Warren Coniam’s Highlights Of His Career
- 1975 Satelite Speedway Track Champion in the Solvay Automotive #04
- 1975 Sandusky Speedway Classic Winner in the Solvay Automotive #04
- 1977 Oswego Speedway Classic Winner in the McKnight Roadster #6
- 1978 Oswego Speedway Track Champion in the McKnight Roadster #6
- 1978 Won the Ohio Series (Columbus, Lorain, Sharon and Sandusky) in the Mcknight Roadster #6
- 1978 New Symrna Champion Florida in the McKnight Roadster #6
- 1979 raced the Jimmy Shampine rear engine car at the Oswego Classic
- 1980 Oswego Speedway Track Champion in Clyde Booth’s #9
- 1987 Oswego Speedway Classic Winner in the Joe Magari #10
- 1996 Warren was inducted into the Canadian Motorsports Hall of Fame
- 1999 Warren was inducted into the Oswego Speedway Hall of Fame
- 2019 Warren was inducted into the Flamboro Speedway Hall of Fame
- 2021 Warren was inducted into the Yesterday’s Speedways Hall of Fame
Warren Coniam’s Story
Warren use to go to the CNE Stadium and watch the car races. Drivers Like Jimmy Howard, Ted Hogam, Earl Parkes, Doug Syer, Norm Mackereth and his favorite driver, Howie Scannell.
Then, funny enough, a buddy of Warren’s took him to Scannell’s shop where Howie and Earl kept their race cars.
Warren and his buddy started hanging out there, watching and learning, then Earl told Warren he was looking for a engine for his race car. As it turned out, Warren happened to be building a hot rod at the time and he had a Buick engine, so, Earl and Warren struck up a deal and the Buick motor went in Earl’s race car.
Earl had to work one Saturday and there was a race at Bridgeport Speedway in Kitchener, Ontario. Earl told Warren to take the car to Bridgeport and race it. Warren raced the car at the CNE as well. The front runners were passing him on the inside and the outside but Warren was able to hold his own and bring the car back in one piece.
In 1964, Warren was driving one of Hazen McIntosh’s Supermodifieds for a while. This was a two car team in which Warren raced the #46 and Hazen raced the #9.
Warren started racing full time in 1966 at Flamboro Speedway in a car owned by Jack Rowe and Al Webster. The first night out for this new team they won the feature and had a very respectable seaon from then on.
In late August 1966 Carl Rutledge approached Warren to drive the ‘Rutledge Rocket’ after the Sam Snider crash at Flamboro a few weeks earlier. Warren accepted the offer and Jack Rowe and Al Webster came to the Rutledge team with him. Once again, the first night out in the ‘Rutledge Rocket’ #46 Warren won the feature at Nilestown Speedway.
For the next couple of years the Warren Coniam and ‘Rutledge Rocket’ were the team to beat around Ontario race tracks and several tracks across the border in the US.
Most of the Ontario tracks with the exception of Speedway Park stopped racing the Supermodified class, which sent the Canadian teams to their new home track, Oswego New York. Warren and the Rutledge team struggled at Oswego for the fist year but in 1969 things picked up considerably and they won the 100 lap mid-season Championship.
It was 1970 that Warren left the Rutledge team and wound up in a few different cars during the 1970 season including the Warren Nulls Roadster, Don and John Fleming built Supermodified and at the end of the end of the 1970 season, Warren was sitting in Howard Purdy’s ‘Immortal Deuce‘.
Over the last few years, Warren has raced for some good teams but when Dave McKnight Sr. tapped him on the shoulder to take over the driving duties in the McKnight Roadster things really started to improve.
In 1977, their first year together Warren and the McKnight Roadster won the Oswego Speedway International Classic.
The following year, 1978, Warren and the McKnight team won the Oswego Speedway Track Championship, the Ohio Series (consisting of races at Columbus Ohio, Lorain County Ohio, Sharon Ohio, and Sandusky Ohio) as well as Speedweeks in New Smyrna Florida, 1978 was an incredible year for this team.
One of the most memorable times for Warren and his fans was the 1979 Oswego Speedway Classic. Jimmy Shampine had recently completed a brand new rear engine car. Because it was brand new and unproven, Jimmy decided to race his #8 Ball instead of the new car. Jimmy asked Warren if he would run the rear engine car in the Classic as his second entry. Accepting the offer Warren raced tha car and at one point went a lap down when he stopped for fuel. He came back out and raced his way back to the front unlapping himself. Warren was chasing down the leaders very quickly in this unproven new rear engine car when a split oil line sidelined him with approximately 20 laps to go.
This rear engine car built by Oswego Speedway Legend Jimmy Shampine was so far ahead of its time, Oswego Speedway banned the car from future competition.
Warren had a lot of good years between 1978 and 1986 winning another Oswego Track Championship in 1980 and many good finishes over the years.
Joe Magari, owner of the #10 Supermodified asked Warren to drive his car in the 1987 Oswego Speedway Classic. Warren accepted the ride and raced the car for Joe. Warren started 12th in the field and paced himself for the first half of the race, then at the halway point it was time to go. Joe had a good car and with Warren’s years of experience behind the wheel, he was able to win the 1987 Oswego Speedway International Classic for the 2nd time as a driver, while at the same time, giving the Magari Team their biggest win ever.
Warren gave it a lot of thought and decided that he wanted to go out on top so at the 1987 Oswego Speedway Banquet he announced his retirement.