Destruction Football Set for New Season at Saugus

It’s a game that would make Vince Lombardi ill. But for better or for worse, destruction football will begin its second season tonight at Saugus Speedway.

For the uninitiated--and there are many--destruction football is a game that pits men in machines against other men in other machines in a sometimes common cause.

Destruction-derby drivers divide into teams and push an ocean buoy to a goal for points. There are two 15-minute halves. The team with the most points wins. If there’s a tie, the game moves to sudden death.

No need for kickers in this game. Can the punter, too. Handoffs are out of the question and passes are mere accidents.


The game, first tried last year at the speedway, was the brainchild of track steward Monte Monteleone and a couple of the other more sadistic members of the Saugus Speedway staff.

In the game’s August debut, a concrete-laden Volkswagen beetle was used as the ball. Two teams of five cars tried to push the car, but it was too heavy and the game ended scoreless.

“The Volkswagen won in that one,” said track publicist Lyn Pherigo.

Track officials then tried tires bound together with chains. That idea lasted a couple of races, then was dropped. The tire enclave seemed to have a mind of its own and often wouldn’t cooperate.


Track officials never gave up and found the answer at the end of last season in the round buoy.

“It’s about five feet in diameter,” Pherigo said. “We’ve used it twice last season and it worked real well.”

The buoy will make the 1986 debut as part of tonight’s season opener at the speedway. Rain postponed last weekend’s season opener for the modified, sportsman and street stock classes. All divisions will run tonight.