Award Presentations
2014 Schedule Among Topics of NEAR Annual Meeting

On Sunday afternoon January 5th, the New England Antique Racers (NEAR)conducted its annual meeting at the Dante Club in West Springfield, Massachusetts. Presiding was current club president, Al Fini.

Among items on the slate was an announcement of thus-far secured events for the 2014 racing season. Also on the agenda was the presentation of several awards.

New England Auto Racing Hall of Fame member Billy Greco received the prestigious Frank Marratta Award. Established in 1981, the clubs longest-running award is presented yearly to a dedicated individual that routinely serves as a goodwill ambassador of the sport. Among the most-admired racers within our region, Greco remains a very active NEAR member. Among his contributions in 2013 was a successful club fundraising picnic held in August. A stalwart of the Tattersall families former United Stock Car Racing Club, he was a multi-time champion. His decades-long career concluded following a run with the Southern New York Racing Association at Connecticut’s former Danbury Fair Racearena. He was inducted into the HOF in 1999.

Presented to an individual displaying a record of dedication & hard work to NEAR is the decades-running Charlie Stebbins Award named in-honor of one of the original organizers of the club. An absolute-expert on the early days of auto racing in the upper regions of New England, Lloyd Hutchins Jr. was this year’s recipient for his continued efforts in the name of NEAR. Well-known amongst the regions racing historians, Hutchins’ willingness to share his vast knowledge of the sports history is universally appreciated.

Receiving 2013 NEAR participation awards were; Scott & Judy Poirier (15 events), Scott Haskell (10), Team Blanchette, Jim Torok, and Rich Belmonte (9), Brian "Spanky" Bancroft (8), and, Lloyd Hutchins Jr. & Bill Kemp (7).

Vice President Bill Henry announced several events for the 2014 season with additional dates still in the preliminary stages. Confirmed venues include New Hampshire’s Monodnock Speedway, Massachusetts’ Seekonk Speedway, and, Stafford Springs Motor Speedway, & the Waterford Speedbowl in Connecticut. Several car shows and raceway reunions round-out a busy schedule.

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.

The New England Auto Racers Hall of Fame is administered by the New England Antique Racers. Some very notable inductees include Richie Evans, Ron Bouchard, “Wild Bill” Slater, Bugs Stevens, Rene Charland, Pete Hamilton, Fred DeSarro, Ed Flemke, Sr. and Billy Greco. For more information on NEAR visit our website at