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2001 West Coast Results Page

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Costa Mesa Speedway

Orange County Fairgrounds - Costa Mesa, CA

2001 Auto Trader Magazine Fan Appreciation Night
Costa Mesa Speedway
June 30, 2001
From Ryan Evans

2001 Kit Nay

Kitt Nay rode eight flawless laps and led from start to finish to earn his first Handicap Main Event victory at Costa Mesa Saturday Night.

Nay started alongside Robbie Sauer on the 20 yard line while the rest of the eight-man field started on the 40 and 50 yard lines. Nay beat Sauer to turn one and took the lead on the first lap. While Nay comfortably held the lead through lap one, Sauer felt the pressure from the back yardage riders. Shawn McConnell got by Sauer on the second lap and set his sights on Nay. McConnell, returning to action after sufferering a broken ankle several weeks ago at San Bernardino, closed the gap between he and Nay and was on his back tire at the end of lap four. McConnell did everything he could to take the lead, but Nay was able to withstand everything he tried. McConnell made one last attempt on the final lap, but Nay held him back and was the first to the checkered flag. Dukie Ermolenko was third, Josh Larsen was fourth, and Ryan Fisher was fifth.

The victory had to be gratifying for Nay as he has held the lead in the Handicap Main on two separate occasions this year only to have bad luck take it away from him, the most recent of which was a broken chain while leading comfortably on lap five two weeks ago. The quiet rider drives several hours each Saturday to compete at Costa Mesa and his dedication was finally rewarded with his hard-earned victory.
Fisher and Ermolenko gated together in the Scratch Main and had a great inside-outside battle before the red flag was thrown because Larsen and Gary Hicks came together in turn one causing Hicks to fall. The referee declared that there would be a full restart.

The second opportunity benefitted three-time U.S. National Champion "Flyin" Mike Faria as he made an excellent trap from the outside to take the lead entering turn one. Fisher, who came from the pole, was second but never got close to Faria who simply ran away with his fourth Costa Mesa Scratch Main of the year. Fisher held on to second, Ermolenko was third, Larsen was fourth, and Hicks was fifth.

David Lynch got a good start and took the lead of the Support Main Event as the field exited turn two. Bentley Barrett and Jeff Blaydes immediately tried to challenge Lynch for the lead. Lynch managed to put some distance between himself and the other two riders, leaving them to battle for second place. Lynch was a comfortable winner, with Barrett holding off Blaydes for second, Paul Hitchcock was fourth, and Rudy Laurer was fifth.

Jeremiah LeBlanc got the jump on the rest of the field and led the Support B Main Event on the first lap. LeBlanc found trouble in turn one on the second lap and fell. Mike Lewistook over the lead and looked like he was going to win his second main event of the year. As he took the white flag Scott Tidwell made an attempt for the lead. The two riders made contact entering turn one with Tidwell taking the lead and holding it throughout the last lap for the victory. Lewis finished second, Billy Braden was third, Kim Stevens was fourth, LeBlanc was fifth, and Mike Gannon was sixth.

Destin Cantrell took the early lead in the Junior Main and rode four smooth laps to get the win. In his debut, Troy McConnell, Shawn McConnell's son, finished second, Ricky Wells was third, Skyler Greyson was fourth, and Krystal Cramer was fifth.
Next week is the annual Coors Light 25 Lap Classic. The program will have a scratch format to determine the 14-man main event for the longest race of the season. The Support Division will feature a 12-man 12-lap main event as well.

The event will feature four past winners, with Bobby Schwartz (1990 at Glen Helen), Chris Manchester (1991-92), Gary Hicks (1994), and Shawn McConnell (1998) scheduled to be on the program. Last year's winner, Charlie Venegas, will be unable to defend his crown because of a broken leg suffered in an ice race over the winter.


Support B Consolation
103 - Brent Smith               20
163 - Rohn Zellner             20
310 - K.G. Fairbarn              10
145 - Wesley Mounts               10  (fell)

Support B Main Event
118 - Scott Tidwell             20
205 - Mike Lewis               20
117 - Billy Braden              20
197 - Kim Stevens                 10
137 - Jeremiah LeBlanc            10  (fell, remounted)
277 - Mike Gannon                 10  (retired)

Support Consolation
220 - Danny Holt
239 - Philip Williams
174 - Tomasz Hampel
100 - Phil Harmatiuk

Support Main Event
131 - David Lynch
300 - Bentley Barrett
173 - Jeff Blaydes
114 - Paul Hitchcock      (fell, remounted)
182 - Rudy Laurer         (fell)

Junior Main Event
 34 - Destin Cantrell             10
 39 - Troy McConnell              10
142 - Ricky Wells               20
  2 - Skyler Greyson              40
 27 - Krystal Cramer             30
  3 - Justin Boyle                40   (non starter)

Handicap Main Event
216 - Kitt Nay                  20
  6 - Shawn McConnell             40
 15 - Dukie Ermolenko             40
  4 - Josh Larsen                 50
 36 - Ryan Fisher                 50
166 - Andy Northrup               40
  9 - Mike Faria                  50
 17 - Robbie Sauer              20

Scratch Main Event  (restarted)
  9 - Mike Faria
 36 - Ryan Fisher
 15 - Dukie Ermolenko
  4 - Josh Larsen
  3 - Gary Hicks


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