Todd Owen Rolls To SK Modified Victory At New London-Waterford Speedbowl

Todd Owen celebrates victory in the SK Modified feature Saturday at the New London-Waterford Speedbowl (Photo: Mitch Bombard/TK Race Photos)

The reigning champ was back roaming victory lane Saturday at the New London-Waterford Speedbowl.

Todd Owen, the 2021 SK Modified champion at the Speedbowl, scored victory in the division’s 35-lap feature Saturday at the Speedbowl.

Andrew Molleur of Shelton was second and Dana DiMatteo of Farmington third.

It was the second SK Modified event of the season at the Speedbowl. Eric Berndt won the season opener.

Ray Christian III of Uncasville was victorious in the 50-lap Late Model feature.

Jason Palmer of Berlin was second and Jordan Hadley of Waterford third.

Michael McCarthy of North Oxford, Mass. topped the field in the 25-lap SK Light Modified feature.

Ryan Linehan (Open Street Stocks), Brian Norman (Street Stocks), John O’Sullivan III (Legends) and Ed Ryan Jr. (Trucks) were the other winners Saturday at the Speedbowl.


  1. Very poor car count for SK’s. Not even enough for heats. Its only May! What is happening?

  2. Sean- Is the race results page only for Stafford?

  3. Thanks Brandon says

    No tires and the price went up. Race Fuel price went way up. Can’t get spare parts and if you can the price tripled. Cost of diesel for haulers to get to track.

  4. Thanks Brandon,
    Stafford had 28 SK Modifieds on Friday, so your theory doesn’t really work.

  5. Longtimefan says

    The race was fantastic!! yes a few cars were not there, as a few drivers had tour commitments in other parts of the north east, including last night’s Jennerstown winner. the car count will always fluctuate, but the racing itself is still amazing, in every division. The cost increases affect everyone equally, from well funded teams, to low budget teams, but it is certainly not affecting the racing on the track. How about Todd Owen?? he has established himself as one of the greats of modified racing!

  6. That’s hard to see the reference to Brandon knowing it’s real meaning. Canada, Great Britain’s inflation rates are as high as are most of the developed world no matter. The Prez gets the credit or blame and right now everyone that pulls up to the pump is thinking Biden sucks. The world economy crashes in March 2020, we’re paying prices for fuel that are rock bottom, races being canceled I have to ask. Were those good times? Complete demand destruction. low prices and no races?
    Wasn’t it raining all day Saturday? Do you think that could influence any team from making the trek? In the end the total car count was somewhere like 70 plus. On a 3/8 mile what’s the problem?
    Don’t blame creepy Bruce, the weather, no beer or the moon it has to be Brandon right?
    Or some folks get more enjoyment from measuring Johnson’s then actually watching and making interesting comments about the racing they should have been watching but apparently didn’t.

  7. Thanks Brandon says

    Shawn Stafford has always been the 100,000 aire club. Waterford is a working man’s track.

  8. Doug,
    I really don’t want to let it turn into a political finger pointing,
    though I do understand exactly what the original poster was trying to do. Basically just trying to bait a racing scenario to instigate it into a political blame game dumpster fire.
    I made my point as succinctly as I could. Simply again, you can’t blame a painfully low car count at one track on the price of tires, the price of race fuel or the price/shortage of race parts when a track in the same region running the exact same type of cars is drawing nearly three times as many.

  9. Thanks Brandon,
    You could maybe say that for the Speedbowl’s lower divisions, but not the SK Modified division.

  10. SK and SKL running two tracks now a days is really too expensive. You need to have separate tire inventory. Limiting tires purchases is really a double edge sword – yes it may save money for some teams but not everyone. Lower $$ teams were able to buy take offs for 25% of the cost of a new tire – you were able to run three tracks without carrying 3 track tire inventory. In my opinion Stafford has the upper hand with Friday nights – most teams prefer having Sat and Sunday off for other things and if things don’t go well on Friday there is no more money to race Saturday.

  11. Steve,
    What you’re saying definitely makes sense, but it doesn’t fit with the current debate taking place.
    Mike Christopher Jr., who was racing at Jennerstown Saturday, represented the only team/driver not there Saturday who typically runs both Stafford and Thompson. The SK Modified teams that were regularly running both tracks last year were there Saturday. So again, you can’t blame the car count on teams choosing to run one track or another because of cost issues when the teams that typically have been doing that recently were there and the team that wasn’t there had nothing to do with the cost of racing and everything do with the fact that the driver was competing in a Whelen Modified Tour event in Pennsyvlania.
    You can go round and round in circles trying to find a way to divert blame from the track, and I understand people wanting to do that, but you can’t say that a sudden and very drastic drop in car count from one year to the next for one division is solely to be blamed on outside factors involving all of short track racing when a track 45 miles away running the exact same division has seen no drop in car count.

  12. I’m not sure what the average car count was last year but I did notice that 3 Gada’s were missing this week along with at least 4 others – Don’t know if there was an issue going on or maybe a family thing. No doubt racing weekly expenses have almost doubled is adding to less car counts. If you look at how many cars complete on a regular basis at any track through the whole season it averages around 12 – my guess it will be lower this year

  13. I think rising costs are having an effect on racing pretty much across the board. You can see it everywhere. This year Tri track is getting some of the lowest fields they have had in history. It’s still a good show but they aren’t running consi’s and no cars are getting sent home not making the feature. The new PASS supermodified series cancelled their first race scheduled at Oxford Plains Speedway citing expected low car count because teams couldn’t get parts for motors. Their second show was rained out/postponed which may have been a blessing as it was only a week or two later. The WOO late model series just cancelled 2 or 3 shows citing travel costs and tire availability issues. One of the shows cancelled was Orange county.NY this month. Lebanon Valley has been getting less cars this year compared to years past. Seekonk is getting 12 or 13 cars in their headlining pro stock division. Granite state got 12 cars at their opener, Oswego had their opener and had 13 supers for their main division. It’s bad out there right out the gate for some of these tracks and series. Usually, car counts start off strong and get weaker as the season progresses.

    Now Stafford hasn’t seen a meaningful dip in car counts in their open wheel divisions yet, which is great, but to say it is only a waterford issue doesn’t seem accurate when you look at all these other tracks/series. They all have lower car counts then they have had in the past. Waterford may have some issues but car counts seem to be down mostly everywhere this year. They are not alone with lower car counts this year. Its really a testament to Stafford that their car counts have remained relatively strong compared to other tracks series.. Kudos to Stafford.

    Racing is largely an entertainment discretionary spending activity. Most households when it comes down to either putting food on the table or going racing is going to choose the former. Gas is a necessity, you need to get to work fetch groceries haul the kiddos to practices. Gas is 50 percent higher than last year. Now, I am not going to point to whose fault it is but inflation is here, Every week I fill up my tank it seems like it costs more and more. Then when I go to the grocery store it costs more. Now its the weekend and I am chosing between driving to VT to see a race or go to a cookout across the street. That trip to VT would have cost me around 60 dollars in gas alone. The racing industry has really taken some punches over the past few years with Covid restrictions and now inflationary price increases. It’s amazing racing is still standing and doing as well as it is right now.

  14. Read a post about the modified history in Vermont from Rob A, this one from csg and some of the posts Bobf makes on CUP racing I’m thinking that some of the writing in this forum is starting to get down right must read.

    A few car count numbers comparing 2021 and 2022 at the Speedbowl for events during similar times in the season.


    5/8 (Bast Off) ———17——-12——18——17
    6/5(Fast 5)————–22—–13——-19——16


    5/22(Blast Off)———16——12——13——15

    Aside from the Streets where is the precipitous drop off? The SK’s last Saturday, a miserable day on the whole weather wise, were missing the two Gada’s previously mentioned and Tony Membrino who has moved back to the Stafford SK Lights part time.
    Economic conditions are well documented and will affect car count turn out. However at this point in time for the Speedbowl is it weather and the tracks last minute dump of rules (and schedule) that are causing the minimal car count differences year over year Or is it this big sweeping generality of inflation and the supply chain issues that conveniently take any responsibility out of the tracks hands and place it elsewhere?
    In the off season Stafford is meticulous in getting the rules out ASAP and can be annoying they are passing on so much information about teams and racing at the track continuously on social media. The Speedbowl had a continuing presence on social media but mostly inane posts that meticulously avoided plans and promotion for the 2022 the most glaring tardiness being the rules.
    So now the season is in full swing, aside from the Streets the track down a few cars here and there and the problem is what???????

  15. Any Speedbowl fans out there as ancient as me? Were you standing in turn one sometime around 1980 watching the races there? Inflation in 1979, 80 and 81 was 13, 12 and 9 percent respectively. 24 once beer, burger smothered with onions and Super Streets on street tires those were the days aye? My recollection is that even with the rickety stands the fans had to paint and that pathetic track with the dip in turn one and two that was more like off roading the car counts and crowds were pretty darned good the few times I’d drop in.

    OK so inflation and parts availability are an issue does that mean you can’t do something to respond to it?
    The Stafford vs Speedbowl comparison is moot in my view. One track pro active and 100% invested in the future of local short track racing. The other just treading water. Stafford on top of almost every aspect of their program with continuous capital improvement investments, promotion and schedule changes. The Speedbowl a banner job getting the track back in action years ago then all stop on the improvements. No rules when they are most needed to prepare, the schedule late and screwed up on arrival confusing everyone with the MMTTS misfire. That still isn’t straightened out as far as I can see is it?
    Stafford expanding their base with FloRacing, Waterford depending on the same loyal fans doing what they have done for most of their lives on Saturday night and expecting them to do it without a brew.
    Come on man, inflation might be a reality but good management has to at least try to counter act it with some kind of thinking outside the box. Waterford has done nothing. Done nothing because the track is owned by a miserable, creepy old guy spending too much time in court with not much of a future treading water taking the fan and competitor loyalties for granted. Stafford management young, vital, looking to the future and adapting fluidly to changing conditions supporting fans and competitors.
    We all love our home tracks. It’s just blows my mind that the ever suffering Speedbowl faithful always have their index fingers ready to point to anyone or any thing not related to the Speedbowl to account for failures of Speedbowl management.
    That track could be a extremely successful with great car counts, the NWMT and all kinds of special events under the right management. Could there be a better location? It just needs one thing and that one thing has absolutely nothing to do with the inflation rate.

  16. Rafter fan says

    Car counts at the Bowl have held up remarkably well given the track’s ownership/management issues. But, new(er) supply chain woes and inflation may be the straws that break the camel’s back. Only time will tell.

  17. I am not sure tracks can do much to reduce costs for race teams. This is largely Stafford specific as it’s the only local track I follow on FLO this year. Parts availability is completely out of their control. You could maybe open up the rule book to allow different more readily available replacement parts, but that is opening up the teams to increased costs if the new replacement part is perceived as a competitive advantage. So, I really don’t want to go down that road. Most tracks are already limiting tire purchases and keeping an inventory to ensure the rules are followed.

    I could see maybe eliminating heat races, which are largely anticlimactic, when everyone makes the field. They have no problem cancelling them when the tour types are on the schedule or rain is in the area. I don’t hear a bunch of complaining from fans about missing heats. Pre-qualify your top 20 in pts then run a consi for the rest of the field if there is over a full field in attendance. If you are starting everyone who shows up use practice times to position the rest of the field. Maybe tack on an extra 2, 3, or 5 laps to the feature so fans don’t feel cheated. Our racers go the “extra mile” for our fans. You are saving a few laps on tires and fuel. An added bonus you will save a heat cycle on tires which should make them last a little longer. You are probably reducing your time of show by a good 45 minutes to an hour. Something Stafford has struggled with at times over the years. Seems like a win all around. You could mandate a harder compound tire which lasts longer but I am not sure that is feasible this season with tire shortages and vendor mfg constraints, Perhaps, an idea to be implemented next season if these issues persist.

    Stafford already red flags races saving racers fuel when there is going to be a long yellow for clean-up. They are already cancelling early when the forecast looks bad at least most of the time. The one thing I was disappointed with Stafford is not making up the features from their last rain out. All the drivers spent money to get there for nothing, if you make up the features, they recoup some of the money spent. It just seems like a slap in the face when all those teams came out to support the track under threatening weather. Stafford obviously does a lot of things right; I am not sure this was one of them. You could run the make-up for each division on a separate night hopefully increasing attendance as fans perceive more racing for their buck. I know I would make an effort to see 2 SK features. I wonder what the drivers think of running double features, maybe they are against it. If that is the case, I will withdraw my criticism. You have to keep the racers happy at all costs as they are the ones footing the bills.

  18. CSG,
    It’s my understanding that Stafford is offering a $50 fuel credit to every team that was there last week and didn’t run a feature. I’d say that’s pretty generous all things considered.

  19. Fuel credit was not a bad idea . I don’t like the idea of eliminating heat races, this is where the driver gets to dial the car in closer to track conditions and they are doing what drivers like to do – RACE fans love to see racing as long as there are enough cars on the track. Should never have a heat race with less than 10 cars, the track should eliminate the first round of practice, open the gates one hour later so racers and crew members don’t have to miss so much work every Friday – there is a reason why grandstands open at 5 not at 3 when the paddock opens – to save money.

  20. Well praise be it does look like Stafford will get a good night weather wise finally. The Speedbowl is looking good to with no weather issues anticipated so lets see if that bumps the car counts up a bit. Bet it does.
    Racing Guys tonight at Claremont at 8 on Racing America and the MRS tomorrow at White Mountain at 6. Busy couple of days.
    Recalling Racer 101 I’m thinking the fuel credit will not be perceived as generous so much as a gesture and the least the track could do. However racers have long memories. The gesture added to a lot of other things Stafford offers the teams other tracks don’t will not likely be forgotten.
    What’s the tab for this gesture going to be $5000ish. Maybe Mike Joy eats a part of it, he owns the franchise doesn’t he? Gotta tell you it’s smart and money well spent.
    Zoom, zoom!

  21. The fuel credit is a nice gesture. I am sure the drivers appreciate it. Every little bit helps and it is certainly more than most tracks would offer. They postoined the racing guy 100 tour type modified event due to the threat of weather. It is rescheduled for August 12.

  22. Hillary 2024 says

    Wait, I thought car counts didn’t matter.

Leave a Reply

Copyright 2018 E-Media Sports

Website Designed by Thirty Marketing