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Welcome to the New England Antique Racers and New England Auto Racers Hall of Fame

 

 

 


 

 

Slide Show of Vintage Race Cars

The New England Antique Racers Club is a non-profit organization that supports the history of New England auto racing. NEAR has been in existence since 1981 and has a growing membership of approx. 350-400 members and 80 antique race cars. Members live throughout New England and are available, on a no charge basis, for exhibition events at  local race tracks in New England and several tracks in the New York area, with both original and historical replica race cars.

Since 1998, we have inducted 185 individuals into the New England Auto Racers Hall Of Fame, which is administered by the New England Antique Racers. Some very notable inductees include Richie Evans, Ron Bouchard, Bugs Stevens, Rene Charland, Pete Hamilton, Fred DeSarro, Ed Flemke, Sr. and Billy Greco.

Next Meeting: Tuesday, August 19, 2014
Monthly Meetings are at:
7:15pm
Triple A Restaurant
1209 Main St. (Rt. 5)
East Hartford, CT
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Saturday Night is Race Night this Week with
New England Antique Racers

July 21, 2014

On Saturday, July 26, the New England Antique Racers will be appearing at the Waterford Speedbowl located at 1080 Hartford Turnpike ( Route 85), Waterford, CT.

Come on down and see vintage race cars take to the track as part of the racing program at this family friendly speedway. The NEAR Hall Of Fame Mobile Museum will also be there to share local racing history with the fans; as well as static displays for your enjoyment.

New England Auto Racing Hall of Fame Members will be on hand to sign your pictures, hats and T-shirts -- so be sure to bring your markers and items for their signature. Don’t miss your chance to talk to the folks who were your racing heroes at the local tracks for decades.

NEAR will also take part in the awarding of the Charlie Mitchell Memorial Trophy as part of the festivities. So grab your shirt, hat or jacket and show the NEAR colors -- enjoy a great evening of racing.

For the cars, the sign is 3pm and the heat races start at 5pm. I know I will see you there for all the Vintage and NASCAR action.

By Bill Henry

NEAR Riverside Reunion Committee Report
(NEAR Riverside Reunion, August 31, 2014, click here for flyer)
July 21, 2014
The NEAR Riverside Reunion Committee is excited to report that
planning for the event is on schedule.
 
The following drivers have indicated they will be attending:
Bob Polverari, Billy Greco, Ed Flemke Jr., Dan Avery, Tommy Fearn, and we have just begun the process of contacting past competitors.
 
We have lined up three food trucks:

Moe's Donuts will be serving fresh hot Apple Cider Donuts on site
along with fresh brewed coffees.
 
Mary from the Herban Grille will be serving breakfast sandwiches,
hot dogs, burgers, and pulled Pork wraps.
 
The Moolicious Ice Cream truck will come by after 12 p.m.
 
We have taste tested these items and all are delicious with very reasonable prices.
 
Drinks including beer and wine will be sold by the Polish Club.
 
People may bring their own food but not bring any alcoholic beverages.
(This is a strict Polish Club policy)
 
We have some amazing attractions besides a display of vintage racers
belonging to NEAR membrs
 
Matt Provost will bring a restored antique Model T type car that was part of the kiddie rides for over 50 years. The car runs and will be giving rides if space and safety concerns are met.
 
The NEAR Mobile Museum will be on display.
 
We plan on having an autograph table set up sometime during the day.
 
If we have enough entries, we will have a model race car contest so dig out your old self made models now. Both adults and kids divisions.
 
We are seeking donations for a large raffle of racing related items.
 
KGM videos will be showing and selling Riverside videos all day.
 
Scott Nichols will be selling his racing photos.
 
Keep checking back every week and we will update every Monday.
 
All types of Riverside memorialibilia are welcome.
 
Any questions or suggestions contact finiplants@aol.com
New England Antique Racers Appeared at the Simsbury Show
July 21, 2014

On Sunday, July 13, some of the members of New England Antique Racers took time from their weekend to support the Valley Collector Car Club by participating in a "still" show;  Jim Splettstoeszer made the arrangement for the club. The members of the public were treated to every kind of motor vehicle in addition to the vintage stock cars of NEAR.

Appearing for the club in addition to Jim, and his  flying  Greek 87, were Rich Belmonte and Bill Greco with the famous #43 and Ron Carlson who had to select from his fleet of cars and finally decided on $.   All the cars are fine representations of the skill and dedication of the members to restore and maintain these beautiful racing machine. Thanks guys for going and representing NEAR.

By Bill Henry

Riverside Park & Speedway 15th Anniversary
July 16, 2014

Mitchell Honored at Speedbowl
July 15, 2014

The winner of the 35-lap SK-Modified feature on Waterford Speedbowl’s annual Nostalgia Night, July 26, will take home the Charlie Mitchell Memorial Trophy. The Speedbowl and the Connecticut Sportswriters Alliance have come together to honor a man who was,  without doubt, New England’s premier motorsports journalist.

A traditional stop for the New England Antique Racers, this year’s presence will be highlighted by Hall of Famer Don LaJoie who will be on hand to honor the memory of his long-time friend. Mitchell’s family, including sons Chuck, James and Dennis, will share the honorary starter role.

The Northeastern Midget Association and the NEMA Lites are on hand for the annual Shane Hammond Memorial. The Speedbowl’s Late Models, Sportsman and Mini Stocks made it a very busy night.

When the NEAR took to honoring media members, Charlie Mitchell was one of the first honorees.  After Charlie’s passing in 2012, his name was added to the award. His long-time friend Pete Vander Veer was the first recipient of the Mitchell/Ratta award last year.

A Norwalk, CT native, Mitchell wrote for his hometown “The Hour” newspaper for over four decades, actually starting as a police reporter. It was, however, his auto racing column, which he started in 1971, that remains his shinning legacy. The column continued after he officially retired, almost until his passing.

He was a racing fan/participant since his early teenage years, actually crewing with Hall of Famer Chick Stockwell for a time.

Charlie always seemed to be a step in front when it came to the New England media. He sat, for instance, on the Union 76 Racing Panel of Experts – a very big deal in the 1970s.  He was on the board of directors of National Motorsports Press Association and on the selection committee of Auto Racing Hall of Fame at Talladega.

It was all due to a writing style that was geared toward the reader, the result of serving “The Hour” in several roles including news writer and sports editor. With hometown racing heroes like the LaJoie boys, Bob Sharp and Bob Reilly, Charlie served Norwalk well. He was a frequent participant in press boxes thought the East but he took it nationally as well. He and wife “Mimi” went everywhere.

The prominent national sanctioning bodies – NASCAR, ARCA, USAC, SCCA – loved, even courted, Charlie Mitchell. He was also a member of the New England Auto Racing Hall of Fame’s selection committee from its inception for 16 years until his passing.

Vermont Racing Pioneer & New England Auto Racing
Hall Of Fame Member Johnny Gammell Passes At Age 86

July 10, 2014
(click on photo for full size)

It’s been learned that 2008 New England Auto Racing Hall Of Fame Inductee John “Johnny” Gammell passed-away peacefully at his home in St. Johnsbury, Vermont on Friday, July 4th following an extended illness. 

Enjoying an extraordinary career that began in 1949 and concluded in 1972, he was twice a Vermont State Champion. 

Scoring feature triumphs at virtually all of the tracks in his region, one of many career highlights came in 1969 when he won the prestigious Milk Bowl at Vermont’s Thunder Road wheeling the memorable “Hawaii Five-0” entry owned by Joey Laquerre.

The entire New England Antique Racers family takes this opportunity to extend its sincerest condolences to Johnny’s family and many friends on this somber occasion. Click here for full obituary.

By Dave Dykes