Archive for the 'Nostalgia' Category

New Hampshire Auto Racing Pioneer “Blazing Buddy” Bardwell Passes

Gilsum, NH — New Hampshire auto racing pioneer “Blazing Buddy” Bardwell passed-away on Monday, March 30th, 2015, following a brief period of declining health. He was 90.

Inducted into the prestigious New England Auto Racing Hall of Fame in 2011, the World War II Navy veteran’s career behind the wheel spanned over six-decades.

Traveling widely and winning frequently, his early racing weekends began on Thursday nights at Keene, NH, and continued on Fridays at Rhythm Inn in MA, Saturdays at Claremont, NH, and Sundays in Brattleboro, VT.

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Speedbowl Champion Dick Dunn Passes

Dick Dunn , one of the Modified stars at New London-Waterford (CT) Speedbowl, passed away. The Middletown, CT driver won four consecutive championships from 1972-75. Dunn was part of the 50 Favorite Drivers class on July 29, 2000.

The No. 3 car was synonymous with car owner Peg Gaudreau. The car was named ‘Buddah’s Bullet’ in deference to her husband Al Gaudreau. Dunn was the last member of the combination. Al passed away in 2013. Peg battled ALS before her passing last year.

Dunn won 47 races at New London-Waterford. His 40 in the Modifieds rank fourth in the division, tied with Hall of Famer Bill Slater. His best season came in 1973 with nine wins. He led the division with 15 consecutive winning seasons from 1964-78. He had early success in 1959-60 with seven Bomber division wins.

I  spoke with historian Tom ‘Sid’ DiMaggio of SpeedbowlHistory.com.

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Fred Rosner Profile

If you hang around race tracks, drivers, owners and mechanics long enough, you are going to meet a variety of characters with a wide range of personalities. Some of them you’ll forget about tomorrow and others you’ll never forget. For me, one of the unforgettable would be an icon in the Northeast region of our racing world, Fred Rosner.

It seems Fred Rosner has been at the sport forever. Fred was born in Springfield, MA in 1935. When asked how he got started, Fred said “A neighbor of mine ran a car at Stafford Springs, and Century Stadium in Springfield, I guess I was 12 or 13 years old. That got me hooked and the first car I ever built was with Bill Gurney, we went to trade school together. When Riverside Park opened up we built a jalopy. We bought a 37 Ford in the morning and raced it that night.

Stan Disbrow drove it for us because we weren’t old enough to drive, I really never wanted to drive race cars, I just enjoyed building and working on them. I tried driving just a couple of times at Malta New York in a car I built for Ricky Massa and he didn’t have a driver. And one time at Riverside in a late-model 56 Ford for Walt Meisner, who owned Agawam Speed but I was never serious about driving.”

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Former W. Haven Driver George Zatulskis Passes at 75

GEORGE J. ZATULSKIS

1939 – 2015 | Obituary Condolences

GEORGE J. ZATULSKIS ObituaryZATULSKIS, GEORGE J. George J. Zatulskis, age 75, of Branford passed away peacefully on Thursday February 26, 2015, following a lengthy and heroic battle with cancer. He is survived by his loving wife Patricia Andersen Zatulskis, his children William (Marcia) Zatulskis of NY, Robert (Karen) Zatulskis of Newtown and Peter (Mary Milano) Zatulskis of East Haven, his grandchildren, Emily, Joshua, Grace and Andersen Joseph “A.J.”, his sister Barbara Oemcke of Unionville, his sister-in-law, Mary (Lucien) Labonte of FL and several nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his brother, Robert Zatulskis.
He was born in New Haven on June 10, 1939, son of the late Joseph and Viola Zatulskis. He was a retiree of Honeywell. George was an avid racing fan and was a long time car owner and racer at West Haven Speedway. He was also an accomplished card player. He loved nature and took special pride in his gardens especially his many azalea plants. Although a private man, he was always up as the center of any gathering. He was memorable to any and all who met him. He valued time with family above all.
All funeral services will be private in care of West Haven Funeral Home at the Green. Donations may be made in his name to CT Hospice, 100 Double Beach Rd., Branford, CT 06405. For online condolences please visit our website at: www.westhavenfuneral.com.
Sources: New Haven Register

Former Modified Car Owner Esther Lyon Passes Away

Esther L. Lyon March 27, 1934 – January 31, 2015

Woodstock-Esther L. Lyon, 80, died Saturday at home surrounded by her family. Wife of James Lyon, Sr., he died in 1998. Born in Putnam, daughter of the late George and Anna (Baker) Botham, Sr.

Esther was employed by the State of Connecticut for 31 years working at Mansfield Training School, UConn and retired from John Dempsey Regional Center. A member of the Abington Congregational Church and served as a deacon, trustee and past president of the Women’s Guild of the church. She enjoyed NASCAR, local car racing, go carts, crossword puzzles, birds, all wildlife and fed all that visited her backyard.

Survived by her sons James Lyon, Jr. of Woodstock, Roger Lyon of Thompson, grandsons Matthew Lyon of Ohio, Jordan Lyon of Thompson, daughter??? (in-law) Virginia Lyon of Ohio, several nieces, nephews and her dear friend Lois Molnar. She was predeceased by brother George Botham, Jr., and sister Mary Currier. She wishes to thank, Donny DiCostanzo and Russ Dowd for all their help and advice over the years, and Marion Leins and Carmel Currier.’

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New England Antique Racers (NEAR) Set Busy 2015 Agenda

The New England Antique Racers (NEAR) have secured several event dates as part of a busy 2015 agenda. First is the Frank Maratta Auto Show and Racearama to be held February 28th – March 1st at the Eastern States Exposition Center located at 1305 Memorial Avenue, West Springfield, MA. More details may be found at www.fmautoshow.com   

Next-up, New England Auto Racing Hall of Fame member Billy Greco hosts a NEAR Racing Party on Saturday evening March 28th at the Polish American Club located at 194 West Spring Street in West Haven, CT. The event starts at 5:00. With previous editions having been very-successful, it remains a must-attend affair for New England race fans.

NEAR running events are slated for Monadnock and White Mountain Speedways in New Hampshire, Massachusetts’ Seekonk Speedway, Bear Ridge, Devils Bowl, and Thunder Road in Vermont, Beech Ridge in Maine, and Connecticut’s Waterford Speedbowl.  

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Multi-time United Stock Car Racing Club Champion, Tommy Sutcliffe Passes

(January 31, 2015)– We received the unfortunate news today that multi-time United Stock Car Racing Club champion Tommy Sutcliffe has passed-away in Florida. Arrangements are incomplete at this time. Our sincere condolences are offered to Tommy’s family and many friends on this sad occasion.

The following short glimpse of Tommy’s career is from the Wednesday, July 18, 2012 edition of Dave Dykes’ Racing Through Time at www.davedykesracingthroughtime.com “One of the real chargers when Harvey Tattersall’s once influential UNITED ruled the New England Modified roost rather than NASCAR, Tommy Sutcliffe enjoyed a long-reign at the front of the pack. Twice a champion at Connecticut’s late West Haven Speedway, he was a top competitor all over our region for decades winning a boatload of features. This one captures the guy affectionately nicknamed “Suitcase Sutcliffe” when he was a part of the weekly starting field at Connecticut’s “New London-Waterford” Speedbowl of the early 1960s.”

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Berggren Named to Maine Motorsports HOF

The Maine Motorsports Hall of Fame has announced that on April 4, 2015, Dick Berggren, President of the Racing History Preservation Group (RHPG) that is the parent company of the North East Motor Sports Museum, will be inducted.

Dick will be one of six inductees who have influenced motorsports in Maine. He made his mark on the sport in his #80 Super Modified at Beech Ridge Motor Speedway in the mid-1970s and raced Modifieds there in the early 1980s. As editor of Stock Car Racing Magazine and later his own Dick Berggren’s Speedway Illustrated, he put Maine motorsports on the national stage with his stories about Beech Ridge, the Oxford 250 and Maine racing personalities. In total, only 80 other significant Maine racing figures have been inductee into the Maine Motorsports Hall of Fame.

In addition to his time behind the wheel of a racecar and writing about motorsports, he became best known for reporting from pit road at NASCAR tracks all over the United States. In his long storied career, Dick could be found on some of the biggest TV networks including CBS, ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, TNT, Speed and Fox Sports just to name a few. Never to shy away from a story, he was ready with the microphone and the ever important questions that the TV audience wanted to know the answer to.
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Former Driver & Owner Don Flynn Passes

Donald P. Flynn, a longtime resident of Suffield and devoted husband of Frances, passed away Thursday Morning, November 27th, after an extended series of illnesses. Born in Hartford and raised in Bloomfield, he was the second of four children of the late Paul and MarieAntoinette Flynn. Don was a truly self-made man, admired by his friends, feared by his adversaries, and respected by everyone, he built and owned a number of businesses beginning with Standard Auto Body, but was most well-known for his time owning and operating Bradley Air Parking in Windsor Locks, CT and later Executive Parking in Suffield.

Don was a man of many interests but his lifelong passion was cars which he collected, restored and raced for almost his entire life. Don had a significant racing career that ranged from short track modified racing throughout the northeast to major tracks through the Southeast; his home is still filled with trophies from many wins and championships both as a driver and later an owner. Don restored countless vintage cars and was always starting a new project with his loyal friends and former pit crew, especially Danny and Lindo and had a wide interest in collector cars ranging from Hot Rods and Sportscars to Vintage Race Cars. Don spent some of his best years after racing at his homes in Florida, Westbook, CT and Woodstock Vermont, enjoying many years there with friends and family. Don was a born worker, a perfectionist and always needed to keep busy. Although he enjoyed “vacationing” it was almost always a series of extensive projects that kept him busy wherever he was located, especially operating heavy equipment at his Vermont home. Don’s life cannot be summed up easily in a few paragraphs because he was truly larger than life to his family, friends and almost any one that knew him. Weather it was basketball, golf, boxing or taking up skiing in his late 60’s, throughout his life, Don was extremely competitive, and always up for a new challenge.

Don is survived by his loving and devoted wife of 34 years, Frances who was inseparable from him; six sons, Donny, Timothy and wife Angela, Peter and wife Lynn, David and wife Vanessa, and Dallas and Betsy; and his cherished daughter Annette who was by his side every day until his death, and her husband Jeff; sisters, Andrea and Maureen; grandchildren Erika, Alex, Jeff, Sam, Molly, Lucy, Gary, Shawn and Laura, and recently has been enjoying time with his special new Grandchild Deegan who will miss his Pa very much. Don was predeceased by his first wife, Bernadette, his daughter Jeannie, brother Patrick and sister Joan. Special thanks to Don’s trusted long time doctor, Dr. Stephen Yuan and more recently Dr. Sadaf Khorosani. Funeral Services will be Tuesday, December 2, at 9AM from The Heritage Funeral Home, 1240 Mountain Road, West Suffield. Followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at Sacred Heart Church at 10AM. Burial will follow in St. Joseph Cemetery, Poquonock. Friends may call at the funeral home on Monday, December 1 from 5-8PM. Memorial donations may be made to the Suffield Volunteer Ambulance, P.O. Box 642, Suffield, CT 06078. For on-line condolences please visit: www.SuffieldFuneralHome.com
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Lee Allard Passes Away at 76

August 6, 1938 – November 8, 2014

Lee Allard, 76, formerly of Hudson, New Hampshire took his last checkered flag when he lost his battle to cancer on November 8th 2014 surrounded by his wife and children at his home in Satellite Beach, Florida.

Born in Lowell, Massachusetts, what Lee accomplished in his lifetime would fill a book. He served in the United States Air Force, captained commercial charter and fishing boats, held an instrument-rated private pilot’s license, flew his own airplanes and maintained a lasting interest in all things aviation but it was auto racing, specifically Supermodifieds, that was his continuing passion. As a driver, Lee raced to many feature wins during the Class A, cut-down era and later was a successful car owner, campaigning NASCAR Modifieds and Supermodifieds across the northeast. Whether it was driving, owning, or managing, racing provided lifelong enjoyment and friendships that endured until his passing.

Lee was a successful general contractor in New Hampshire and at its peak, Lee Allard Paving employed over one hundred people; many of those employees and others in the construction community became lifetime friends.

Read the guestbook

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Damp Forecast Moves Plainville Stadium Reunion to this Sunday, October 12th

(EAST BERLIN, CT) Due to a forecast calling for heavy rains on Saturday, organizers of this weekend’s Annual Plainville Stadium Reunion have opted to move the event to this Sunday, October 12th.

Always a can’t-miss affair for New England race fans, the event runs from 10 – 3 at the Berlin Fairgrounds located at 430 Beckley Road, East Berlin, Connecticut. 

Included on the day’s agenda is a full schedule of Go Kart competition on New England’s only WKA Dirt Master track. The appearance of several vintage race cars along with a display of classic & custom autos adds to the day’s festivities. Also featured will be several memorabilia exhibits highlighting the colorful history of Joe Tinty’s much-missed Connecticut ¼-miler.  

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NEAR Hall of Fame Honors Bones Bourcier

Mark “Bones” Bourcier will receive the Charlie Mitchell/Jack Ratta Memorial Award at the New England Auto Racers Hall of Fame Banquet Sunday, Nov. 16 at Maneeley’s Banquet Hall in South Windsor, CT.

Bourcier, a native of Southington, CT and currently an Editor At Large for Speedway Illustrated Magazine, joins an impressive list of honorees. Drivers Mike Rowe, Deke Astle, Jim Martell, the late Fred Schulz, Ron Wyckoff, the late Pappy Forsyth and Fred Borden, car builder Dave Tourigny, historian R.A. Silvia and sports car pioneer the late Briggs Cunningham will be inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Ticket information and order forms can be found at the New England Antique Racers website (www.near1.org).

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Danbury Racearena Reunion Sunday

The annual SNYRA Danbury Racearena reunion will be Sunday September 21, 2014 from 11am-4pm. The Danbury PAL Building is located at 35 Hayestown Road, Danbury, CT 06811.

Sources: Nicholas Teto, YankeeRacer.com

Former Plainville Driver Jim Acker Passes at 77

James W. Acker, 77, of Plymouth, husband of Winnie (Kobryn) Acker passed away Tuesday, Sept. 16, 2014, at Bristol Hospital.

Jim was born June 10, 1937, in Tarrytown, N.Y. He was the son of the late Lester and Dorothy (Hunt) Acker and has been a resident of Plymouth most of his life. Before his retirement he was employed as a truck driver. Jim was a devoted husband to his wife of 53 years, Winnie. Together they shared the joy of raising their three loving children, Lee, Terri and Jim. Jim’s greatest joy in life were his grandchildren and great-grandchildren. In addition to his family Jim loved his home at the Cape.

Cape Cod was the family’s second home where many cherished memories were shared with family and friends. Jim was a longtime car enthusiast. He was one of the original members of Drag-N- Run Car Club of Bristol. He passed his love of auto racing and classic cars onto his sons, son-in-law and grandsons. His love of classic things carried over to antiques. He and Winnie spent many happy times hunting for treasures at flea markets and tag sales. He was also a member of the Coast Guard Aux. and High Riders Snowmobile Club.

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Danbury Announcer Paul Baker Passes at 94

With great sadness we announce the passing of Paul V. Baker of Southbury, (formerly New Fairfield, and Ridgefield), age 94, on Saturday, September 13, 2014. Paul was a loving husband for 52 years to Mary Jane (Nash) Baker, and father to daughter Paula Jean Baker-Nitzan of Glastonbury, and son, Joseph Baker of Austin, TX. Paul cherished his three grandchildren, Sadie Baker-Nitzan, Anna and Katherine Baker.

Paul was predeceased by his parents Joseph and Anna (Genga) Baldaserini, brother Primo and sister, Gina. He is survived by a brother, Gino Baldaserini of Ridgefield, and several nieces and nephews.

Paul was a World War II and Korean War veteran, serving in the Army Air Corp and U.S. Air Force.

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Westboro Driver Jim Ryan Passes at 70

BOURNE ”’ James “Jim” Edward Ryan, 70, died Friday, August 8, 2014 as a result of declining health over the last several years.

He leaves his loving wife, Carol Ryan; his son, Shawn Ryan and his wife, Tara; his daughter, Amy Sanborn and her husband, Geordie; his stepson Johnny Pomfred Jr.; his stepdaughter Lori Dewar and her husband, Jamie; along with nine grandchildren. He is predeceased by his son, Timothy James Ryan who passed away in 2013. He will be missed as a husband, father, grandfather and friend.

Jim was born and raised in Northborough, son of the late Edward and Agnes Ryan and has since lived in Bourne for almost 20 years with his wife Carol.

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NEAR Announces 2014 Hall of Fame Class

Drivers Deke Astle, Jim Martel, Mike Rowe, Fred Schulz, Ron Wyckoff, drag racing icon Bob Tasca, historian R.A. Silvia and car builder/mechanic Dave Tourigny make up the New England Auto Racing Hall of Fame’s class of 2014.

They, along with the still to be announced pioneer class, will be inducted at NEAR’s 16th Hall of Fame banquet  Sunday, Nov. 16th, at The Lodge at Maneeley’s  in South Windsor, CT.

Banquet ticket information will be announced shortly and will be posted on the New England’s Antique Racers’ website (NEAR1.org) in the near future.

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10th Annual Norwood Arena/New England Dragway South Reunions A Big Success

NORWOOD, MA — The recently held 10th Annual Norwood Arena/New England Dragway South Reunions at Bezema Motors on US Rt. 1 in Norwood, MA was a major success. The annual event drew the largest crowd ever of race drivers, race car owners, classic cars and race cars along with motorcycles as well as several collectible vendors. Trophies for top 12 vehicles as well as dash plaques were awarded to the owners.

Among the oval track drivers and car owners that turned out included; Daryl Stampfl of Norwood, Henry Stampfl of Plainville, Denny Stampfl of Foxborough, Bill Singersen of Norwood, Ed Gendreau of Medfield, Bill Statham of Sharon, Jack Lane, Jeff Horn of Ashland, Jack Malone of Needham, Joe Brady of Stoughton, Leo Cleary of Hanover. Also, 1970 Daytona 500 winner Pete Hamilton of Newton, George Savary of Westwood, Joe Kourafas of Randolph, Don McCollough of Walpole, Pete Desjardins of Wrentham, Jerry Capozzolli of Stoughton and multiple NASCAR Modified champion Bugs Stevens of Rehoboth as well as Jim Callahan of Medfield.

On the drag racing side, Ray Heliger of Little Compton, RI showed up with his King and Marshall AA Fuel Dragster as did multi-faceted Tom Dunn of Wrentham. Dunn was a drag racing star in the early days of drag racing before he turned to oval track action and built potent Modified machines piloted by Leo Cleary. Dunn also arranged to have one of his early model dragsters brought to the event. Also present was Al Sergini of Canton who worked his way up through the drag racing ranks up to the top of the sport with his Brute Force Funny car. Sergini won his share of NHRA Nationals during his career.

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Gig Stephens Passes at 87

Leonard ‘Gig’ Stephens of North Reading, Mass., passed away on May 19 at age 87.

He made 12 USAC Champ Car/Gold Crown Series (IndyCar) starts from 1959 to 1972 at Langhorne, Milwaukee and Trenton. His best career finish was sixth in 1967 at Trenton in the #71 Atamian Ford for Karl Hall (Halibrand/Offy).

He raced in the Midgets from the 1940s to the 1960s. He won at Seekonk Speedway in 1949 in a UCOA sanctioned event and at Norwood Arena in 1951. He had six ARDC Midget wins from 1955 to 1960 at Hatfield, Wall, Trenton, Freeport, Danbury and Williams Grove. He won a NEMA Midget race at Catamount in 1965 in the Bahre Offy.

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Hillsgrove Race Track

Thanks to racing historian R.A. Silvia for pointing this out to me this afternoon.

The Hillsgrove village in Warwick is best known for the T.F. Green Airport now. When the airport was in its infancy seven decades ago, a race track was still visible south of the airport.

The Hillsgrove track was mentioned to Silvia years ago as the site of motorcycle and auto racing in the early 1900s. Other than maps, aerial photos and a rare article, hopes seemed slim to verify the existence of racing. 

Until now! A recent ebay auction featured a trophy from an Iowa collector. The 1906 motorcycle race trophy declared: “First Prize/Five Mile State Championship/Presented by A.W. Harris Oil Company/Motorcycle Race Held by/Providence Motorcycle Club/Hills Grove/Sept. 22 1906/Won by F.E. Domina/Time 7 Min and 30 2/5 Sec”. 

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10th Annual Norwood Arena/New England Dragway South Reunions Presented by Bezema Motors Set for Sunday June 1

Norwood, MA — Bezema Motors on US Route 1, the AutoMile in Norwood, MA, is pleased to host the Norwood Arena/New England Dragway South Reunions for the tenth year in a row. For the past decade on the first Sunday in June, the Bezema family has hosted this event for the well known Norwood Arena/New England Dragway South.

The Bezema family will once again serve lunch to attendees courtesy of Norwood’s newest restaurant, Boston’s Baddest Burgers and Sandwich Co.

This year’s celebration will be another opportunity to meet legendary competitors who raced at the long-shuttered racing venue. New this year will be trophies for the top three classes for oval race cars, drag racing cars, classic cars and motorcycles. Attendees will be able to to share their memorabilia, programs, pictures and autographs. They will also get the opportunity to take photos of race cars, hot rods, classics and motorcycles featured at this event. It’ll also be a chance to get autographs for those picture and programs that are unsigned.

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Zipadelli Visiting Berlin for Summer Knights

Berlin native Scott Zipadelli will be in attendance for the Summer Knights Car Show and Swap Meet in Berlin on April 27.

“There should be about 400 to 600 hot rods there,” Zipadelli said. “They are raising money for an 18- month-old girl (Daniela Ciriello), who has a rare blood disease (that) lives in the area. So it’s really cool to be able to go home and help the Summer Knights with this wonderful event. Anytime you can go back home and help a needy family is a good thing. It should be a lot of fun for a great cause.”

Zipadelli has been a Nationwide Series crew chief since 2007 for JTG Racing, Braun Racing and RAB Racing. He has worked with a variety of drivers including Kelly Bires, Jason Leffler and Kenny Wallace.

“The business is always moving and changing so it seems like every few years things change,” Zipadelli said. “I was stuck in a rut so it was time for me to leave the team I was with in 2012 and start over so when TSM (Turner Scott Motorsports) approached and we talked for some time and then finally worked out a deal.”

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Dan Gaudiosi Passes at 88

Daniel Daniel ” Butch ” Gaudiosi
(February 9, 1926 – April 8, 2014)

U.S. Veteran
OAKVILLE

Daniel Gaudiosi
Beloved Husband & Father

Mr. Daniel “ Butch “ Gaudiosi, 88 of Oakville, passed away peacefully, Tuesday, April 08, 2014 at his home surrounded by his loving family. He was the husband of Carol (McLean) Gaudiosi.

Dan was born in Waterbury on February 9, 1926, son of the late Donato and Angelina ( Grosso ) Gaudiosi. He was a veteran of the U.S.Navy, having served his country honorably during WWII. He worked for the Town of Wolcott as a master mechanic for over 10 years until his retirement. “Little Dan” Gaudiosi raced at the former West Haven Speedway in Connecticut, he was certainly one of the track’s best ever. He claimed the 1957, 60 & 64 championships. Dan remains one of only two driver’s to have claimed 3 titles during the tracks almost 2 decade long history of running the coupes. Dan was particularly good at another former oval track, the much missed Plainville Stadium.

He was very proud of his 1948 Harley Davidson, which he rode for over 60 years, enjoyed fishing and the outdoors, but his real love was spending time with his family.

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High Honors for Dykes

Dave Dykes, whose “Racing Through Time” website has become a Mecca for the growing number of auto racing nostalgia buffs, will be one of six John Wentworth Good Sport honorees at the Connecticut Sportswriters Alliance Gold Key Dinner Sunday, April 27 at the Aqua Turf Club in Southington, CT.

The award is named after long-time New Britain Herald Sports Editor John Wentworth. Each year the Alliance awards six people who have provided a service to the sporting public. “Racing Through Time” is one of New England’s most popular sites.

“A Labor of Love,” according to Dykes, it is the culmination of a lifetime of collecting historic auto racing photographs.

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Irene Venditti Passes at Age 94

On March 28th the world lost one of it’s heroes when Irene Venditti , 94, left the world of the living, passing away peacefully in her sleep.

She was born in Seekonk on August 21, 1919, the last surviving child of eight born to Joseph and Mary Mellen . She graduated from Hope High in Providence and married D. Anthony Venditti in 1938. She is survived by 3 of her 4 children, Adrienne, a registered nurse, Francis, a raceway director, & Annie, designer. Her younger son, Anthony tragically passed away in 1980. She is survived by 7 grand-children and 6 great-grand children.

Ice played an important part in Irene’s life. Her father farmed the ice at what is now called the Grist Mill, she met her husband while ice skating at Burr’s Pond in Seekonk and in the 1960’s they opened an outdoor ice rink, Iceland. Irene’s youngest daughter, Anne, became an accomplished competitive and professional figure skater, as a direct result of Irene’s endless dedication and support.

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Historic Festival 32 Gathers Big ‘Heads’ of Steam

Stirling Moss, Ralph Lauren’s Cars Coming to Lime Rock

LAKEVILLE, Conn. (March 28) – Organizers of Lime Rock Park’s Historic Festival 32, Friday, August 29 through Labor Day Monday, September 1, have announced that Sir Stirling Moss and wife Lady Susie are reprising their popular 2012 Festival visit and will be this year’s Honored Guests.

In addition, world renowned designer Ralph Lauren has accepted the Festival’s invitation to be its Honored Collector, following previous honorees Miles Collier, Laurence Auriana and Peter Sachs.

Festival Chairman Murray Smith confirmed that Lauren would show a small group of cars from his magnificent collection which will reflect his superlative automotive taste and provide a very rare opportunity for enthusiasts to appreciate some extremely special cars that are rarely, if ever, seen in public.

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Historic Night in Store on Victory Lane Radio

Tune-in Monday, March 24th at 7 pm for a night of stories, as over 20 of the best racers, past and present get together on the Victory Lane Radio Network.

Spencer, MA — Never has a night on the racing airwaves in New England meant so much for so many. Monday, March 24th at 7pm will bring some of the greatest racers the New England area has ever seen, together for the very first time.

This collection of racers have over 1000 feature wins and have amassed well over 100 track championships. Dirt or asphalt, it didn’t matter; winning was the only thing on the minds of these competitors.

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NEAR Hall of Fame Mobile Museum to Appear at Frank Marrata Auto Show

Springfield, MA — The New England Antique Auto Racers (NEAR) Hall of Fame Mobile Museum will be present at the Frank Marrata Auto & Race-A-Rama Show on the weekend of March 1st & 2nd. To be held at the Eastern States Better Living Center in Springfield, MA. the event runs from 10-9 on Saturday & 10 to 5 on Sunday.

The mobile museum features a visual history of the New England Auto Racers Hall of Fame. Instituted in 1998 and administered by NEAR, the HOF currently boasts over 100 inductees including notable names such as Richie Evans, Ron Bouchard, Bugs Stevens, Rene Charland, Pete Hamilton, Fred DeSarro, Ed Flemke, Sr. and Bill Slater.

Also featured within the museum are several rare memorabilia items representing decades of auto racing history throughout the region.

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Elliott Beveridge Passes at 72

Former Plainville Stadium Winner at was 72

February 18, 1942 – February 21, 2014 Plainville, Connecticut

Elliott Case Beveridge, 72, of New Britain, passed away surrounded by his family on Friday, February 21, 2014. 
Born in New Hampshire, he was the son of the late Raymond and Barbara (Case) Beveridge. A lifelong resident of Plainville, Elliott attended local schools, and was a well-known, talented mechanic and racing enthusiast since childhood. He spent many days racing at Plainville Stadium, recently attending their reunion where he was awarded for his expertise, was a member of the Lucas Oil Outlaws, who won this year’s championship where Elliott was awarded Mechanic of the Year, and has been a longtime member of the DMA-USAC and NEMA Midgets racing teams. In addition to racing, he had a love for the outdoors, taking frequent trips to Black Watch Farm in Vermont alongside his lifelong buddy, Frank Manafort, and was affiliated with the American Legion and Mickey’s AC. 

He is survived by his children, Ron and his wife, Geraldine of Bristol and Christine Szpunar and her husband, Stephen of Burlington; his brother, Bob; his sisters, Betsy, Charlotte, and Marcia; his grandchildren, Stephen, Joshua, Alexander and Carli; his girlfriend, Julia Waite and many nieces, nephew, and many friends, including Barry Jack, Billy Bergenty, and Don Moon. 

He was predeceased by his brothers, Doug, George, and Bruce. .

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USAC Champion Rollie Beale, 84

Toledo, OH — Rollie Beale, one of the most respected USAC drivers of all time, has passed away at the age of 84. The 1973 USAC National Sprint Car Champion was enshrined in the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame in 1996. His USAC career, which spanned 1965-1977, included 32 Sprint Car feature victories, 10th on the all-time list. Arguably, one of his biggest career wins came in the prestigious “Little 500″ at Anderson, Ind. in 1966. A competitor in USAC Silver Crown and National Championship (Indy car) wins as well, his best Indy car finish was a ninth in 1968 at Trenton, N.J. After retiring as a driver, he spent several years as the Chief Steward for USAC’s Silver Crown and National Sprint Car Series. In 1991 he was the winner of USAC’s Ross Hadley award for dedication to our sport. USAC extends its sincerest sympathies to his widow, Anna Mae, and all of his family and friends. Services are pending.

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