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Costa Mesa Speedway
Orange County Fairgrounds - Costa Mesa, CA

2000 Costa Mesa
Costa Mesa Speedway
September 9, 2000
From Ryan Evans

Jim Estes takes the Handicap, and Dukie Ermolenko wins the Main !

Jim Estes led from start to finish to capture his second Handicap Main Event of the season in front of a standing-room-only crowd at Costa Mesa. Estes was alone on the 30 yard line with seven fierce competitors behind him.

The first start was red flagged after several riders weren't staged when the tapes went up. On the restart Estes was quickly chased by 17 year old Ryan Fisher. Fisher was immediately pressured by Dukie Ermolenko on the outside and Shawn McConnell on the inside. Fisher's preoccupation with the riders behind him allowed Estes to extend his lead. McConnell fell off the pace after suffering a mechanical failure while Ermolenko's attempts to pass Fisher on the outside proved unsuccessful and allowed several riders to pass him in the process. With no immediate pressure from behind Fisher set out after Estes and had four laps to catch him. Estes was not to be denied, however, as Fisher never closed any ground. Estes took the win followed by Fisher, Josh Larsen was third, Gary Hicks was fourth, and Ermolenko was fifth.

In the Scratch Main, Larsen and Ermolenko gated together with Larsen gaining a slight advantage in turn one. As Larsen drifted in turn two Ermolenko made a beautiful move to cut back under Larsen and take the lead on the back straight. Larsen tried the outside in turn three but over slid in turn four giving Ermolenko a firm hold on the lead and also allowing Fisher to take second. Fisher was unable to gain on Ermolenko and on the last lap he had to contend with Larsen. This allowed Ermolenko to stretch his lead and take his first Scratch Main in two years. Larsen edged passed Fisher at the finish after Fisher suffered an engine failure. Eddie Castro finished fourth and Charlie Venegas finished fifth.

Danny Holt got a terrific start in the Support Main, and despite constant pressure from David Lynch, he was able to hold on for his first main event victory of the year. Sean Larned finished third and Michael Mattocks.

The riders put on a tremendous show no doubt inspired by the large crowd. The freestyle motorcycle jumpers made their second appearance of the year and both appearances have attracted capacity crowds as have their appearances in the past. The evening did have one sour note as Andy Northrup suffered a laceration above his eye after coming together with Venegas exiting turn four. Northrup didn't compete the rest of the evening and no word was given about his status for next week.


Support Consolation
182 - Rudy Laurer
231 - Pat Dwyer
165 - Randy Kreps
103 - Brent Smith
100 - Phil Harmatiuk    (fell)

Support Main
220 - Danny Holt
131 - David Lynch
226 - Sean Larned
122 - Michael Mattocks  (fell)

Handicap Main
 56 - Jim Estes             30
 36 - Ryan Fisher           40
  4 - Josh Larsen           50
  3 - Gary Hicks            50
 15 - Dukie Ermolenko       50
 12 - Randy DiFrancesco     40
 14 - Eddie Castro          40  (penalty line)
  6 - Shawn McConnell       50

Scratch Main
 15 - Dukie Ermolenko
  4 - Josh Larsen
 36 - Ryan Fisher           (engine failure)
 14 - Eddie Castro
 43 - Charlie Venegas
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