25 Years Ago in Bonac Sports: 04.06.17

Local Sports History

April 2, 1992

As the Bridgehampton Race Circuit revs up for a season of action through mid-November, its board of directors, faced with a $2 million “balloon” mortgage payment, is proposing to sell the 521-acre tract, one of the largest open parcels in Southampton Town, at public auction.


April 9, 1992

Nassau and Suffolk County athletic officials have agreed to play Long Island championship football games at Hofstra University next Dec. 5 to determine Islandwide champions in four enrollment divisions. The agreement required that Suffolk realign its football leagues by enrollment and ability so as to jibe with Nassau’s. Both moves were hailed by East Hampton’s athletic director, Richard Cooney Sr.

. . . East Hampton will play in Division Four along with Mount Sinai, Harborfields, John Glenn, Bayport-Blue Point, Babylon, Wyandanch, Southampton, Mercy, Hampton Bays, Port Jefferson, and Stony Brook.


April 23, 1992

With a public auction of the 521-acre Bridgehampton Race Circuit tract two months away, Dennis Macchio, the track’s general manager, and Guy Frost, founder of an ad hoc group of sports car racing enthusiasts that twice during the 1980s prevented the track’s sale for residential development, predicted at a press conference Saturday that racing people would retain possession of the track, and warned that it would be folly for bottom-fishing developers to bid.

. . . “These cars at 100 miles per hour run quieter than your lawn mower,” said Mr. Macchio, who noted that the track had taken pains in recent years to satisfy the town noise limit, 65 decibels.


Gordon Carberry, a 57-year-old former football and lacrosse player, wrestler, sprinter, surfer, lifeguard, coach, and referee who now is a top-ranked triathlete, remains exuberant.

“The first lacrosse game I ever saw was the one I was in,” he said, adding that because he played midfield on the same Syracuse team as Jim Brown, he often played the sideline.

. . . In 1961, he won the first surfing championship ever contested on Long Island. It took place in big waves at Lido Beach. Mr. Carberry was a lifeguard at Massapequa’s Tobay Beach at the time. 

Despite the win, he never competed again. “We were so spoiled at Tobay in the beginning. Then it got crowded, and you got shoved, kicked, and cut off. I went back to body surfing.”

. . . There is no thought of slowing down as a triathlete. He’s ranked 26th nationally among the 55-to-59-year-olds. 

Last year, he returned to Syracuse to compete in the U.S. Senior Olympics, where, he said, the physical prowess of senior citizens boggled the mind. 

“When I was in my 20s,” he said as he buckled on his helmet and lifted his racing bike from the garage, “people in their 50s and 60s were physical non-entities.”


April 30, 1992

A large, competitive Sports Car Club of America national field and Sunday’s fine weather had sports car racing aficionados reminiscing fondly of the glory days at the Bridgehampton Race Circuit and dreaming of a renaissance, even as a public auction of the 521-acre tract looms.

“My dream is to have Indy cars here in five years,” said Clay Mears, a desert-truck driver who lives in Sag Harbor and whose cousin, Rick, is a four-time Indy winner.

“It’s sort of the opposite of ‘Field of Dreams,’ ” said Mike Joy, a television motorsports announcer who flew up from Atlanta to race in the S.C.C.A.’s Spec Racer class. “Don’t mess with it and they will come.” There was an estimated crowd of 350 spectators at the track on Sunday, a heartening sight to racers.