For a time it was uncertain whether there would even be a race season at New London's Waterford Speedbowl this year in the wake of a sex trafficking investigation involving the track's owner.
But tonight the cars rolled out for their first race. Engines are roaring once again at the New London Waterford Speedbowl.
"I've always been to Waterford many years and this is why I'm here. First race of the season I'm really excited," Suffield resident Ryan Oakes said Saturday.
Over the years, the track has been home to many NASCAR champions and a staple for racing fans.
"My grandfather bought into the track in the early 60's. So i was born here basically. So I've been here a long time and I'm really glad it's open but i just hope the money goes not to Bemer. That's my only issue you know," John Brouwer of Groton said.
The Speedbowl's owner, Bruce Bemer admitted in court to paying mentally ill, young men for sex in a human trafficking ring based out of Danbury. He was arrested and charged in march.
"Doesn't matter, doesn't matter i mean these people want a race they will come here to race with NASCAR or without NASCAR and as you can see they're all here and there's more coming. There's people that aren't here that said they will have their cars ready next week so..," race track operator George Whitney said.
Stepping in to save the season, former driver George Whitney signed a lease agreement to operate the track and open the gates to fans.
The speedway will be open every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday and a full schedule is still being determined.
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