Current New Zealand Midget champion Michael Pickens will have the backing of Stadium Finance as he heads into the New Zealand summer Speedway season. Pickens will be competing with a brand new Sprintcar and gunning for the much coveted NZ Sprintcar title.
“We are currently putting together both a brand-new car and engine for the coming season,” Pickens said. “Due to the current coronavirus travel restrictions, we will be getting around the country more and running in more races than we usually are.
“I'm super excited to welcome Stadium Finance to the Michael Pickens Racing team. This partnership allows us to take our racing program to the next level and be even more competitive every time we hit the track.
“This season we are very focused on putting our CRC/Stadium Finance sprintcar in victory lane by winning as many races as possible and putting on a great show for the fans while doing it!”
Tony Gosling, Stadium Finance founder, is equally excited about the partnership.
"I've been following Michael's career for several years now and I finally had the opportunity to meet him earlier this year while he was racing at Ruapuna Speedway," commented Gosling. “That night, Pickens took out the New Zealand Midgetcar title and the win, meaning a record ninth national title.
"A mistake saw Michael fail to finish the third heat, but his class performance in the next two heats was really impressive. His ability to perform under pressure and his sheer talent is admirable.
"When Michael approached us about this partnership, there was no doubt in my mind that it was a great synergy. Not only is he talented, but he's just a genuine guy who is passionate about the sport and his fans."
Pickens will have the #2NZ on his Sprintcar having finished runner up last season and will look to change this to #1NZ.
“There are a number of important factors required to win the sprintcar title,” Pickens remarked. “You’ve got to stay super clean, make no mistakes and be at the pointy end when it counts. It is such a super competitive class and you have to be able to deal with lapped traffic, keep the emotions in check and be able to hit your marks right on the night.”
The two-night NZ Sprintcar Champs takes place on the 8th/9th January at Bay Park Speedway in Tauranga.