You are here
Home > About Us

Compiling the Speedbowl's History

From August 2005 through March 2008, I personally spent over 1,500 hours of research to compile the statistics found in this site – primarily focusing on feature winners & track champions.  Other statistics compiled were point standings, time trial records and season-ending award recipients.   During the research, I realized there were certain exhibition events that have been around for a long time, such as enduros, demolition derbies & powder puff derbies and those stats were also compiled (although these event results are incomplete).  Additionally, when we started video work towards a documentary series on the track's history, we also started logging the tenure of track owners, operators, race directors, flagman, announcers, program publishers and others.   This data is all categorized by season in our Almanac, which we update at the end of every Speedbowl season.  We then update the Record Book accordingly with the new data.  Click here for more on the parameters we used to create the Record Book.

The statistics within our site were compiled from a variety of resources.  Here's a brief overview to show the primary resources by decade for the statistical data in the Almanac:

  • 1950's – The New London Day archives
  • 1960's – The New London Day archives; Speedbowl track programs
  • 1970's – The New London Day archives; Speedbowl track programs, Speedway Scene trade papers
  • 1980's – The New London Day archives; Speedbowl track programs, Speedway Scene trade papers
  • 1990's – The New London Day archives; Speedbowl track programs
  • 2000's – Speedbowl track programs, track press releases
  • 2010's – SpeedNet Direct archives, track press releases, 

Other print sources for information over the years include archives from the Norwich Bulletin, Hartford Courant, Hartford Times, New Haven Register, Westerly Sun, Norwalk Hour, Stock Car Racing Magazine, Speedway Illustrated, Area Auto Racing News,  ProSpeed Revue and Calvacade of Racing.  We've also referenced many websites to verify information including hometracks.nascar.com, near1.com, speedbowl.com, yankee-racer.com, racing-reference.com, speednetdirect.com and racedayct.com.  

Before my research, there were two books specifically about Speedbowl history.  This first is John Brouwer & Dave Shippee's A Racing History of the New London Waterford Speedbowl published in 1974.  It is worth noting that while there are stats in this book, our research varies from some of their info.  Regardless, it is a wonderful piece of history on the track's first 23 seasons.  Another great publication is Dave Dykes' 50 Year Pictorial History of the Waterford Speedbowl published in 2000.  Both of these are out of print, and we are honored to have original copies of both donated to us over the years.

We've been fortunate to have tons of photos, programs, scrapbooks & other memorabilia donated to our archives.  We've also built up a continually growing media archive including The Checkered Flag Announcer recordings, various incarnations of the 1990's Speedbowl recap show broadcast on local WTWS Channel 26 in New London, sports segments from WTNH and WFSB in Hartford, archives from The Speedway Line Report and Overdrive radio shows, plus the Waterford Speedbowl's own video archives from various videographers over the years.  Some of the generous people who've made contributions are:

  • John Brouwer
  • Pete Zanardi
  • Dave Dykes
  • Nicholas Teto
  • Howie Hodge
  • Bob & Betty Gada
  • the Korteweg family
  • Steve Kennedy
  • R.A. Silvia
  • Ric Mariscal
  • Tom Ormsby
  • Ken Meisenhelder
  • Bob Darling
  • Jen & Jeff Pearl
  • Scott Gregory
  • Gordon Rodgers
  • Josh Paradis
  • Frank Burdick
  • Bob Freeman
  • Floyd Chesbro
  • Joe Golas
  • the Cassidy Family
  • Bud Hartson
  • Tom Fox
  • Jesse Gleason
  • Pat Doherty
  • Bonnie Yerrington
  • Fran Lawlor
  • Chris Ignazio
  • Al Stone Jr
  • Bob Potter
  • Kyle Gero
  • Cliff Nelson
  • Steve Johnston
  • Gale Winter
  • Don Caddick
  • Al & Peg Gaudreau
  • Steve Cembruch
  • Ed Gertsch Jr

This project has always been a group effort and there are literally hundreds of people who have contributed in some way to provide us information, statistics, photos and/or memorabilia.  Without everyone's contributions, our efforts to preserve the Waterford Speedbowl would not be possible.  

Please contact us with any questions and we hope you enjoy this comprehensive trip down the Waterford Speedbowl's memory lane.

Tom "Sid" DiMaggio
Vault Productions

Top