Costa Mesa Speedway
Orange County Fairgrounds - Costa Mesa, CA
2000 Costa Mesa
Costa Mesa Speedway
September 23, 2000
From Ryan Evans
Dukie Ermolenko made a great start and ran away with his second Scratch Main
victory in three weeks at Costa Mesa.
Bobby "Boogaloo" Schwartz was penalized 20 yards for touching the tapes on
the first attempt to start the race. The second start saw Ermolenko and Josh Larsen come out of the gate even but Ermolenko got the better of the former
Junior National Champion in turn one and took the lead. Shawn "Mad Dog" McConnell
was hot on Ermolenko's heels at the close of lap one and it looked
like the main event was going to be a hotly contested battle. Ermolenko was
not about to jeopardize his lead and after the initial lap, he pulled away
from McConnell and cruised to the victory. McConnell finished second, Andy Northrup finished third, Schwartz was fourth, and Larsen was fifth.
Chris Manchester returned with a vengeance by easily winning his second
Handicap Main of the year. Manchester, returning to Costa Mesa from a
suspension after an altercation last month, beat fellow 40 yard riders Brad Oxley, Randy DiFrancesco, and Northrup to turn one, thus making him the
initial challenger to Mark Adams who had started from the 20. Manchester
turned up the heat immediately and took the lead at the end of lap two.
Adams, possibly rattled from being passed, fell down entering turn three
forcing Northrup to lay his bike down and bringing out the red flag.
The staggered restart would begin with Manchester at the tapes, DiFrancesco
on the 10, McConnell on the 20, and the rest of the field behind them.
Northrup was unable to restart due to damage sustained to his bike. With
Manchester starting at the front of the field, the end result proved to be
purely academic as the former National Champion ran away from DiFrancesco and
the rest of the field. DiFrancesco and McConnell finished the same way they
began the restart, second and third, respectively, with Ermolenko finishing
fourth, and Oxley finishing fifth.
Tim Tucker put in a great ride to win the Support Last Chance and qualify for
the Support Main. Tucker's hard work appeared to pay off as he quickly took
the lead in the main event. John DeFries, returning from Utah, was in
pursuit but after two laps the win appeared to be Tucker's. Tucker went wide
in turn for of lap three and DeFries shot up the inside to take the lead at
the white flag. Tucker wasn't able to challenge on the last lap and DeFries
took his third Support Main of the year despite only competing four times.
Tucker was second, Michael Mattocks was third, Paul Hitchcock was fourth, and Sean McDougall was fifth.
Japanese rider Hideaki Ota made a successful speedway debut by easily winning
his heat and the Support B Main Event. Ota took the lead right from the
start and was never close to being threatened as he put in a solid four laps
to earn the victory. Ota received a rousing ovation from the crowd who
obviously appreciated his very impressive debut.
Support B Main yards
240 - Hideaki Ota 0
165 - Randy Kreps 0
148 - Chris Metoyer 0
239 - Philip Williams 10
196 - Randy Kreps 0 (fell)
107 - Monte McKeon 0 (non-starter)
139 - Shaun Harmatiuk
198 - Mike Boyle
120 - Bill McCarley
100 - Phil Harmatiuk (non-starter)
316 - John DeFries
215 - Tim Tucker
122 - Michael Mattocks (penalty line)
114 - Paul Hitchcock (fell)
243 - Sean McDougall (fell)
Handicap Main yards
130 - Chris Manchester 40
12 - Randy DiFrancesco 40
6 - Shawn McConnell 50
15 - Dukie Ermolenko 50
1 - Brad Oxley 40
11 - Bobby Schwartz 50
223 - Mark Adams 20 (penalty line)
166 - Andy Northrup 40 (non-starter)
15 - Dukie Ermolenko
6 - Shawn McConnell
166 - Andy Northrup
11 - Bobby Schwartz
4 - Josh Larsen