Uncle Sam will turn on the style at Owlerton

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SAM Ermolenko, one of the most entertaining riders in speedway history, will be in the USA Tourists pits to help them in tonight’s clash with Sheffield at Owlerton (7.45).

Ermolenko, who had a brief spell with Sheffield in 1996, is to offer his expertise and knowledge for the tourists who have been good entertainment in their meetings so far. And the 1993 world champion is hoping one of the tourists will follow in the footsteps of the newly crowned world number one Greg Hancock, who lifted the title for a second time in Poland at the weekend.

He said: “Greg’s story is truly remarkable, at the age of 41 to beat the best in the world on a consistent basis is unbelievable and I am so pleased for him.

“Greg did the same as me, as a young man he came over from California and struggled on tracks like Sheffield but look at him now.

“These guys can look at Greg for inspiration and see what can be achieved, but they know they are going to have to make sacrifices and have a life changing experience to realise their dreams.

“I’m sure they will find Sheffield daunting at first because back home in California they are more accustomed to the smaller tracks, of course. I’m sure it will be a good night with plenty of entertaining racing and I look forward to working with the guys.”

Both sides include nine riders and there will be 18 heats rather than the usual 15 race format.

The meeting signals the end of the Owlerton season and a firework display will follow immediately afterwards.