Budweiser Fall Classic Swamp Buggy Races postponed

William DeShazer/Staff
Eddie Chesser in 'The Rapture' heads down the final stretch neck and neck with Steve Dunson in 'Pump It Out' during the Spring Classic Swamp Buggy Races at Florida Motorsports Park on Sunday March 3, 2013.

Photo by WILLIAM DESHAZER // Buy this photo

William DeShazer/Staff Eddie Chesser in "The Rapture" heads down the final stretch neck and neck with Steve Dunson in "Pump It Out" during the Spring Classic Swamp Buggy Races at Florida Motorsports Park on Sunday March 3, 2013.

The Board of Directors of Swamp Buggy, Inc., announced Friday the Budweiser Fall Classic races scheduled for Nov. 2-3 will be canceled. It's the first time in the 64-year history of swamp buggy racing that the Fall Classic will not take place.

A press release stated the Fall Classic was postponed "due to safety concerns due to delays in developer improvements to Rattlesnake Hammock Road Extension, which provides access to the Florida Sports Park. Swamp Buggy, Inc., is also undergoing its own renovations to its banquet hall and other improvements to the park to enhance the safety and enjoyment of our patrons."

The revamped three-race schedule kicks off Jan. 25-26, followed by what normally is the Spring Classic on March 1-2. The finale now will be May 3, and take place at night.

"We believe these improvements will increase the public's enjoyment of the Sports Park and the family-oriented events that attract over 100,000 spectators each year," the release states.

The annual Swamp Buggy Parade also will be postponed to correspond with the new race schedule. The parade will be rescheduled, "pending permit approval," the release states.

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Comments » 6

Martha_Simons writes:

Swamp Buggy Fans can still see swamp buggies at The First Annual Bonita Springs Swamp Buggy Show at Everglades Wonder Gardens, Sat. Oct. 26, 2013
11-am-4pm. in historic Bonita Springs, Birthplace of the Swamp Buggy. Meet the drivers, see Racing buggies, sand buggies, jeeps and Swamp Buggy Beauties. Maybe even Sam Snell's "Flying Saucer" which raced at the "Tater Patch" in 1952. Free to the public.

keekee writes:

Uh-oh. Sounds like taps for another Naples tradition. If they don’t close it down all together, drain the sippy holes throw gravel around and build a great big Mediterranean façade housing boxy little million dollar condos, I’ll be surprised.

The “improvements?” Humm, I wonder. The first Swamp buggy race I ever attended, consisted of a truck ride to the grounds through swampy terrain, no roadway, improved or otherwise, pitching a tent, finding enough dry wood to start a campfire, passing around the white lightening in Mason jars, or the smores or both, waking up filthy dirty and muddy, and enjoying the day as the boys played and sped and flung muddy water all over the place!

I suppose now, with the improvements and all, you won’t need a truck to get you through, and I can’t imagine the price of a beer after the “renovations” of the banquet hall.

I wonder if there will be a dress code?

keekee writes:

Thank you, Martha_Simons for the information. I can’t wait!

If you are an old timer of the area or interested in its history, you have to view the following. It’s a great video of the old show “What’s My Line” featuring our own Leonard Chesser.


rocknfla writes:

As soon as the first crane showed up and they closed the road to the track, I knew this was gonna happen! Let the developers have their way at the expense of a way of life for longtime Naples residents! Boooo! Hissssss!

Martha_Simons writes:

Keekee, LOL!!! That was a great clip.When was that, about 1972?
I am not homegrown but have lived in FL since 1978 and remember how laid back things used to be here.There were some fun times.
I like digging up and preserving history.. Are you "the Real Naples" blogger?
Hope to meet you on Oct. 26 at the Swampy Buggy Show. You will be among friends.

keekee writes:

Yes, it was 1972 and no, I'm not "Real Naples" blogger, but I know him. It was "Real Naples" who displayed the "What's My Line" video on his space. I found it on YouTube a couple of years later and I've been sharing it every chance I get! It's such a hoot!

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