Quarantine Chronicles Vol. 16: Let’s Go Racing, At Some Point, Maybe; Rambo Tank Hunter

Some semi-regular musings on racing and life in a COVID-19 Pandemic Quarantine World 

It’s the question everyone has. THE question. Over and over and over and over again, THE question. 

Phone calls, text messages, e-mails, Facebook Messenger, smoke signals, Pony Express, Morse Code, tin cans & string. You know name it, someone in the last six weeks has used it to reach out and ask when will short track racing return? 

And the answer? Good luck with that.

We can keep guessing and making predictions all day long. Just like the virus that has turned normalcy upside down, it’s all very confusing and there’s a lot of questions and very few answers. 

Do I think short track racing will happen in Connecticut in 2020?

I think it will. Understand this, that’s an opinion that is based on no information offered by any government officials or public health experts. The reality is government officials in Connecticut have given zero indication whatsoever on plans for any types of outdoor event businesses at this point. So that’s just a gut feeling on my part I guess. I’ll even go so far as to say I think short track racing with fans in the grandstands in Connecticut will happen by the end of July. 

So let’s just say there is racing going on by the last week of July in Connecticut, let’s play the game of what will that mean for the landscape of short tracks in Connecticut in 2020? 

Thompson Speedway had announced a six-event schedule for the 2020 season back in December. Who knew then that just might have been the perfect plan for 2020? It certainly gives Thompson a lot of wiggle room to play with to run their entire schedule should there end up being a short window of opportunity for events. Thus far Thompson has only had to postpone its Liquid Death Icebreaker weekend from its originally prepared schedule. As of now, the track has weekly racing series events scheduled for June 3 and July 8 in that end of July window mentioned.

Stafford Speedway has already seen some chunks lost to its 22-event schedule and will continue to see those bites taken out of their schedule every Friday that we move forward in shutdown. The track was set to open with the NAPA Spring Sizzler weekend April 25-26 and would have kicked off weekly Friday night events on May 1. If there is a a window for a season beginning in late July it would seem Stafford would have a host of possible options available to squeeze in as much as they can of a 2020 season. Could it be a shortened season running out the remainder of the current schedule? Or maybe Stafford’s traditional late September ending to the season gets extended a month deeper into the fall? Or could there be some additional events added to the schedule beyond Friday nights? 

The New London-Waterford Speedbowl is a wild card in the landscape right now. The track was closed for the entirety of the 2019 season and there were hopes to open with new grandstands in place for 2020. The two-section main grandstand was recently erected at the track, but there is still plenty of work remaining to finish the project, including the building of a track tower between the two new grandstand sections. Before the onset of COVID-19 global pandemic shutdowns New London-Waterford Speedbowl management was optimistic there would be racing at the facility in 2020. It’s hard to tell at this point where that hope lies. Multiple sources close to ownership have indicated that at this point there is no guarantee that track will reopen for 2020 even if state shutdown restrictions are lifted. 

The other question many have had is would there be any possibility that local short tracks would run without fans in the grandstands and possibly use online pay-per-view streaming of events. All indications from track operators locally indicate that would be a plan that would not be economically feasible. 

Come On Dude 

A demonstrator at a Subway shop in Raleigh, N.C. Saturday dubbed “Vanilla Isis” by many on social media (Photo: Travis Long/newsobserver.com)

We’ve all witnessed various types of protests against stay at home orders and business shutdowns around the country. And some have knotted these protests together as Second Amendment rights demonstrations. 

All good, part of living in this country, the right to peaceful protest and the right to bear arms. 

But it was hard not to laugh at the optics of a news story out of Raleigh, N.C. over the weekend reporting on a demonstration by a group calling themselves Blue Igloo. The group walked the streets of Raleigh with weapons displayed in what a spokesperson for the group described as “a gathering to support our God given freedoms as Americans.” 

“We want to put on a smile, shake some hands, and be friendly. An armed society is a polite society.” read a statement from the group.

At some point the group made their way into a Subway to grab some grub, which led to a photo of one of the group going viral. 

The man was pictured at the Subway counter with cash in hand and an anti-tank rocket launcher slung across his back. 

Now really, what does this have to do with the Second Amendment? See, that’s where things get weird. Standing up for your constitutional rights is one thing, strolling around town like you’re auditioning for Rambo Part 12 just seems to go again the spirit of it all.  

Seriously, this guy comes strapped for protest with an expended AT4 Anti-Tank rocket launcher on his back? It’s a one-time use weapon that becomes a collector’s item after being fired. Beyond military use, nowhere in America is an unfired AT4 legal to be possessed. Is he protesting that his right to carry movie props is being infringed upon? 

This is basically the equivalent of a bald guy going out wearing a wig down to his lower back to protest that he can’t get his hair cut at a barber shop? It just don’t make sense. 

And yes, I’ll admit it was hard not to chuckle with those on Twitter who dubbed Rambo Tank Hunter as “Vanilla Isis”. 

Binge Watching 

If True Crime is your genre then Unabomber: In His Own Words on Netflix is a must watch. 

Like most people I had a cursory understanding of the 17-year reign of terror of serial bomber Ted Kaczynski, but beyond knowing that he was one of the most infamous domestic terrorists this country has ever known, I didn’t know much more. 

Unabomber: In His Own Words, released earlier this year, certainly gave me a full education and understanding of Kaczynski the person, the crimes he committed and even a little understanding of why from the man himself through a jailhouse interview. 

Unabomber: In His Own Words painted a fantastically meticulous picture of the entire life of Kaczynski and brought to the table some amazing insight from the people that were closest to him. The four episode docu-series is a quick and compelling watch. 

Unabomber: In His Own Words earns four out of five snacks on our Quarantine Snacks Rankings.

Unabomber: In His Own Words

Eric Berndt celebrates victory in the SK Modified division May 11, 2019 at Stafford Speedway (Photo: Jim DuPont/RaceDayCT)

Digging Through The Archives 

It was a year ago this week that I got to write this little gem about Stafford Speedway SK Modified veteran Eric Berndt. 

Yup, about “The Kid”

Have I mentioned I miss racing?  

As always, stay safe everyone, keep positive, help your neighbors if you can and wash your damn hands. 

More Quarantine Chronicles  


  1. Vanilla Isis looks like he’s overcompensating.

  2. Quarantine Chronicles

    Interim Milestone Report

    USA total deaths exceeds 83,000

    Federal experts are warning about an outbreak in the fall. What we do now determines how bad it will get.

  3. I don’t care if it’s based on inside information. You just not taking racing off the table is kind of nice to read. The numbers for Ct are improving. In a couple months the mood and perspective may be completely different. No one knows how much nearly uniform behavioral changes affect the infection rates. One would hope the tracks would be working with the State government to develop responsible plans for holding events like the New Hampshire tracks have been on top of.
    It’s a free country. Plague wise that’s a problem. Clinton could have been president and we’d still be dealing with this. Maybe less, maybe not, no one knows. Guns at rallies is a thing now. The reason for the rally makes no difference. It’s ridiculous in my view but it’s just a fact now. The biggest weapon we have now is not a gun but social pressure to get as close to uniform compliance with safety guidelines as possible. Not to get into some kind of a gun debate with people that will never change their minds. Carry the gun if you have to and it’s legal but keep your distance and wear a mask.

  4. Quarantine Chronicles

    Daily Summary

    Today’s USA Results

    Why We Aren’t Racing

    New USA Cases: 22,802

    New USA Deaths: 1,630

    Total USA Pandemic Deaths: 83,425

    Total daily world deaths: 5,320

    The US had 30.6% of the daily world deaths total. The USA has about 4.3% of the world’s population.

    For the pandemic, the USA has 28.5% of the world deaths total.


    Stay safe, stay home, the life you save will be your own.

  5. So what’s racing look like for a fan if there is racing to be had and you go to one.
    I’ve got a couple ideas. The food is probably fine. People are buying take out all the time and it’s not a problem so eat up, especially if it’s hot. Don’t trust the food bring your own. Beverages, gotta have them. Especially a nice cold beer. Bring your own wipes is fine. No wipes, no problem make your own. Paper towels soaked in 190 proof grain alcohol. No problem swabbing down every inch of your beverage can or cup because the grain alcohol is.ingestible. In small quantities obviously. Paranoid in the rest room or porta potty. Pack Lysol. No Lysol no problem. Get a Preval spray unit, pop some grain alcohol in it and spray away. In fact you can spray your pizza with it if you want. Gotta wear a mask at the races. So what’s the problem? How is wearing a mask in an exhaust polluted, dusty environment ever a bad idea.
    The real risk is to all people putting on the show from the teams to the employees and vendors. If a show happens it’s the result of an enormous amount of planning and getting government approvals. It’s the result of infection rates being down for an extended period of time. So really, would going to watch armed what we know now with regard to safely really be such a big deal?

  6. For perspective…

    As much as Trump is trying to eliminate the social distancing safety requirements, and proclaim that he has prevailed over the coronavirus, he has the Fed preparing for a HUGE outbreak 😷 in the Fall. The Fed is still MASSIVELY acquiring and stockpiling PPE, ventilators, etc. and emergency hospitals are still being built in areas where outbreaks are expected.

    I want to see Mr. President live life as he is telling everyone else, and that means no frequent testing, stop having everyone around him tested, and stop all the extraordinary measures taken to protect him.

    Trump is trying to make like all is good so people will start spending money again and get the discretionary economy rolling again, but he also does not want to be held accountable for the deaths and harm from the pandemic. He’s got himself in a no-win, LOSE-LOSE situation, leading into an election season. The spin machine will be running at full throttle.

    Pay attention to the news folks. Real news, the facts.

  7. Terry Eames should be applauded for having the foresight to know covid-19 was coming and cutting the
    Thompson schedule and purses…genius, why didn’t we think of this?

  8. Quarantine Chronicles

    Interim Daily Report

    USA Pandemic Deaths exceed 84,000.

  9. Hope is a good thing and there is always hope that racing can resume some time before the cars have to run snow tires and the only reason to bring grain alcohol to the track is to drink it to keep warm. My thing is car shows. We do a bunch them with our car and often the crowds are comparable in size to a weekly race event .Some shows will draw 500 cars or more. I can tell you that around me, everything car show / cruise and swap meet related through July is cancelled and everything we normally attend from August to October is in a wait and see status. Can’t imagine local racing being any different. sadly ironic that they could race at Waterford as pay per view events right now since they wouldn’t need grand stands anyway after 2 plus years and all the red tape to finally get them built.

  10. Thankful for your optimistic view Shawn. Like most, I’d like nothing more than to see real racing, live racing. The sights, sounds and smells. You can’t get that on TV. The numbers seemed to have stabilized a bit, but still no downward trend, at least not here in Massachusetts. We are only in May, and could theoretically run until the snow flies. Personally, I won’t settle for anything less than live, at the track, racing.
    Hope everyone is safe sound and sane. Keep fighting the good fight. There is hope yet

  11. Quarantine Chronicles

    Why we aren’t racing.

    Interim Daily Report

    USA Pandemic Deaths exceed 85,000.

  12. Went by Waterford today and it looks like those shiny new stands are almost done. Looks great and certainly different.

  13. Quarantine Chronicles

    Why We Aren’t Racing

    Daily Summary

    New Cases: 21,712

    New Deaths: 1,772

    Total Pandemic USA deaths: 85,197

    Stay safe. The life you save will be your own.

  14. 1 death every 48 seconds. Is 1 death every 48 seconds worth a haircut? Is one death every 48 seconds worth that trip to the mall? Is 1DEATH EVERY 48 SECONDS worth a night of racing.
    My answer is NO, how about yours?

  15. All you need to do is look at South Korea. They thought they had this vurus under control, the result of rigorous testing, and social distancing.
    Then a dude walked into a bar, actually 5 bars, and now they have a second wave. I’m pretty certain based on news reports we will also get a second wave, in the fall. This will continue to affect racig for the rest of the year.
    Look at Illinois, they opened up, and cases spiked they are now #3 in the country for cases.

  16. We’ve passed 85000 deaths due to Coronavirus. Realistically that number is closer to 95000 deaths, when you consider DOA’s, and deaths classified as pneumonia, and heart attacks. “It is what it is”

  17. Here ya go DaDonkey. Shall I keep going on showing how you don’t know crap? This is just the tip of the iceberg, I can go on all day. Stick to what you know. And your stats are something anyone can do with a 30 second google search, it doesn’t imply wisdom.


  18. Late breaking news… Outbreak 😷 in the White House unveils that the tests used on White House personal can be wrong about half the time. Secret Service ranks have been attacked by the 🦠.

    So now we are not only deficient in the quantity of tests, we are woefully deficient in the QUALITY of the tests. And since the testing accuracy is so bad, not matter how many tests we do, it really doesn’t matter how many we do.

    So as you review the STATISTICS of the #TrumpPandemic, realize that theACTUAL case rate is far greater than INDICATED case rate due to the woeful inaccuracy of the tests.

    And you know that the “best” testing protocol is used with the White House Personnel.

    Brought to you by The Trump Administration. #TrumpPandemic.

    Remember all those raucous press briefings with all those executives from all the Pharma companies? Well, this is what is has achieved.

    Feeling lucky?

  19. Hey, knuckles, here you go:


    From a reputable source.

    Remember how I explained to you that supplements are advisable when people have poor diets?

    Please note that the medical community has moved away from vitamin supplements over the years and generally discourages the use of supplements, except in cases of other underlying illness that requires supplementation. The medical community is pushing a healthy diet without vitamin supplementing.

    Note that the tone is such that because of deficient diets that are lacking in vitamins, minerals, etc., it could be advisable to supplement, particularly for at-risk people such as the elderly, cardio, or pulmonary impaired. If we had good diets here in the USA, and there wasn’t so much food insecurity, this would not be the issue it is. Now keep in mind knuckles, that this vitamin supplementing is at best SECONDARY PROPHYLAXIS for people with poor diets, that is, it might help a person that gets infected by reducing the morbidity. It does not PREVENT INFECTION.

    My diet is already in line with the Mediterranean and DASH diet protocols, so I’m good. I often discuss vitamins with my doctor and they are against supplements, they recommend good diet, such as the Mediterranean and DASH diets. High in vegetables, varied vegetables, moderate on protein, low in carbs, good fats such as olive oil.

    Bottom line knuckles, social distancing is the only thing that works now. Everything else is noise. It is coming out that the testing protocols have horrible accuracies, so bad that using the word accuracy should not be used to describe the tests.

    Trillions of dollars handed out to corporations and Americans are still not any better off. The best and only thing to do after over two months on social isolation is to remain in social isolation. Bigly SAD!

  20. knuckles, Vitamin D deficiencies appear to make symptoms worse in covid patients. Making sure people have the recommended amount of Vitamin D is not some sort of magical cure or treatment for covid, it is merely overcoming a diet deficiency problem. A problem that also appears to make symptoms and conditions of covid worse. Our food supply has been supplemented with Vitamin D for decades, particularly milk and dairy products, to address this deficiency and the underlying poor diet.

    If our society did not have the food insecurity and resulting diet deficiencies, this condition and perceived relation with covid would not even exist.

  21. “It is what it is”

  22. Quarantine Chronicles

    Why We Aren’t Racing

    Interim Update

    USA Deaths now exceed 86,000

    Global deaths now exceed 300,000

    This is since Feb 28., two and a half months. And the world has been on some form of stay at home or shelter in place orders.

    The USA with about 4.3% of the world population has like 29% of the global death total. Now keep in mind that is what is known and reported as covid deaths. It is feared that many more people are dying and are unaccounted for in this total, around the world.

  23. The Durham Fair, Connecticut’s largest fair has been cancelled, it was scheduled for sometime in September.
    Still think there will be live racing with fans this season?

  24. RickyinMass says

    u duin good work dureel. ded bodies pile up. mor bodees more votes.

  25. Watch Wisconsin, the state supreme Court stuck down the governor’s stay at home order. Images show jam packed bars, restaurants and malls. Give it a few weeks and watch the numbers rise it’s stupid people like that, who will be the reason we’re not racing.

  26. knuckles Mahoney says

    Lets hope they cancel the Big E. The biggest scam perpetrated on the city of West Springfield.

  27. knuckles, if the Big E is cancelled, where will you get your giant smoked turkey leg?

  28. Quarantine Chronicles

    Daily Summary

    USA Summary

    New USA Cases: 27,246

    New USA Deaths: 1,715

    Total USA Deaths: 86,912

    Looks like we’ll end up over 88,000 tomorrow.

    Stay safe. The next life you save will be your own.

  29. Quarantine Chronicles

    Why We Aren’t Racing

    Interim Update

    USA Deaths now exceed 87,000

  30. The Bromfield antiques show in July has yet to be cancelled, so there is hope, although I think in the end it will be cancelled along with the September show. Just too many people, from too many places. And yes, Knuckles, the big E is a big scam.

  31. Quarantine Chronicles

    Why We Aren’t Racing

    Interim Update

    USA Deaths now exceed 88,000

  32. Quarantine Chronicles

    Why We Aren’t Racing

    The House has voted to allow remote voting due to the pandemic.

  33. Quarantine Chronicles

    Daily Summary

    USA Summary

    New USA Cases: 26,692

    New USA Deaths: 1,595

    Total USA Deaths: 88,507
    Stay safe. The next life you save will be your own.

  34. RickyinMass says

    gud for dureel. morr bodys mor votes. make this trump grave yard. dureel is reel amirkun.

  35. The House (a chamber of the United States Congress) just voted to allow remote voting. A first in history. Because of the pandemic.

    My wife’s employer, a huge multinational entity with hundreds of thousands of employees, that has been on work from home operations since March, just announced that operations will not resume from the company buildings, facilities and other locations until a vaccine is available. There might be some limited access once in a while as needed, but in general, people need to expect to work from home for a very long time.

    And the essential home centers and garden stores are jamming for all those stay at home projects.

  36. Quarantine Chronicles

    Why We Aren’t Racing

    Interim Update

    USA Deaths now exceed 89,000

  37. RickyinMass says

    new it. dureels wife as smart and importent as dureel. smart as dawter. mor ded body dureel.. more bodies mor voes. .dureel smart.

  38. Quarantine Chronicles

    Why We Aren’t Racing

    Daily Summary

    USA Summary

    New USA Cases: 23,488

    New USA Deaths: 1,218

    Total USA Deaths: 90,113

    Stay safe. The next life you save will be your own.

    The USA could be at 100,000 deaths next weekend.

  39. RickyinMass says

    dureel robpee ricky smart. sible stupid.. mor dead good for bydin. milion by elektion. bydin wins.

  40. Quarantine Chronicles

    Why We Aren’t Racing

    Daily Summary

    USA Summary

    New USA Cases: 19,891

    New USA Deaths: 865

    Total USA Deaths: 90,978

    Stay safe. The next life you save will be your own.

    The USA could be at 100,000 deaths next weekend.

  41. Quarantine Chronicles

    Why We Aren’t Racing

    Interim Update

    USA Deaths now exceed 91,000

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