Tuesday November 30, 2010

By Phil Smith                                                                                             

Despite the negative and derogatory remarks made by the management of the Waterford Speedbowl directed toward this writer the on going proceedings involving 1080 Hartford Road LLC are moving foreword. The United States Bankruptcy Court Hartford Division has set a date of 12/16/2010 for the hearing to review the motions made by Ted Parker's attorneys Paladino and Welsh, LLC, of Westbrook, CT. Among the items on the docket is a motion to convert the pending Chapter 11 plan to Chapter 7. The hearing will be held at 10:00am in the 7th floor Courtroom 715b in the Hartford, CT Courthouse.

Chapter 7 of the Title 11 of the United States Code (Bankruptcy Code) governs the process of liquidation under the bankruptcy laws of the United States. When a troubled business is badly in debt and unable to service that debt or pay its creditors, it may file (or be forced by its creditors to file) for bankruptcy in a federal court under Chapter 7. A Chapter 7 filing means that the business ceases operations unless continued by the Chapter 7 Trustee. A Chapter 7 Trustee is appointed almost immediately, with broad powers to examine the business's financial affairs. The Trustee generally sells all the assets and distributes the proceeds to the creditors.

In a Chapter 7 case, a corporation or partnership does not receive a bankruptcy discharge—instead, the entity is dissolved. Once all assets of the corporate or partnership debtor have been fully administered, the case is closed. The debts of the corporation or partnership theoretically continue to exist until applicable statutory periods of limitations expire.

The Debtor, 1080 Hartford Road LLC, has had Chapter 11 protection since October 30, 2009. Since that time the legal document filed by Paladino and Walsh, LLC states that there has been no apparent progress towards reorganization in the Debtors bankruptcy case and the Debtor has not proposed a plan of reorganization.

The bankruptcy petition was filed the day before a state ordered foreclosure by sale auction instituted by the first mortgage holders, Arbitell and Borrelli.

The only way in which a Debtor (1080 Hartford Road LLC) can reasonably "cure" his failure within a reasonable period of time is to actually perform his duties as Debtor in possession and resolve his chapter 11 case through the submission and confirmation of a plan or reorganization within a very brief period of time. If the Debtor can not or will not do so it has been submitted to the court that the case should be dismissed or converted to one under Chapter 7. Paladino and Welsh stated "The Debtor has wholly failed to report on the status of plan formation". In other words, the Debtor (1080 Hartford Road LLC) has failed to propose a plan and disclosure statement or otherwise move his bankruptcy case toward resolution.

If the court puts 1080 Hartford Road in Chapter 7 the property and assets of 1080 Hartford LLC will be liquidated.



The final racing program in the Northeast for 2010 took place this past weekend at the Wall Stadium in New Jersey. John Blewett, Sr. and Don Ling, members of longtime racing families, teamed up to stage the track’s 37th annual Turkey Derby Thanksgiving weekend.

The track’s 2010 season was abruptly ended in early September due to a conflict between the track’s ownership group and then-promoter Jim Morton. Future racing of any type appeared to be in jeopardy until Blewett and Ling got together with Timothy Shinn’s five-member owner group.

Despite bone chilling winds and cool temperatures fans and competitors rallied behind the Blewetts and the Lings as the Jersey shore speedway was packed to the brim for the Turkey Derby. There were 30 Tour Type Modifieds and 30 SK type Modifieds on hand.

Matt Hirschman, who set the fastest time for both the SK types and the Tour types, went pole to pole to win the SK type 100 lapper. Anthony Sesley finished second and was followed by Chris Okerson, Keith Rocco and Jeff Malave.
Jimmy Blewett won the Tour type Turkey Derby 150. Blewett was booed in victory lane because of his driving tactics. Matt Hirschman finished second and was followed by Tom Farrell III, Shaun Carrig and John Markovick. Twenty four cautions slowed the event which took a few minutes shy of two hours to run. Nine of the original 30 starters completed the 150 lap distance. Sixth through tenth were Ken Wolley Jr., Les Hinckley, Ryan Truex, Brian DeFebo, and Billy Weichert.

The Stafford Motor Speedway welcomed a guest list of nearly 500 people consisting of teams, drivers, sponsors, and employees on Friday night, November 19 at the La Renaissance Banquet Facility in East Windsor to officially honor Keith Rocco, Ryan Posocco, Matt Galko, Dan Flannery, and Tony Membrino, Jr. as the 2010 Stafford Motor Speedway NASCAR Whelen All-American Series track champions.

With Stafford Motor Speedway broadcasters Matt Buckler and Joe Coss serving as the Masters of Ceremony, the 41st annual Stafford Motor Speedway NASCAR Champions Awards Ceremony not only honored the five track champions, it also honored the top-20 points finishers from the SK Modified®, Late Model, SK Light, Limited Late Model, and DARE Stock divisions. Other awards that were presented during the evening's festivities were Most Popular Driver Awards, Most Improved Driver Awards, Reliable Welding & Speed Rookie of the Year awards, and the Craftsman Mechanic of the Year Award.

The race for the 2010 SK Modified® championship began and ended with Keith Rocco in victory lane. In between his season opening CARQUEST Tech-Net Spring Sizzler and CARQUEST Fall Final feature victories this season were 8 more feature wins to give Rocco a Stafford SK Modified® record 10 wins. In 20 starts this season, Rocco collected 16 top-5, and 19 top-10 finishes along with his 10 wins for an amazing average finish of 3.4, which allowed him to win the championship by a whopping 138-point margin over Woody Pitkat. Rocco also finished in 7th place in the Late Model points standings this season with one victory.

The 2010 Late Model championship chase saw Ryan Posocco complete the "Drive for Five" as he collected his record fifth Late Model track championship at Stafford. The points race was a tight race all season long between Posocco, Woody Pitkat, and Dillon Moltz, which ended up coming down to the last race with Posocco and Pitkat separated by only 6 points as Moltz faded from contention. Pitkat ended up winning the CARQUEST Fall Final feature event for his division leading 8th win of the season, but Posocco finished third, which was enough to give him the championship by the smallest of margins, 2 points. In addition to locking down his fifth track championship, it was also a season of milestones for Posocco at Stafford as he surpassed 40 career Late Model feature race and he reached 50 career victories at Stafford with 43 Late Model wins and 7 DARE Stock wins. Posocco posted 4 wins, 13 top-5 and 19 top-10 finishes 20 starts this season.
In the SK Light Modified division, a rookie driver claimed the championship for the second consecutive season. Matt Galko took over the points lead midway through the season and looked to be heading comfortably towards the championship. But Tommy Barrett, Jr. was in the middle of a white hot winning streak, winning 8 of 9 races, while Galko finished 13th or worse 3 times in four races leading up to the CARQUEST Fall Final, putting Galko 6 points behind Barrett for the final race of the season. But Barrett encountered trouble in the opening laps of the race while Galko went on to win the race and the track championship. Galko posted 4 wins, 13 top-5, and 16 top-10 finishes in 21 starts to win the championship by 32 points over Barrett.

One year after a flat tire eliminated him from championship contention, Dan Flannery returned strong to the Limited Late Model division and took the championship with a division leading 6 feature victories. Although Flannery led the division in wins, he had to contend with Dave Yardley, III as well as defending track champion Andrew Durand in the chase for the championship. Heading into the final race of the year, Flannery and Yardley were separated by only 6 points. But like Galko, Flannery won the final race to take the championship in grand style by 12 points over Yardley. Along with his 6 wins, Flannery also led the division with 15 top-5 and 19 top-10 finishes.
Just as the SK Light Modified division had a rookie driver win the championship for the second consecutive season, the DARE Stock division had the CARQUEST Tech-Net Spring Sizzler feature winner win the championship for the third consecutive season. Tony Membrino, Jr. matched the feat that was turned by Norm Sears in 2008 and Don Wood last year. Membrino enjoyed a remarkable season, finishing no lower than seventh place all year long and he took the championship by a 42 point margin over Jeff Jolly. Membrino posted 1 win, 16 top-5, and 21 top-10 finishes in 21 starts this sason.

Receiving awards for Most Improved Driver were Zach Sylvester in the SK Modified® division, Adam Gray in the Late Model division, Erica Santos in the SK Light division, and Michael Wray in the Limited Late Model division. The Most Improved Driver award is given to a driver who exhibits the greatest degree of improvement in on-track performance over the past season. Nominees are selected and voted upon by a committee of select Stafford Motor Speedway management and track officials.
The Reliable Welding & Speed Rookie of the Year awards were presented by Brad and Linda Hietala of Reliable Welding and Speed to Josh Sylvester from the SK Modified® division, Tim Fogg from the Late Model division, Matt Galko from the SK Light division, and Duane Provost from the Limited Late Model division. The awards will be worth a $700.00 bonus to Sylvester, and $500.00 bonuses to Fogg, Galko, and Provost from Reliable Welding and Speed. Each Rookie of the Year bonus will be paid out in $100.00 weekly increments to each driver as they attend events during the 2011 season.

The winners of the Most Popular Driver Awards were Woody Pitkat in the SK Modified® and Late Model divisions, Erica Santos from the SK Light division, Andrew Durand from the Limited Late Model division, and Cory Casagrande from the DARE Stock division. The Most Popular Driver Awards are voted on by the fans who attend Stafford Motor Speedway race events and fill out the ballots found weekly in the track's PitStopper Magazine.

The Craftsman Mechanic of the Year Award was awarded to Stephen Butova. Butova prepared and maintained Frank Ruocco's SK Modified® machine that visited CARQUEST Victory Lane 4 times this season, including the prestigious CARQUEST SK 150. The Craftsman Mechanic of the Year Award is voted on by Stafford crew members who possess a valid 2010 NASCAR License.

In TV land this weeks viewing begins on Tuesday evening at midnight on the Speed Channel with a re-showing of the June 24-26 World of Outlaws late model Firecracker 100 that was run at the Lernerville Speedway in Sarver, PA. At 6:00pm the action moves to the Versus Network for the Lucas Motorsport Hour. The Speed Channel has NASCAR Race Hub at 7:00pm. NASCAR Race Hub will also be seen at 7:00pm on Wednesday and Thursday. At 3:00am on Wednesday the Speed Channel will again show the Super Dirt Series Modified 200 that was run at the Syracuse Fairgrounds on October 10. On Friday evening, starting at 7:00pm, the Speed Channel will show highlights of the NASCAR Awards Ceremony for the Nationwide and Camping World Series that was held in Miami Beach, FL on Nov 22. Live coverage of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship Awards Ceremony in Las Vegas, NV follows at 9:00pm. The NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship Awards Ceremony program will be repeated at 1:00am. The only racing worth watching on Saturday is a rerun of the 2007 Daytona 500 at 8:00am on ESPN Classic. On Sunday, starting at 11:00am the Speed Channel will repeat both awards programs for NASCAR's top divisions. Rounding out the week is the Speed Report at 7:00pm on the Speed Channel.

On the Speedway Stock Market scene last week two of the three speedway stocks were down for the week. Dover Motorsports has a positive ending as they went up 0.04 for the week. Speedway Motorsports dropped 0.61 to 14.83 and the International Speedway Corporation dropped 0.01 to 23.63. NASCAR Cup sponsor Sprint dropped 0.09 to 3.93 while NASCAR fuel supplier Sun Oil went up 1.28 to 40.20. Goodyear, which supplies tires to NASCAR's top divisions dropped 0.28 to 10.03. The car makers were all negative for the week. Ford dropped 0.18 to 16.10 while General Motors dropped 0.46 to 33.80 and Toyota dropped 0.11 to 78.36. In the home improvement sector Lowes went up 0.25 to 22.24 while Home Depot dropped 0.22 to 31.00. The team sponsors ended the week on a positive note. Dupont went up 0.79 to 46.31 while Coca-Cola went up 0.05 to 58 05, Target Department Stores went up 0.54, Aaron's Rentals went up 0.95 to 22.25 and Fedexwent up 0.71 to 87.50.

That’s it for this week from 11 Gardner Drive, Westerly RI 02891. Ring my chimes at 401-596-5467. E-Mail is

Phil Smith has been a columnist for Speedway Scene and other publications for over 3 decades.

Web Design Copyright © 2009 & - All Rights Reserved
Opinions expressed in Phil Smith's "Champ Trail" do not necessarily reflect the opinions of and the contents are the sole responsibility and opinions of the author.
For permission to reproduce any part of"Champ Trail" contact Phil Smith @
The "Champ Trail" is Copyright © 2006-2009 Phil Smith