View Full Version : 1974 World Championship Demo Derby Tape Wanted

06-13-2006, 10:03 PM
Here's a e-mail I got from one of our visitors:

This is a long shot but I am trying to find somebody that can help me track down a copy of the World Championship Demo Derby at Islip Speedway that was televised on Wide World of Sports. I can not remember how many World Championship Demo Derbies were covered by Wide World of Sports, but from what I can tell searching the internet, there was at least one in 1974. My father drove in that derby and did advance to the final round. He is now almost 70 and living in Florida. I tried sending several emails to ABC but never got any responses. I would love to get a copy of it for him. Any help would be appreciated.

I can remember when my father brought the car home for the derby to be prepped. All the kids in the neighborhood came over and had a blast tearing everything off the car, punching holes through the doors for the chains, busting out the windows, cutting fire holes in the hood, etc. It was something that the average kid did not get to do everyday, at least legally. LOL!!

Please email me at G046641@verizon.net if you can be of assistance.


Dan C

Tampa, FL

06-14-2006, 11:13 PM

Thanks for helping me get set up. I hope we get some hits :help: on the demo derby tape.

Garfield :wave:

06-17-2006, 10:32 PM
I also tried a couple of years ago to email a.b.c. about ANY demo footage they had and also never got a response.If you have any luck please post about it.

06-18-2006, 09:53 AM
I have a few friends that work for other broadcast companies. I will be checking with them for any ideas on how to approach ABC. I will be happy to share any information I can find. :) Lets keep our fingers crossed.

06-18-2006, 10:04 AM
Can anybody tell me:

1. How many "World Championship" demo derbies were held at Islip Speedway and what years?

2. How many of them were covered by Wide World of Sports and what years? I know of at least one that I was at. I don't know if ABC covered more than one. I can also only estimate the year. (The 1970's is very sketchy in places :cool: ).

If I ever find a contact in ABC, this information may help me tell them what I want in regards to Islip Speedway demo footage.



06-19-2006, 09:47 PM
I have tried to contact ABC Sports and ESPN , and I too, like many others, was very disappointed as to their response. I would think that this is something that they could put on ESPN Classic. The demo derby and the figure 8 were shown in the late 60's and the early 70's. I have asked for help on this issue also. GOOD LUCK

W. J.
06-19-2006, 10:14 PM
Sadly, ABC/ESPN has not a care in the world about any motorsports but the very top echelons, Cup and IRL/Champ Car. The only way they're even going to come up with demo-derby tapes is if they find them under 2 inches of dust in a forgotten closet. Anybody care to think what the odds of that happening are!???

06-20-2006, 11:16 AM
Now I am very biased as to the demo derby, but I think they can make some bucks on those already taped events. Like the other guy said, ESPN Classic is a perfect place to air them, and they're already set up for commercials.

W. J.
06-20-2006, 12:13 PM
Now I am very biased as to the demo derby, but I think they can make some bucks on those already taped events. Like the other guy said, ESPN Classic is a perfect place to air them, and they're already set up for commercials.

All this is predicated on them still having the tapes. I'll bet they don't, just too expensive to achive everything.

06-25-2006, 12:17 PM
There was a recent show on ESPN CLASSIC about demos at Islip. They said that there were something like 11 or 12 years of coverage from Islip on ABC's Wide World of Sports. Maybe ESPN and ESPN Classic are two different "companies"?

06-25-2006, 12:50 PM
I do know that George tet was the first demo champ in i think 1961 and Bobby Bennison was the last in 1984.

06-27-2006, 03:39 PM
This thread says the 'Mad hatter' Tom Kilkenny was the last Demo champ at Islip. I was there and honestly I don't remember.

06-30-2006, 08:22 PM
Bobby Benison was not a champion at Islip nor was Tommy. I also believe Islip was an empty lot by 1984! Where did you get this info? Anyway, ABC's Wide World of Sports announced mostly by Chris Economaki was televised for quite a number of years and I would hope and believe that those tapes are on some shelf somewhere, waiting to be brought to life. I would love to see them. It was the one victory that always eluded me. Good luck in your search. :cool:

06-30-2006, 09:15 PM
Sorry to disagree with you Bob. But Bob Benison was the last world champ at Islip in 1984. Tom "Madhatter" Kilkenny won the very last demo held at Islip which was held a few weeks later. Tom won championship in 1983. [Championship used to be held on Labor Day weekend.] I was crashing in both of them.

W. J.
06-30-2006, 09:59 PM
Gravel is right. Islip wasn't torn down until 1985, when the Town of Islip (Michael LoGrande) sold us out to the Silverlake Cookie Co. :mad:
Worse than that, the town did the actual tearing down of the speedway (with MY tax monies!). :mad: :mad: :mad:

07-01-2006, 08:10 PM
Hey Grav, I called Keith this morn. cause i gave him the day off and asked if possibly i was wrong in my post and not only was I incorrect but I too was in that show with Keith, bobby, tommy and you. I flat out forgot the results.....hey I'm old....and it was 22 years ago....and I've taken some hard licks.....and,and,and......I'm oldddd. My apologies to art11758 and R.W.B.. :confused: :confused: :confused: :confused:

07-01-2006, 08:12 PM
What hard licks? Didn't Keith call you "Tappin' Bob"? :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

07-01-2006, 08:22 PM
Keith demo'd with his eyes closed. I used my brain, which, by the way, does not work anymore. :confused:

07-01-2006, 08:56 PM
Didn't you almost lose a finger in a demo at Islip?

07-02-2006, 11:57 AM
One demo, I was driving a 1967 fury s/w with all the rear seats in the fold down position. I "tapped" another car hard going backwards which forced all the folded seats forward like an accordian into my right hand that was over the back of the front seat severing the upper part of my pinky almost completely. They red flagged the demo for the driver I hit because he got injured and I wrapped my finger with a bandana, finished the race (no victory), went to Islip General, where they stitched it up. I always gutted the cars after that. :cool:

07-02-2006, 12:01 PM
No wonder why they call you CarWarsVet! :eek: