Speedbowl Notes: Rain Shortens Racing Card; SK Mod Feature Suspended

New London Waterford Speedbowl LogoWATERFORD – For the duration of the day at the New London-Waterford Speedbowl, radar watching being done by many.

Just before 10:30 p.m. the long expected weather arrived, bringing a halt to the night’s racing card.

The NASCAR Whelen All-American Series SK Modified feature was suspended with 18 laps remaining in the scheduled 35-lap feature with Diego Monahan of Quaker Hill leading and Ted Christopher of Plainville in second.

The race will be resumed on a date to be announced.

The scheduled 25-lap Limited Sportsman feature was also a victim of the rain.

Ray Christian III went the lead past Jason Palmer on a restart with six laps remaining and went on to win the 30-lap Late Model feature.

It was the first career Late Model win for Christian, of Uncasville.

Palmer, of Berlin, held on for second. Jeff Smith of Old Lyme was third.

Jordan Hadley of Quaker Hill led every lap on the way to victory in the 25-lap Mini Stock feature.

Christopher Ivory of Oakdale was second and Ian Brew of Wood River Junction, R.I. third.


  1. I like to complain about low car counts at tracks and when you only see 10 late models at the bowl, it doesn’t look good. But tonight’s race kinda shows you that even with only 10 cars, they can still put on one heck of a show. What a race. And when they resume the sk race, it is going to be interesting to see how TC and Diego handle each other, starting 1-2. Great to see 27 sk mods out there. Everyone knew in the off season that Waterford was going to be the place to be this season.

  2. Frank Rizzo says

    What happened to starting the tour race at 7pm sharp as advertised? The entire racing card should have been run before the rain came at 10:30. A lack of punctuality cost the fans what could have been a truly great night of racing.

  3. Brian Nye says

    People come to track to see racing not to watch a 45 minute driver intro when everyone in the stands knows rain is on the way.A little common sense goes a long way.Not to mention if you wanted to meet drivers they had an autograph session for just that.The racing was spectacular and should be the focus of management,not trying to put on a sprint cup type of driver introduction when rain is on the way.My guess is I’m not the only one who would have liked to see the SK race conclusion and the last race of the night instead of the long drawn out driver intro’s that most true racing fans could care less about.

  4. Justafan says

    After having updates given from people in attendance all i can say is i am so glad I decided to stay home and not waste my money on this event. This makes 2 weeks in a row of extremely bad job of running a race program. I dont know who is actually calling the shots there but come on get your stuff together. We finally have a owner that is doin what needs to be done in fixing the place up and the upgrades are being done very nicely but now you have all this bumble beep junk goin on with wasting time to keep people from leaving early and all it is accomplishing is making people not even want to go which truly sucks. 2 weeks into the season and with even a smidge of common sense and organized race day planing both events could have of should have been completed on time. I am rather surprised bu this as last year for the most part went very well. I don’t what has changed over the winter but it definitely is a move backwards. An hour to do the wmt intros? Really? Everyone knew rain was coming so just imagine if they started at 7:00 like they clearly advertised what would have happened. The show would have been completed on time. I love the place but man things are off to a very ugly start

  5. The idea they had for the driver intros was a nice idea, but not very well planned. Someone should have been prompting the drivers to go. One driver was standing there chatting with people when Matt Muckley was trying to figure out where he was. On the track outside of car introductions would have been better and quicker.

  6. Have to agree with most of the posts There was little common sense never mind an urgency to move things along driver intros should have eliminated based on the forecast. Fans n drivers alike wanted to get this show going. Then once the tour show started. The amount of time spent on yellows n removing wrecks was crazy. With like 25 to go they appear they should be going green. Then someone decides the 48 needs to be removed from infield. Two more laps of caution. Ridiculous. The racing itself was a very good show. Would have been nice and very possible to get it all in. Someone needs to make better decisions regarding moving things along with pending weather. Track looked great btw

  7. I agree with Frank and Brian, so much time was wasted before the race started. Very disorganized, I was sitting in turn 1, and it was like Matt Buckler was waiting to see the drivers walking toward the fence opening before he announced their names, but they were waiting to be announced before they started walking. Just Wade Cole alone must have taken 3 or 4 minutes.

    With rain in the forecast, why not just bring the cars out with the drivers strapped in, introduce them, recognize Jamie’s 600th start, national anthem, start engines and race?

  8. The only good decision was to run the tour first. No way they should of had the long drawn out inro. Rocco must be happy with the rain out. Now he can fix his car up good. But will he be laps down? The big question is how far will Diego run TC up.

  9. Ilias tha Illest says

    Rocco already had his car fixed before the rain came, and lost 1 lap in the process. But yes, this rain out will help Rocco immensely because the guys who showed up just for last night and don’t normally run at the Speedbowl will probably not return the night they finish the race, so he will gain a lot of extra positions even if he doesn’t make it back on the lead lap. Most likely he’ll end up in the top 10.

  10. Ilias tha Illest says

    Actually, now that I think back, Rocco lost about 14 laps. Still, he’ll be able to pass anyone who decides not show up to finish before the end of the race. Which probably means he’ll still finish around the top 10.

  11. Observer says

    Just to add a bit to most posts, this is what I see as some of the issues. (Before I start, a big thanks to Mr Bemer for keeping the track open)!!
    Agreed with the lengthy driver intros. Complete waste of time at that hour with weather approaching
    As usual way tooo many laps under caution. Takes forever to get restarted after every caution.
    The track crew is way too slow, at every crash scene. (As long as there are no injuries, hook’em and book)
    If the intros were cut back, and the yellow flag parade was cut back, the SK race would have been able to run to the end, no problem.
    As far as the show, (when it was running) the racing was very good. I keep Waterford on my list each year, as I think its the best track on the tour, for exciting 2 groove racing.
    Thanks again Mr Bemer. The shows will get better.
    A lot of severly wrecked racecars last night.
    One more thing, Donny Lia is a dangerous weapon whose better days are way behind him

  12. Joe Lajoie says

    I wanted to go really bad, but the weather radar didn’t look too promising.
    I just don’t get why, with the threat of bad weather coming, there isn’t some sense of urgency to get the whole RACING program in without all the fluff. I’m there to see RACING. Not autograph sessions, not driver intros, but RACING. Why can’t the powers to be understand that??

  13. Frankie tree says

    GM Shawn Monahan ?

    The tour race is run by NASCAR and they hold restarts the track has no control over the Tour race at all. The Driver intro would be great on a night w/o a questionable Weather in forecast. I think also the pace car doesn’t need to run out on every restart for the SK race. That kills a lot of time and most tracks give them a chance to line up right. Julie is in there ears and Webby tells them who fires first. Place looks greato. New Score board rocks and it very readable. Nice if it was on top of wall on back stretch but it’s awesome. Mr. Bemer is the reason we have a great race track . Ty again .

  14. Fast Eddie says

    The track improvements are great! Thanks Mr. Beemer and crew! Also, thank-you for running the tour race first with the weather threat. If there had to be driver intros (maybe a nascar requirement?), it would have been much quicker with drivers at their cars on the track, which would have helped the program. I wonder if they thought the weather would end up o.k. with the late sunshine, which I was also hoping for. I also agree with Rich; despite the low car count the late model race was really good. If they only ran them right after the tour with the sk mods out after that… I enjoy all the categories, including mini and street stocks, but I drive right past Seekonk (less trhan1/2 the ride for me) to see the modifieds.

  15. Hip Hop-oppotomus says

    NASCAR makes all the calls when it comes to the tour. Which means the track management has NO say so at all. From pre-race to victory lane, it is all controlled by NASCAR. The driver intro is all NASCAR’s decision. Don’t knock the track, they have nothing to do with it.

  16. Well that does make sense, hip hop. I wouldn’t think the people running the show at the speedbowl would make such a poor decision. NASCAR on the other hand, we shouldn’t expect anything less.

  17. Frank Rizzo says

    The track had no say about the start time or the driver introductions? Personally, I don’t by that excuse.
    Suppose I am wrong… Bowl management can easily get control over IT in the future by telling the WMT to pound sand next year and run another open competition event. The WMT needs Waterford far more than Waterford needs NASCAR…

  18. The crowds at Waterford are easily the biggest when the WMT is there. So far the other mod touring series don’t bring in as many people, yet.

  19. Frank Rizzo says

    Saturday night’s debacle will make me and my family avoid Waterford anytime there is a threat of a raindrop until they prove that they can manage it.

    Tour races are a special treat for meme. My kids enjoy them, but they better identify with the weekly racers they see far more often. I like it that way because Saturday night short track racing needs all the young fans it can find to ensure its longterm vitality. Boring these precious young fans with those driver introduction shenanigans, only to needlessly rain on their favorite race later in the night was a utterly selfish act. I’m sure many of the SK teams feel the same way too.

  20. Hip Hop-oppotomus says

    Well Frank, you don’t have to BUY it, but, it’s the truth. As far as telling the Tour to “pound sand”, that would be the only way to control it, however, it’s a little tough on the night of the race to make that statement. I thought we were discussing the actual topic of “blaming the track” for dragging it out, which was not the case.

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