Monaco Modified Tri-Track Series Return To Speedbowl Proving To Be Huge Happening On Multiple Fronts 

The chatter surrounding Tour Type Modified events around New England in 2022 has been number focused. 

Across the board in 2022 car counts have been generally lower than in recent years for many Tour Type Modified events in the region. 

Saturday the Monaco Modified Tri-Track Series returns to the New London-Waterford Speedbowl and that return is proving to be an unexpected windfall bucking of 2022 trends. 

Most expected Saturday’s Belltown Motors/Fowler’s Auto Wrecking 100 presented by CBYD 811 to be one of the biggest events at the Speedbowl in over five years. But go back a few months and it’s fair to say few would have expected it be one of the biggest Tour Type Modified events of 2022 in the Northeast. 

As of Friday afternoon the Monaco Modified Tri-Track Series entry list for the event included 46 cars, which is the largest car count for a Tour Type Modified event in the Northeast in 2022. 

“I am a little surprised at how big it has become,” Monaco Modified Tri-Track Series managing partner Ed Bennett said. “I thought it would be a good car count, but the whole thing has sort of taken on a life of its own. It’s great to see. I give credit to our staff and give a lot of credit to Mike and Dave Monaco, John Holland, Ben Dodge and my wife [Renee Dupuis] for making this event as big as it is. … This is really good for racing. The overall buzz that this event has created is so good for short track racing, which makes me happy.” 

Beyond the massive car count expected, track management is preparing for the biggest crowd at the track since 2016. 

The build up to the event has meant a wildly busy first few weeks on the job for Speedbowl general manager Sean Foster, who was named GM at the track on July 13. 

“I didn’t really have much for expectations for the event going in,” Foster said. “… I don’t know how this happened, but all of the sudden the numbers just started growing and growing. The big star power that has decided to compete with us just started getting astronomical. I knew it was a big event for the track to have coming here, but I didn’t expect this. 

“We’ve had a limited amount of time to prepare for it. I’m only three weeks in with management. Luckily, between the team I have here and the Monaco Modified Tri-Track Series team, plus a lot of volunteers coming to help out … we’ve had a lot of great people stepping up that want to see this event succeed and see this place succeed. We want to try to show everybody that we’re making progress, we’re making strides here with the support of [track owner Bruce Bemer]. A lot can be done where and we’re going to keep on going down this road.” 

Tom “Sid” DiMaggio, owner of Vault Productions and unofficial Speedbowl historian, said he’s expecting an energy at the track Saturday similar to huge events at the track like Funkmaster Flex Invitational in August 2004 or the return of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour in June 2012. 

“I’m expecting this to have the vibe of some of the biggest events that have happened at the Speedbowl in the last 20 years,” DiMaggio said. “I think the car count and the entry list reflects just how excited people are to still race at the Speedbowl, and that’s a good thing. … It’s a cool opportunity. It’s been a long time since we’ve had a day like this at the Speedbowl. I’m definitely looking forward to it.” 

Foster has been busy leading improvements at the track over the past three weeks in preparation. Crews have cleared areas of the property to increase parking. Track management has worked to remove old grandstands in turn one and turn four and have quickly created news picnic seating areas. Saturday’s event will feature new food vendors and the return of on-site beer sales. The last time beer was sold for events at the track was 2018. 

“It’s been fun, it’s been wild,” Foster said of the preparation for the event. “I’m not at the point of excitement really because I’m just so busy with the team here getting ready. We’ve been working on the getting field cleaned out for overflow parking. We’ve got a super cool trophy made up. We’ve got a great victory lane ceremony planned. We’re doing a lot of construction work here. Removal of old grandstands that were not being used. We’ve got a load of picnic tables here to take place of those old grandstands. We’ve got new vendors coming. We’ve got beer sales coming in. We’re trying to situate our current vendors who have been supportive of us. It’s just been non-stop getting ready. It’s wild.” 


  1. This is really great for everyone involved including the car owners and fans. Just wish it was not going to be so Hot. Hope they put up cooling tents

  2. “Across the board in 2022 car counts have been generally lower than in recent years for many Tour Type Modified events in the region.”

    I’m not so sure it’s that black and white. If we see 34 cars for the opening MMTTS race at Monadnock in 2021 and it dips to 23 this year it looks alarming. Looking into it further it gets a little more murky.

    At this point in time last year with the Monadnock, Star and Star races in the record books a total of 106 cars appeared at those three events.

    This year four MMTTS races in the books at Monadnock, Thunder Road, Seekonk and Star with 107 cars total participating. Add in the Speedbowl race tomorrow and the numbers look even better for 2022. Not on average but with more races teams showing the commitment to show up has to count for something.

    As of August 6th last year 9 races completed with a total of 236 cars participating.
    This year 9 races completed with a total of 231 cars competing. That’s a fractional car over 9 event not exactly alarming in any way.

    Stafford Races (Opens and NWMT races)

    For the CBYD, Twisted Tea and Bud Light opens, 77 cars total in 2021 vs 79 in 2022. With the Sizzler races added in be they the NWMT version in 2021 or Open in 2022 the count is 105 cars in 2021 versus 120 in 2022. The 2022 Sizzler arguably more special but the same number of races.

    The car counts for MMTTS races are surely down on average, 27 in 2022 vs 35 in 2021 but 2 more races to show up for as of tomorrow and 27 is a full field at a shorter track.
    Moreover if you consider just marquee events 2022 will have to get the nod so far. The Sizzler and Speedbowl events showing 41 and mid forties respectively vs only the Star SBM race last year reaching the 40 car threshold.
    That’s the cup half full version of car counts.

  3. Hillary 2024 says

    The trophy for this race is one of the coolest and unique I’ve seen.

  4. I Wanna Play says

    Went to open practice today. My god what someone with motivation and ability to work and do what ever it takes to make something better.
    Ladies and Gentlemen like you all to meet Shawn Foster.
    The place has never looked so good. Walls painted. New lines everywhere. Raked areas. Bags in Cans.
    Picnic Tables everywhere. Old nasty red stands GONE. 2 beer Carts.
    Can’t wait for tomorrow lots of campers and people smiling and happy.

  5. Longtimefan says

    If today’s practice is any indication, ALL divisions are going to be FAST… despite the heat, teams have found speed in their setups. it’s going to be GREAT racing in every division.

  6. Hillary 2024 says

    Stopped by today also. Place looks great. Awesome that the old bowl is having the biggest modified event around. Place is going to be packed. But no streaming though so Doug won’t believe anything he doesn’t see. This is so big that it has Dafella literally speechless.

  7. GARY C DAVIS says


    We’ve already been over this multiple times in multiple places. Long story short, there wasn’t a feasible deal to make a live stream happen.

  9. Stuart A Fearn says

    gary c davis- why don’t you go to the track and pay? just as valid a question as your own, don’t hate

  10. What is Dick Williams thinking now?

  11. Ron Silk had to withdraw… just the thought of running there made him sick.

  12. Hillary 2024 says

    Took longer than usual. But finally Dafella again reminds us of how lame he is.

  13. Hope Thompson is watching this, and realizing there is huge pent up demand building for modified racing right here in good ole’ Connecticut, and they reconsider their pullback from the oval and running modified events.

  14. wmass01013 says

    GEE Stu only hate i see is from you!, Who the hell are you to tell someone to go to the track and pay, maybe he cant for some reason All the WMT Tri Track and Open Mod races have been streamed so far this year so far. What nothing to hate NASCAR wise this week?

  15. wmass01013,
    Figured you were in a feisty mood after your first nonsensical comment.
    I think the point trying to be made here is that there are a lot of fans now who just take for granted the idea that every big event will be streamed somewhere. Yes, we’ve already gone over the fact that all the big Tour Type Modified events this year from the Whelen Modified Tour to the Monaco Modified Tri-Track Series to Stafford Open shows and Thompson Open shows have been live streamed on some platform this year. We’ve also gone over the fact in multiple places on why this event is not going to be streamed. And quite honestly, I can’t blame the track management or the Monaco Modified Tri-Track Series management for the decision they made to not stream the event. When Racing America is offering the track/series ZERO percent of the sales revenue on pay-per-view sales why on earth would you even think about doing that deal? I hear people say, “Well it would be good promotion for the track and series.” Really? So you have an event that is most likely going to sell out today. Now, it’s pretty hot today. So let’s say there was a stream of the event today with a pay-per-view cost that would have likely been in the same range of the $30 admission ticket. So what happens when you have a whole bunch of people who say “You know, it’s going to be hot, I’d rather sit by the pool all day and then just buy the pay-per-view later tonight rather than sitting in a steamy grandstand with a bunch of other overheated people.” So let’s say they’re going to get a crowd of 3500 there today. Those 3500, if they really want to see the event, they have to go there. Now if there was a stream of the event, you might have 500 of those people or more decide they don’t want to go, they’d rather watch the stream. Now, if the streaming partner was sharing revenue that wouldn’t be the worst thing to happen for the track/series. But when you’re going to lose 500 people who would have bought a ticket and 100 percent of the revenue you would have got from them because you’re letting someone else broadcast the product you’re trying to sell, I’d say it’s a pretty easy decision to opt out of streaming the event.

  16. Ah this reminds me of the good old days. Early 2020 as streaming was being introduced by the NWMT the argument raging. Live attending or viewing on line.
    Clearly I’m on the opposite side of the two heaviest hitters on this issue Mr. Courchesne and Stuart Fearn. There’s only one thing to do.
    Pop the top on a Hopstillo from Broad Brook Brewery, hunker down and wait for the storm to pass.
    Cheers boys!

  17. Stuart A Fearn says

    At least Doug has great taste in beer LO!
    Some people will never comprehend, like a track fav says “I can explain it to you but i can’t understand it to you.”
    Shawn or myself can explain it for the 50th time and the same dolts will then simply repeat “ya, but why don’t they stream it?” Falls under you can’t fix stupid.
    Other tracks and series turn off the mylaps feed for the feature as well. Forget video feed they don’t even do live lap time feed. its called business.

  18. Rafter fan says

    Ben Dodge is on the mic at the Bowl today, but not at Stafford last night?!?!?

  19. “I can teach, but I can’t make them understand” – unknown

    Stuart, Shawn… great explanations and discussion, but we must weigh the discussion of the introduction of streaming to our local short track scene with the fact that it happened when 😷 🦠 COVID 🦠 😷 was raging and gatherings, even outdoors, were limited, and even prohibited.

    That’s when and how streaming was introduced. I believe that if 😷 🦠 COVID 🦠 😷 never happened we would not have streaming of local short track racing. That said, it seems to be inevitable regardless of pandemics given the spread of Floracing. Let’s also realize that prior to 😷 🦠 COVID 🦠 😷 we discussed on these very forums the light crowds and the aging out of the loyal fan base. We need replacement fans. It is those very aged fans that were also at highest risk of 😷 🦠 COVID 🦠 😷 . Conditions were ripe, near perfect for the introduction and acceptance of streaming. Presto!!!! Along comes streaming to save the day!!!! The tracks, series, sanctioning bodies pretty much had to do it back then. Or so it seemed.

    But now, with 😷 🦠 COVID 🦠 😷 somewhat under control and risks far less, and folks going out more often, it is surprising that streaming is still being done. Crowds are still rather thin, far from sellouts. Just like the big leagues such as baseball and hockey use TV blackouts to force people to go to the games, I’m surprised streaming continues and has not been discontinued to get people back to going to the tracks. (except for Barcalounger lizards like Doug that don’t go to the tracks). Unless the business aspects are such that the tracks, series and sanctioning bodies are doing better with the streaming revenue than what they might do by getting those fans back to the track. Let’s be real… those already older, aging out fans that were at high risk when 😷 🦠 COVID 🦠 😷 started, are older and may not be too eager to resume travel to the tracks anymore.

    Our beloved sport needs replacement fans.

  20. Just to clarify my take is you both may be on the same side of the issue but other then that I don’t see any equivalency in expressing yourselves.
    Mr Courchesne erudite as usual. Maybe a little annoyed but still taking the time to do a full explanation complete with analogy. You Mr. Fearn mostly arrogance and insults.
    So much for trying to lighten the mood.

  21. Hillary 2024 says

    To use Dafella’s words. Dafella you idiot. Yeah maybe Thompson management should take note as to what Waterford is doing right. Pent up demand for modifieds that I’m sure Thompson was clueless about until Dafella mentioned it. Maybe. Just maybe Thompson ought to run some open modified events. You know, like once a month or something like that. Or well maybe next year Dafella. Maybe next year…..🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🐒🤡

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