legal😂😂😂.ya right.

  13. Brzezinski fan says

    Most heads from Brzezinski look different. It’s to bad you lost the matching intake back in May. I’m sure you can get more for next year.

  14. Where I’m from the ball IS NOT supposed to pass through. That includes the Speedbowl. #acid #grinding #ported

  15. Know your racing says

    Captain obvious. He doesn’t have the same crew chief at Stafford. Funny. Know your facts

  16. Sharpie Fan says

    Not the first time St. Hillaire DQ’d a driver because “he didn’t like the way something looked” this year. What exactly violation does that fall under in the rule book?

  17. Deflate gate, now this. Talking about balls an awful lot lately. Maybe they did them a favor. So they don’t have to waste a trip down south only to get dq’d. The best line was “I don’t like the way you look” lol

  18. Steady Eddie Fan says

    wow when you run out of intelligent thinks to say ” Jeffery” you bring Keith Rocco into this what a joke. That’s why he pays all the tech guys so he can get away with everything at the speedbowl LMAO

  19. Doug DiPisa says

    These comments are great. I’ll be back tomorrow to put you no names in your place with facts, not fiction. I’ll look foward to re-upholstering your arm chairs. #ArmChairRacer

  20. “We passed the ball tech but he doesn’t like the way it looked. I’m like ‘What the [expletive] is that? I don’t like the way you [expletive] look.’”

    I literally laughed out loud when I read that!!!! I’m not a TC fan, but that quote is just [expletive]ing hilarious!

  21. Captain obvious says

    Know your racing. Pretty sure The Bear sets up the cars at both Tracks. It didn’t start the year like that, but it finished like that. Obviously you are the one who knows nothing.

  22. Doug Dipisa, you were an arm chair racer for 20 years. Winning a few races this doesn’t make you the best ever lol. Don’t forget you got caught cheating 3 times.

  23. Does anyone know why this rules infraction is not posted on the Speedbowl website under the heading “penalty box” like all of the other penalties were throughout the year?

  24. I am not a huge TC fan however, I enjoyed watching him “wax” the competition this year. Rules are black and white HOWEVER, no matter how good the rules are written there becomes a grey area. Any good racer, engine builder or chassis manufacturer dabbles in the grey, that is their job to gain and advantage over their competition and if they don’t they are not worth their existence.

    I do not subscribe to this “I don’t like the way it looks” crap (happened in tech one night with a carb however, the owner was told it was OK). So he did not like the way the carb looked even though it passed the go no go same with the head however, one time he tells the carb owner it is OK but he tells the head owner it is not OK. St. Hilaire has done this all year and his other one is “I don’t like the way it feels”. Then you get DQ’d and the next week and it is “I did what I was told to do”. Really? By who? And there is no politics at the WSB? Some things never change.

    I am happy that TC has requested a third party inspection by an “independent motor builder set forth by NASCAR”. It will be very interesting to see who that is. Can’t be anyone local such as Pettit, BTK, APE, ROBICO, Larrys, T/A etc. or anyone else in the North East as I am sure they would all like to get a look to see how they are getting beat. It will have to be south of the mason Dixon line. It’s about time someone challenged the tech staff and kudos to TC. Monahan has said he will allow it and reverse his decision if the tech staff was wrong. I guess we will see about that.

    It is almost impossible to manufacturer two parts absolutely identical and there will be always be an inconsistency somewhere in the widget. If it was not tampered with then no harm no foul.

    I will summarize it all this way. The one thing I will say about the tech staff is, they are consistently inconsistent which puts managements decisions, credibility and their ability to be fair and impartial in jeopardy. Just my opinion.

  25. Doug DiPisa says

    OK armchairs , you ready?

    Captain Obvious: First of all, The crew chief for the Stafford and Waterford car are totally different. As for the Intake the beginning of the year, just because it looks different then all the others does not mean its illegal. Case in point, the week the top 3 had to swap intakes. I was told that St Hillaire had an intake from when he had raced and that he was comparing all to that one. He admitted that all 3 had different tolerances and that I could pick the one I wanted being we had won the race, or have his supplied intake. I wanted the 88’s, but when I returned to the tech shack the only one left was the 06 of Gada’s. So I waled off with that one. Who knew we would come back a 10th faster then the whole field. Thanks Mark…

    So, I’m done with you..

    I have an idea: Were was there a free pass ? There was a contradiction in the rules for fuel. And as you say, that’s why it was re-written and clarified… That’s basically it. I didn’t run Sunoco because I have a deal with VP. From not paying for fuel to having to pay $150 a night for it is ludicrous for a track that has no dog in this one fuel monopolization. I know people that are in jail for this type of shakedowns, Its called racketeering.. You don’t own a car so you really wouldn’t know the logistics and costs of running one. We are now forced by a monopolization to run Sunoco brand, which really didn’t matter because we won again the following week with Sunoco.

    So, I’m done with you..

    Get Real: As for the complaints . Yes we complained because like Ted mentioned. We’ve been harassed non stop. So why not bring up what other people are doing in plain site and nothing is being addressed? I wont even waste anymore time with you because you really did not read what I wrote.

    So, I’m done with you.

    Really: You just need to re-read also. We are not going to the shootout to represent the Bowl being the logistics are not in the cards. You really have no clue in your comment of what it takes to do so, so I’ll put it where you can comprehend just a little bit more. I know its hard but I think sooner or later you’ll figure it out. First, to machine a new set of heads, get the engine up to the engine builder and get it dynoed and back at the end of the week, not too mention scaling and all other things. Then trying to leave by Tuesday, sorry ain’t happening. We do have families like I already posted, but I know you have that issue of comprehension. And please tell me about the 3rd DQ cause I cant seem to find it.

    So, I’m done with you.

    LOL: Cut us some slack with a bad carb? Where? Know your facts a little more before you comment. The carb is Teds. He unbolts it from his Stafford car every Friday and it gets carried in every Saturday to be bolted on the Waterford car. Its been around since 2003 with numerous wins and championships, and has went through every tech imaginable with NO issues..

    So I’m done with you..

    Confused : The article was written wrong. The ball did NOT go through..

    Again, Captain Obvious: Bear has set the car up once at the beginning of the year. All the setup and garage work has been done by myself, with consultation from the Bear throughout the season.. So don’t pat yourself on the back too hard..

    TobeyT: Tell me, what do you own? Oh that’s right, A keyboard.

    Man up with your real names instead of wimping it out behind a screen.. Ballz it up.

  26. Know your racing says

    Technically it wasn’t bear setting up the car at Stafford. It was bob

  27. Billy Parker says

    If there is one thing i love, it is watching Doug DiPisa give epic smackdowns with cold hard facts!!! Me personally i like watching Teddy race, always have. Teddys personality has even gotten tolerable over the last 10 years too. But i am definitely a Prestige Motorsports fan, and every time i see “The Big Ragu” rolling thru the pit gate, i know it will be a great race. Does anyone remember Frankenstein?? The car Teddy drove the last 2 years?? That was a completely home built, from the ground up car, chassis, suspension geometry, everything by Doug himself, and while it didn’t win a feature! that car was Competitive, every week… When was the last time a completely home built SK won?? 1996 i believe?? And this year Doug put together a simple Troyer, not the new md3 or whatever the heck they are, its just a basic Troyer, Just like the 88, and wouldn’t you know, the 13 starts winning, and why? Because they were cheating? Wrong they were dead equal with the 88, and it showed. 2 great drivers, 2 great teams, 2 equal cars. When the 88, and 13 would fly thru the field, and get to the front, and run 1st and 2nd, it became very difficult to pass each other because they are so equal, whoever made it to the lead first, usually stayed there. And now all the know it alls who cried the 88 was cheating, are the same crying the 13 is cheating…. it’s comical actually..

  28. Maybe TC will decide to stop racing at The Bowl, that should increase attendance.

  29. Technically he has not been DQ’d yet until the findings are returned from the third party inspection by an “independent motor builder set forth by NASCAR” so stand by.

  30. Humphry,
    Actually, the way Shawn Monahan explained it to me, he is disqualified as it stands right now. He is allowing for the examination by the third party and if said examination shows evidence that the determination by track officials was incorrect they will go about changing the penalty. Until then though, he is considered disqualified.

  31. speed kills says

    doug speaks the truth.. haters go home ..the techs got got personal at the beginning of the year and focused on this team. totally unprofesional .. ham and eggers telling a multiple track champ with hundreds of wins ,who is far superior in knowledge about engines and racing ..”I/we dont like how it looks”..this is laughable

  32. Thanks for the clarification Shawn.

  33. I have to give the track credit (if it is true) when the top 3 guys swapped intakes…. they also should do it with carbs every once in a while – keeps everyone honest. but i have to say if TC carries his carb to the track every week – there must me a reason.

  34. old man racer says

    If Ted is running the same carb as everyone else, and it is completely legal, why would he take it off of his car Friday and run it on another car Saturday? If it’s the same as the others, why wouldn’t he buy a second one? It would be a lot easier that way, and it would prove a point.(Unless it is not like the others.)

  35. Doug about how much does it cost to feed the bear ? Is it close to what you pay for the Sunoco fuel ?

  36. All this talk about TC but hardly a peep about what happened with Rocco’s intake at the world series.

  37. Very good point rich, there was no article here about that, was there?

  38. Just when you thought TC was over the hill,with all this attention sounds like he is the hill.Pete’s the smart one he’s keeping his mouth shut

  39. We are talking about heads and intakes produced by reputable after markets here. The process and quality controls are very advanced and repeatability is very much the goal of these companies. These castings aren’t 50 years old and made in who knows what countries like the OEM’s. If they look different, they probably are, but not by accident. When you run well, I applaud the tracks for keeping you honest. Most other competitors deserve as much. Like the idea of an outside opinion. JMO.

  40. Still info/discussion re: the Rocco DQ at Thompson?!? Other than Matt Buckler announcing it on the track PA system, I am not aware of any other “publicity”.

  41. Wasn’t Rocco going for the championship at Thompson? Then he gets dq’d basically even before he runs the feature. To me that’s a huge story. All I heard was that they were warned in the past not to bring it back. Safe to say that’s why nobody could keep up with him at that double feature night.

  42. I believe the track said they didn’t like the way Rocco’s intake looked at Thompson(being a dodge) I don’t think he was dq’d, but was asked to change it. They couldn’t find another so didn’t run the race. They weren’t dq’d from the race,so I why would there be a story? When they couldn’t find another intake they didn’t run. They didn’t cry like Ted and Doug in this case.

  43. Matt Buckler announced that Rocco “didn’t pass tech inspection” after a heat race at Thompson. I believe Buckler also said that Rocco could start from the back in the feature (because of heat race DQ?) if he could find an acceptable intake. It seems strange that there hasn’t been an article in any racing publication which tells the story. Perhaps the Rocco story was “lost” in the hoopla re: the Coby/Preece/Pitkat Tour championship contest. However, a mention in the story about the Thompson SK feature would have made sense.

  44. Doug DiPisa says

    Rocco fan : You got that part of your post right. Your a fan, stick to it cause your no owner or crew member.
    First off this is no bash against Keith.
    But Keith’s intake was found to not look right and was told not to bring back during the racing year.
    They defied that request and put it back on for the last race. They checked intakes after the heat race and found he had the one tech did not like. He was DQ’d from the heat.
    Old man Ceravolo grabbed the intake and ran and said he was not coming back.
    So if you ask me, that’s a pretty good story, no ?

    And your done.

  45. Hey Doug after the races when you go to the all you can eat buffet how many laps does the bear do before you guys get kicked out

  46. Mod Tour Fan says

    Eric Berndt won the segment race in Ceravolo’s car, intake was found they were told not to bring it back, no penalty. They put the intake on Rocco’s car, he wins next two races, both times told not to bring intake back, no penalty. I assume as in baseball, three strikes you are out, the fourth time they tried to bring it did not work out for them. My question is, why give them 3 wins with an illegal intake before something is done? Can’t blame Ceravolo for bringing it back, after all got away with 3 wins why not try for 4. Perhaps, Scott Tapley could answer the question.

  47. Doug DiPisa says

    Jim: Where’s there an all you can eat buffet around there. Lol.
    Him and Ted are gone right after the race.
    I try to do the same being its a long ride home. But I would guess maybe 4 or 5 times.

  48. The illegal intake should have been taken by the track…. Thatvwayvit does not show up again

  49. Not only did Rocco win the next two races, he dominated the field. Pretty sure Waterford told them to not come back in the past and they didn’t. Since we’ll never get a full explanation of why they let that “illegal” car back to race one can only assume they didn’t want to kick out Rocco and a competitive car. Bad enough they were only getting around 15 cars so why would they want to make it 14? Wonder if it was a case of management going over Tapley’s head on a non call.

  50. real racer says

    Boy this guy Doug Dipisa Could be the most clueless car owner ever. Is it just me or does he make a constant fool of himself on the Daily with his responses. You just seem to make yourself sound silly.

  51. I’m with Billy P.. Dude’s 58. fifty frigging eight! If his intake is a little reworked, or heads reworked, that doesn’t change that there is a guy old enough to be some racers grandpa out there running competitively – able to pilot a car expertly at an “advanced” age. Gives the rest of us hope that we can hop back in the seat and maybe be competitive (bring back eddie reed jr). For that, I respect the guy, even if I haven’t always liked him. And DiPisa was competitive last year with an older driver and a home built chassis in this day and age of daddy’s money buying the latest and greatest off the shelf? Props to the 13,88, 27, and the rest of the guys who spend time in the shop and work their way into a competitive position.

    Great human interest stories for the off season!

  52. Doug DiPisa says

    Real Racer: Clueless, I loved that movie.
    Or in you case, I loVed THat moVie.

  53. And real racer, Doug DiPisa is done with you lol.

  54. Shawn –
    Any news re: final verdict on the TC/Prestige DQ?

  55. Rafter,
    Haven’t heard anything yet.

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