Pickens Reigns In Shortened Baypark Midget Feature

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Michael Pickens, seen here celebrating a victory in America in 2017, rolled to his second midget win in as many races on Friday in New Zealand. (Jim Denhamer photo)

MT. MAUNGANUI, New Zealand – Michael Pickens held off American Chris Windom to score his second-straight United Truck Parts International Midget Series win on Friday at Baypark Family Speedway.

NASCAR Xfinity Series star and two-time Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals victor Christopher Bell dominated most of the feature, which was shortened from its originally-scheduled 40-lap distance due to time constraints, but suffered a late flat tire, ceding the lead to Pickens.

Pickens then led the remaining distance ahead of Windom, reigning AMSOIL USAC National Sprint Car Series champion Tyler Courtney, Australian Matt Smith and Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series regular Kyle Larson.

Zach Daum, Jeremy Webb, Hayden Williams, Shayne Alach and Scott Farmer completed the top 10 at the checkered flag.

The native New Zealander also picked up the victory at Western Springs Speedway on Wednesday. Friday’s win marked his 146th career victory and his 19th with the International Midget Series.