Cabral Storms to
NEMA Checkers at Waterford Speedbowl on 6/23
By Dale Wolbrink
(June 23, 2007): It had been nine races since Randy Cabral of
Plymouth, MA, last visited victory lane with the Northeastern
Midget Association. That all changed on Saturday night at the
Waterford Speedbowl when he proved that he had not lost his
winning ways. Cabral topped one of the Nation’s hottest
open-wheel stars, Bobby Santos III of Franklin, MA, in a duel
that came down to the final laps. The victory was the second of
the ‘07 season for car owner Tim Bertrand; making the Bertrand
Motorsports team in the 2-3.
Adam Cantor of Dix Hills, NY, and Erica Santos of Franklin, MA,
brought the field down to the green flag. Santos quickly jumped
out into the lead, while Randy Cabral made a daring three-wide
move to the outside to advance from his sixth starting position
to third within one lap. Cabral quickly made his way by Barry
Kittredge for second, as Cantor began to fade.
On lap four, Cabral began to pressure E. Santos for the lead,
while Nokie Fornoro and Bobby Santos III lurked. Cabral would
make his final advance for the lead on lap five when he drove to
the outside of E. Santos entering turn three. Two laps later,
both Fornoro and B. Santos had made their way into the top three
to set up a fierce battle at the head of the field.
B. Santos, in the Wirtgen America/BEAST #98 struck on lap eleven
to advance into the second spot, diving to the bottom of Fornoro
in the Helping Hands/BEAST #4. At this point, Cabral had
stretched his lead to ten car-lengths over the field.
Heavy lapped traffic began to play a part in the action. With
Cabral out front, Santos had his work cut out in order to set
chase. Lap by lap, Santos edged slightly closer to Cabral.
“I knew that I had used the car up a bit to get to the front,”
said Cabral, “and with the likes of Nokie (Fornoro), Bobby
(Santos), (Ben) Seitz and others in the top five, I’d have to
save some for the end.”
Cabral’s strategy worked to his advantage when a caution on lap
19 pitted the leader against the hard-charging Santos. On the
restart, both Cabral and Santos launched at the same time coming
to the stripe dead-even heat. Entering turn one, still even,
Santos’ car slipped up a bit, allowing Cabral to rocket into the
lead. Over the closing laps, Cabral was able to stretch out his
“My car was getting loose toward the end,” said Santos, “by that
point, we had nothing left to challenge (Cabral) for the win.”
Cabral cruised to the win with a comfortable margin as Santos
III settled for second followed by Nokie Fornoro, Ben Seitz and
Ryan Dolan. Rookie contender Aaron Wall finished sixth followed
by Pete Pernesiglio, Joey Payne, Lou Cicconi, in the MacDonald
owned #49 after a heat race incident. Shane Hammond rounded out
the top ten.
NEMA resumes its schedule with two exciting events with the July
5th event at Thompson International Speedway and then at
Stafford Motor Speedway for “Extreme Tuesday” on July 10th.
Cabral heads the Club into Thompson with the points lead,
followed by a close battle for second between Payne, Seitz and
- Waterford Speedbowl-
||Lake Grove, NY
||E. Bridgewater, MA
||Dix Hills, NY
Franklin Sq., NY
NEMA Sure to
Excite at Waterford This Saturday
By Dale Wolbrink
Groton, CT (June 17, 2007): This
Saturday, June 23, 2007, the Northeastern Midget Association (NEMA)
heads to the Waterford Speedbowl in Waterford, CT, for the second of
four visits scheduled at the facility for the 2007 season. In the season
opener, the Bertrand Motorsports team dominated with a one-two punch by
winner Lou Cicconi, Jr. of Aston, PA, and runner-up Randy Cabral of
Plymouth, MA. The Club hopes to avoid another knock-out punch by Mother
Nature and run the Speedbowl race on schedule. The 2007 season has been
plagued by rain and the Club is hoping for a sunny weekend when they
head to one of the most competitive facilities on their schedule.
For many years, the historic shoreline oval has been the site of many
exciting Midget races. In recent years, the likes of Cabral, Joey Payne,
Ben Seitz and Bobby Santos have provided the thrills. Veteran Nokie
Fornoro has been outstanding in recent visits to the Speedbowl but have
had to chase the Club’s young lions.
The Bertrand Motorsports Team would like nothing more than a repeat of
their April feat; however, Payne has proved to be a worthy opponent for
the “Super Team” with a podium finish in the opener and a victory at
All-Star Speedway last month. Defending Series Champion, Ben Seitz was a
three-time race winner at Waterford in 2005 but was shut out of victory
lane at the Speedbowl in 2006. Without a win to his credit in the short
season thus far, the ultra-competitive Seitz is undoubtedly very hungry
for a win this weekend.
Pete Pernesiglio of Lake Grove, NY, cannot be counted out either. This
former NEMA winner has put together two very strong runs this season and
looks poised to make his return to victory lane. Adam Cantor and Ryan
Dolan are looking to end winless streaks as well.
In 2006, Mike Keeler scored his first career win at the Speedbowl. Other
likely candidates to score their first victory at the shoreline oval
include Shane Hammond and Erica Santos. The famous #29 of the Seymour
Family has visited victory lane a number of times at the Speedbowl in
recent years with the likes of Randy Cabral and Bobby Santos at the
helm. Rookie contender Aaron Wall could join the ranks of both
On Saturday, the Northeastern Midget Association will join a full-slate
of NASCAR Whelen All-American Series competition featuring SK Modifieds,
Late Models, Sportsman and Mini Stocks. All the action gets underway on
Saturday with practice at 2:30 PM. (Pit gates open at 1:00 PM).
Grandstands open at 3:00 PM with general admission for adults at $14.00.
Children are admitted for $5.00. Qualifying begins at 5:00 PM and
includes 10-lap heat races for the NEMA Midgets. Features will go green
at 7:00 PM.
For more information on the Waterford Speedbowl visit
No Secrets Remaining
For NEMA at ‘Bowl
By Pete Zanardi - Speedbowl PR
Waterford, CT - There are no secrets left for the Northeastern Midget
Association (NEMA) at Waterford Speedbowl. Co-point leaders Lou Cicconi
and Joey Payne Jr. lead the winged wonders back to the ‘Bowl Saturday
night, the 25-lap feature part of a five-division program.
Cicconi, who won at this year’s Modified Nationals, and Payne are part
of a host of active NEMA drivers with Speedbowl wins. “It is a pedal to
the metal place,” says Payne who ran laps in the high 12 seconds bracket
in winning at last fall’s Finale. “You don’t get to relax at the
The SK-Modifieds (35-lap feature), Late Models (30), Sportsman (20) and
Mini Stocks (20) are also on the schedule. Qualifying, which includes
NEMA, gets underway at 5 PM with features at 7.
There have been 70 NEMA races at the Speedbowl going back to May 31,
1953. “You have to come prepared to go fast,” says Payne’s car owner
Gene Angelillo. “Everybody loves the place because of that.”
“The Speedbowl’s geography makes it one of the best Midget tracks in the
East,” continues Payne. “The surface is great and there’s just enough
straightaway. You can go three, four wide no problem.”
Three-time and defending champion Ben Seitz (a one-time Legends ace at
the ‘Bowl), Nokie Fornoro, Randy Cabral, Pete Pernesiglio and Barry
Kittredge have also won in the past. It remains a favorite spot for
Seitz who is chasing a record fourth straight NEMA championship.
Seitz’ first Midget win came at the Speedbowl. Among those hoping to
duplicate that Saturday night are ‘Bowl favorites Erica Santos, Cory
Cleary, Adam Cantor and Brit Anderson. NEMA President Mike Scrivani
predicts another bumper field.
Points continue to be the major concern in the SK and Late Model
divisions. A red hot battle rages atop the Late Model standings where
Allen Coates, seeking a fourth crown, and Bruce Thomas Jr. are tied for
the lead with defending champion Tim Jordan just 20 markers behind.
Leader Shawn Monahan has a 22-point edge on Rob Janovic Jr. in the SK
point battle. Like Coates and Thomas, Monahan has left no doubt about
his championship hopes.
With the addition of Dennis Charette (SKs) and defending champion Danny
Field (Minis), the Speedbowl has 19 different NASCAR Whelen All-American
Series winners in nine race meets.
Speedbowl and Midgets Have
By Pete Zanardi - Speedbowl PR
Midget racing in general and the Northeastern Midget Association in
particular has enjoyed a long and eventful relationship with Waterford
Speedbowl. Winning a Midget feature at the ‘Bowl puts a driver on a list
that starts with Johnny Thomson, considered the best open-cockpit driver
New England has produced.
Thomson, who went on to national fame (an Indianapolis
500 pole part of resume) won twice in 1951 (the Speedbowl’s initial
season). Lou Cicconi Jr., successful at this year’s Modified Nationals,
is the latest member of the list.
Three-time NEMA champion Ben Seitz, 2003 king Joey Payne, Randy Cabral,
Pete Pernesiglio, Barry Kittredge and Nokie Fornoro are also on the
list. All are expected when NEMA makes its second 2006 visit Saturday
Speeds will be in the 12 seconds bracket, meaning straightaway speeds in
excess of 110 mph. That is a far cry from George Tichenor’s 17.92
seconds qualifying run for an American Automobile Association 100 lapper
in the fall of 1951. Tichenor’s speed was considered “extraordinary.”
The ‘Bowl’s geography – surface, width, length (just enough
straightaway) – make the three/eights oval a near-perfect Midget
There have 70 NEMA features at the Speedbowl dating from the first one –
a Bill Eldridge win on May 31, 1953. It was NEMA’s first season. Drew
Fornoro is the all-time Speedbowl Midget winner with six features, one
better than Bobby Seymour.
Seitz and Bobby Santos III share the lead among active drivers with four
each. Both scored their first-ever wins at the Speedbowl. Santos’ 2002
Boston Louie is among the high points in Speedbowl Midget history.