Michael Pickens leads the field after night 1 of the Australian Speedcar Title (Phil Michell Photo)
After winning all three of his heat races on night 1 of the Australian Speedcar Championship at the Murray Machining and Sheds Murray Bridge Speedway New Zealand’s Michael Pickens tops the score chart with a perfect score of 75 points. Pickens was simply sensational throughout the night in the Brett Morris owned #N71 King / Esslinger and going into the final round of heats on Saturday he enjoys a 9 point lead over his nearest rival Troy Jenkins.
Jenkins, who ended the night with two heat victories is a further 6 points a head of American super star Dave Darland, who also recorded two heat wins, with Nathan Smee and newly crowned South Australian Dayne Kingshott rounding out the top five.
Anthony Chaffey, who was in fine form, currently sits in sixth with the top 10 being rounded out by Victorian Travis Mills, former New Zealander Scott Farmer, American Alex Bright and youngster Kaidon Brown.
With the track in perfect condition, despite the near 40 degree temperatures in the late afternoon, the racing was of the highest quality with three wide racing and exciting passes all night long. The heat races were pretty well caution free, other than the ocassional spin, but heat 11 proved to hard to complete with a number of cars ending upside down.
The main casualty was New Zealand’s Hayden Williams, who rolled in turn three after contact with Darland as they battled for the lead. The accident was deemed a racing incident with Darland going on to win the heat.
Points after Night 1 (Top 15 of 40) – Pickens 75, Jenkins 66, Darland 60, Smee 56, Kingshott 54, Chaffey 53, Mills 51, Farmer 49, Bright 48, Brown 42, Rowe 42, Ramsey 41, Williams40, Wigzell 40, Guadagnino 38.