LOOKING BACK: Pickens Shines In Clauson Tribute

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LOOKING BACK: Pickens Shines
Michael Pickens won the 2017 Bryan Clauson Tribute Night at Western Springs Speedway. (Jeremy Ward/www.shot360.co.nz photo)

EDITOR’S NOTE: With a lack of racing on-track due to the recent coronavirus pandemic around the globe, Sprint Car & Midget is digging into the archives and reflecting on notable races from the past.

Today, we look back on the 2017 Bryan Clauson Tribute Night for the United Truck Parts International Midget Series at Western Springs Speedway in Auckland, New Zealand.

AUCKLAND, New Zealand – Michael Pickens put on a performance that the late Bryan Clauson likely would have been proud of to win the Bryan Clauson Tribute Night midget feature at Western Springs Speedway on New Year’s Day in 2017.

Pickens had to advance into the feature from the B-Main, but once he got to the main event he outclassed everyone else in attendance, driving through the field to win the race over American Spencer Bayston and Hayden Williams.

Following the 39-lap feature – in honor of Clauson’s longtime iconic car number – an emotional Pickens was hardly able to address the crowd in victory lane, nearly overcome in talking about what the win meant to him.

Bayston settled for second, just ahead of Hayden Williams, American Tyler Thomas and Brock Maskovich.

The Sunday-night special was part of the annual International Midget Series.

Prior to the start of the racing program, a special ceremony was held in the infield with Clauson’s race car that he competed with in New Zealand in years past.

The finish:

Michael Pickens, Spencer Bayston, Hayden Williams, Tyler Thomas, Brock Maskovich, Peter Hunnibell, Leon Burgess, Brad Mosen, Alex Bright, Zach Daum, Michael Brunt, Taylor Clarke, Troy Ware, James Earl, Scott Buckley, James Cossey, Zane Stanton, Shayne Alach, Adam Clarke, Carl Worboys.

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