Pickens tops Badger Angell Park field

Michael PickensBy Bryan Gapinski Sun Prairie, Wis., June 15, 2008---New Zealand's Michael Pickens topped the 30-lap Badger Midget Series feature,Sunday Night at Angell Park Speedway. The victory extended Pickens streak to five consecutive seasons with at least one series feature.
Australian Matt Smith, running his first event this season in the US, paced the initial seven laps, before being passed for the lead by teammate Mike Hess. Two cautions between laps 9-11, kept the field close to Hess. Pickens passed Hess for the lead on the 13th lap, but Hess regained the lead before the start/finish line.
One lap later fast qualifier Jerry Coons Jr. drove under Pickens and Hess, passing both in one move exiting turn four for the lead. Pickens re-passed Coons for the lead on a lap 18 restart. Coons' engine began to misfire one lap later, and retired from the event running in second position on lap 22, during a caution for debris.
Pickens driving the Hans Lein owned Spike/Ford-Esslinger#2 maintained his length lead over Hess during the final eight laps, and finished 1.63 seconds ahead of Hess. Brandon Waelti, Bobby East and Davey Ray completed the top five. Coons holds a seven point lead over Hess heading into the 7th annual Knoxville Midget Nationals presented by Iowa Telecom at Knoxville (Iowa) Raceway on June 20-21. Hess was the events inaugural winner in 2002, while Coons won the event, two years later. 

QUAL       HT 1   B FEAT   A FEAT  
1 5 COONS 14.859 1 SMITH 1 WIPPERFURTH 1 PICKENS
2 2 PICKENS 14.914 2 EAST 2 R.RAY 2 HESS
3 4X EAST 15.057 3 GOUGH 3 HATTON 3 WAELTI
4 4 HESS 15.202 4 D.RAY 4 D.RAY 4 EAST
5 19 WIPPERFURTH 15.21 5 LUNDGREEN 5 LUNDGREEN 5 D.RAY
6 21S D.RAY 15.246 HT 2   6 DESELLE 6 SMITH
7 15 HATTON 15.304 1 PICKENS 7 KEELAN 7 LUNDGREEN
8 43 LUEBKE 15.401 2 NOBLE 8 MAYHEW 8 FISCUS
9 14 GOUGH 15.428 3 LUEBKE 9 HOEGSTED 9 WIPPERFURTH
10 86 ALLGAIER 15.437 4 WIPPERFURTH 10 FISCUS 10 LUEBKE
11 3R R.RAY 15.449 5 R.RAY 11 ALLGAIER 11 R.RAY
12 21K MAYHEW 15.453 HT 3 12 LEJEUNE 12 GOUGH
13 7 FISCUS 15.488 1 COONS 13 DULL 13 DESELLE
14 17 KEELAN 15.528 2 HESS 14 DULL
15 14AU SMITH 15.539 3 WAELTI 15 COONS
16 3 WAELTI 15.559 4 HATTON 16 ALLGAIER
17 34 LEJEUNE 15.612 5 ALLGAIER 17 NOBLE
18 41 LUNDGREEN 15.708   18 MAYHEW
19 57 DESELLE 15.801 19 HATTON
20 31 BUDRES 16.191 20 KEELAN
21 97 HOEGSTED 16.366 21 HOEGSTED
22 56 DULL 16.759
23 71 NOBLE 17.208
24 5W WALTERS NT