Waterford, CT — Tom Fox, then 15, first climbed behind the controls of a Street Stock in 1978, beginning a decades-long association with Waterford Speedbowl. Winner of over 60 Speedbowl features, the second-generation racer returns to his old haunt in 2008 but in a different role. Rather than driving his familiar # 47 SK Modified, his contributions will be more in the “behind the scenes” mode.
“Right around the time of the annual Speedbowl Christmas party, Race Director Steve Harraka and I were discussing the open-slot left by our departing Chief Technical Inspector,” says Fox. “For the first time in many years my plans didn’t include racing, but I still had an interest in staying involved. It’s hard to completely pull-away from a sport you’ve been associated with for so long and I want be a part of the Speedbowl’s success. After all, I virtually grew-up there.”
Fox joins the Speedbowl staff as Chief Technical Inspector.
“We’re elated to have Tom,” says Harraka. “The timing was right, and it created an opportunity for him to contribute to our operation. Having been around the Speedbowl for so long, and seeing the sport from many vantage points, it should be a win-win situation for all of us. Tom brings a degree of respect and familiarity to the position as well as a vast knowledge of the technical side of our sport.”
With 61 “documented” victories, Fox is eighth on the all-time Speedbowl win list. He ranks third on the Late Model list with 45, winning two championships in the latter division. His win list includes the 2005 SK-150. He received “special recognition” at the recent Awards Banquet.
Fox quickly acknowledges the prior “tech team” did a commendable job and that he’s not out to make earth-shattering changes. “The prior technical team made a great effort, but there’s always room for improvement,” Fox says.
“My job is not to disqualify competitors, it’s actually just the opposite,” says Fox. “We’re all involved in racing to put on a show for our fans, and close-competition is what it’s all about. The object of my role is to assure that all the teams are competing on an equal footing, which in the end, results in better racing. Nothing would please me more than to see little, if anything, in the way of disqualifications based on technical infractions. That’s true job satisfaction in my view.”
Keeping up with things is a part of the job. The “nuts & bolts” side of racing is an ever-evolving affair,” he continues. “If rule-changes are made, we want to be sure that it’s in the best interest of all involved. Hopefully, our efforts will result in the Speedbowl furthering its reputation as a track where teams can compete knowing that the rulebook is being followed in their best interest.”
The Speedbowl kicks-off its 58th consecutive season with the Budweiser Modified Nationals on April 12th & 13th. See www.speedbowl.com for more information on the 2008 season.
Sources: Dave Dykes/Waterford Speedbowl PR.