Todd Owen Declared SK Modified Winner At New London-Waterford Speedbowl After Disqualification 

Todd Owen (Jim DuPont/RaceDayCT)

Todd Owen’s chase for a second consecutive SK Modified championship at the New London-Waterford Speedbowl gained some dramatic momentum away from the track this week. 

Owen finished second to Eric Berndt in Saturday’s 35-lap feature for the division. 

On Tuesday Speedbowl management announced that Berndt was being disqualified from the win due to an issue with his tires found in post race tech inspection. 

It took away Berndt’s division leading sixth victory of the season and gave Owen his now division leading sixth win of 2022 at the shoreline oval. 

Berndt was dropped to a 16th place finish in the final running order but was not awarded points for the race. 

Anthony Flannery of East Hampton was moved to second in the final running order and Stephen Kopcik of Newtown was moved to third. 

The penalty also dramatically shook up the SK Modified standings at the Speedbowl with two events remaining. Before the penalty Berndt was second in the SK Modified division standings, 12 points behind Owen. Following the penalty Berndt fell to fourth in the standings, 47 points behind Owen. Flannery now sits second in the SK Modified standings at the Speedbowl, 34 points behind Owen. Andrew Molleur is third in the standings, 40 points off the lead.

Owen is looking to go back-to-back seasons capturing SK Modified championships at both the Speedbowl and Stafford Speedway. He holds a 106-point lead over Marcello Rufrano in the SK Modified division standings at Stafford with three events remaining and could clinch the 2022 Friday at Stafford.


  1. Wow! Track must have had some rock solid evidence to do this.


    without specifics it leaves open so much rumor. are we talking soak/chemical treatment OR was it a tire not listed /shown as part of his inventory . does anyone feel the tire rationing effects safety and or can be advantageous to specific teams who are more conservative on a weekly basis? no finger pointing but I am sure everyone remembers the tire debacle with Thompson involving Owen who I believe was exonerated??.

  3. This sounds like a bear of a problem.

  4. I guess i am showing my age.. they call these cars “modified” so lets get back to the days when you can actually modify them…. rules should directly (not loosely) support safety only….

  5. High steaks 🥩 says

    Something sounds a little fishy about this especially given that vague nature of the violation referenced in the article.
    Im sure if there was more direct information provided that Shawn would have published it.
    If my intuition proves correct Berndt should ditch the Toilet Bowl.

  6. High Steaks,
    Still working on putting together something to be published with more info. What I can say is that the information I’ve garnered at this point indicates that Berndt’s team was found with a tire after the race which had been manipulated illegally. What I’ve been told is that the tire was found to have had an exterior identifying bar code glued to it that had come from another tire. More to come, maybe.

  7. Good post race tech …? More cars get caught cheating at the Bowl than any other CT track

  8. Sounds like a gummy bear of a problem now…

  9. Monkey Wrench says

    I guess Owen and Flannery got what they wanted,1 and 2 in points.With a lot of help from track.Congrats.Same thing happens at Stafford.

  10. 🍃 High Steaks 🥩 says

    I heard there was supposed to be a “meeting” this week where both sides would present their evidence. Not sure if this took place or not?
    I assume nothing new to report or we probably would have heard…

  11. High Steaks,
    It’s my understanding that a meeting took place Thursday and nothing was resolved and the meeting didn’t go very well. Track management doesn’t want to speak on the matter and Eric Berndt doesn’t want to speak on the matter. So that’s where it’s at unfortunately.

  12. OK then it’s been weeks, the issue seems to have faded and apparently no details made available to the public from the track.
    When Sean Foster came on board there was a hope the management might become a little more forthcoming with the media. There is obviously a mutual respect between Sean Foster and Shawn Courchesne with the coverage of the track seemingly expanding somewhat as the result. But really can Foster make any kind of difference and has anything changed? Foster told to clam up and he did that’s the way it works with a boss.
    The track is still owned by a horrible human being that will carry a grudge against RaceDayCt and all of Connecticut media for that matter to his grave. He does not share any of the customary motivations of owners seeking outreach, expansion of car counts and fan base with the goal of making more money. The goal is to maintain the status quo. Keep the existing fan base, one friendly and appreciative of his efforts happy and if it means sacrificing profitability or losing money that’s OK.
    SK’s, Late Models, SK Lights, Mini Stocks, Street Stocks, Super X, X Cars, Trucks, Legends, Bandalero’s. Add in Nema, Nema Lights, 350 Supers, Open Street Stocks and the 10 regular divisions get mixed and matched over two week days in the summer months. Mixed and matched for events it sounds good in theory. When executed it’s a mess. There’s only so many people with the desire and resources to race. Too many divisions spread over a couple week days leads to anemic car counts most of the time. Long term programs to build competitor loyalty like season long bonuses sketchy to non existent and no streaming revenue on the horizon to help fund them.
    Probably an unfair comparison but it’s the only one we have in state doing regular weekly shows so Stafford is the comparison. Karts Monday, a development program for the big cars on Friday. Not in competition at all on any level. 5 clearly defined divisions the track has backed for a long time with an iron will even when some have struggled. Constantly searching for bonuses that get funneled pretty evenly across divisions rules and a schedule they develop early and stick to with the same iron will. Consistency and loyalty filter down to the competitors and it shows in car counts across all divisions.
    The Speedbowl stepped out of the shadows briefly for and immensely successful MMTTS race. Even that was a mess resolved only at the 11th hour with emergency preparations necessary right up to the race to accommodate an expanded and new fan base. The success more a function of MMTTS then the tracks management ability.
    They may repeat it next year or other series may pop up in the schedule but nothing has fundamentally changed except the availability of beer has it?
    It can’t change until ownership changes. The one key that will unlock the full potential of the track.

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