2002 Madison Regatta

Brown guides Miss Elam Plus
to Madison Regatta victory

By Don Ward,

MADISON, Ind. (July 7, 2002) – In a race marked by a dramatic come-from-behind move in the third of five laps, Nate Brown piloted his bright-orange U-16 Miss Elam Plus to victory here in the Budweiser Madison Regatta Presented by Cruisin’ Auto.

Nate Brown - Roundabout Madison Indiana

Photo by Don Ward

Nate Brown After Race

Brown, a former Miss Madison driver, emerged from his craft elated and hugged several crew members on a submerged floating dock before reaching the shore and removing his helmet.
Brown trailed U-99 Miss Troxzilla driver Terry Troxell into across the starting line and into the first turn but finally overcame Troxell in the turn just before the last lap.
“He had the inside lane and I think he tried to hold the inside too long instead of moving out into clean water,” Brown said. “If he had stayed out on clean water with me, it might have been a different story.”
The two drivers held off U-1 Miss Budweiser’s Dave Villwock to third place and the U-9 Miss Bello’s Pizza, driven by former Miss Madison pilot Mike Hanson, to fourth place. Mike Weber in the U-10 Miss EMCOR and Mark Tate in the U-2 Miss Trendwest completed the field. The community owned Oh Boy! O’Berto-Miss Madison, driven by Madison Regatta defending champion Steve David, did not qualify for the final. The hometown boat experienced fuel flow problems and was defeated by Miss Trendwest in the provisional heat.
The Bud team competed without its venerable owner, Bernie Little, who was rushed to the hospital Thursday night, July 4, after suffering an asthma attack. He was transported to Jewish Hospital in Louisville, where he remained throughout the weekend.

Nate Brown - Roundabout Madison Indiana

Photo by Don Ward

Nate Brown Receives Trophy

Villwock also had to contend with Hydro-Prop imposed fuel restrictions as part of the circuit’s new rules to make the sport more competitive. Despite the restrictions, the Miss Budweiser managed two preliminary heat wins and a second place finish. “It was a great race for me because Terry is a good driver and he has a fast boat this year,” Brown said. “And it’s a great day whenever you beat the Bud boat, which has six paid guys and a seven-figure budget.” Like most of the 11 boats on this year’s circuit, Brown’s team has an all-volunteer crew.
Driving the U-16 Miss Elam Plus for the Ellstrom family, Brown notched his third career race victory and third in four consecutive races. He won the final two races of last season – at Seattle and San Diego. It was the fourth career victory for the Ellstrom family.
Brown averaged 138.862 mph. over the 2.5-mile Ohio River course after turning in the top qualifying speed of 151.819 mph in Saturday’s time trials. He started the day with a one-lap penalty in the first heat because he jumped the gun on the start. He came back to win two subsequent heats.
At the season opener in Evansville, Ind., the previous week, Brown was disqualified for nearly causing a collision with the Oh Boy! O’Berto-Miss Madison in the final heat. At Madison, the team endured gearbox problems and had to borrow parts from the Miss Madison squad.
Brown’s team moved into third place with 237 points in the O’Doul’s High Point Season Championship race. Miss Budweiser lead with 291 points, followed by Miss Troxilla with 266 points.

Nate Brown - Roundabout Madison Indiana

Photo by Don Ward

Nate Brown

Madison Regatta vice president Ann Center estimated the crowd attendance at 150,000 over the three days. The Madison Regatta will be televised at 6:30 p.m. (EDT-fast time) on ESPN2 on Saturday, July 27.

2002 Madison Regatta Final Heat Results
1. Miss Elam Plus, Nate Brown, 138.862; 2. Miss Troxilla, Terry Troxell, 137.584; 3. Miss Budweiser, Dave Villwock, 130.878; 4. Miss Bello’s Pizza, Mike Hanson, 125.965; 5. Miss EMCOR, Mike Weber *, 6. Miss Trendwest, Mark Tate, 124.254.
* = one-lap penalty for fuel violation.
Morgan Foods 2.5 litre limited final
1. Wayne Dunlap, Madison Discount Tobacco/W.D. Racing, Madison, Ind.; 2. Beth Gilday, Eastpointe, Mich.; Other local participants: 4. Myron Jackson, Vevay, Ind.; 5. Dan Walls, Bellevue, Ky.

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