NASCAR star Kyle Larson headlines a 10-strong international field for the International Midget Series starting on Boxing Day at Springs Speedway in Auckland.
Seven American peddlers and three Australians will take on the best of the Kiwis in one of the strongest fields ever assembled.
Larson, the 27-year-old from California, returns for a fifth visit to New Zealand this summer. The winner of the 2018-19 NASCAR All-Star race has amassed 10 International Midget Series wins including a sweep of the 2012/13 schedule. He won both the World Midget 30-lapper and BC39 features at Western Springs last season, finishing second to Michael Pickens on Boxing Night and was well in contention before crashing in the 50-lapper.
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Joining Larson are the other five Americans that contested last year's series, including Christopher Bell, who may well be the best midget racer on the planet. Bell claimed victory in the World Midget 50-lapper and will this year join Larson in racing in NASCAR. The 25-year-old has won three-straight Chilli Bowl titles in the United States and will be the favourite Down Under.
Tyler Courtney, Chris Windom, Logan Seavey and Zach Daum (all US) return this summer while Australians Kaidon Brown, Travis Mills and Robert Heard will all make the trip to Auckland.
The new addition is Zeb Wise, who is tipped to be the next big thing in dirt racing. Fifth in USAC Midget points, the teenager recorded three USAC Midget wins including the prestigious American BC39 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway dirt track.
The international drivers will take on the best of the local drivers with Pickens returning from his controversial suspension to battle the world's best. Hayden Williams and Aaron Hodgson will continue their season-long battle as well.
"It is an awesome field," promoter Bill Buckley told the Herald. "These guys are a collection of literally the best midget racers in the world and they are all going to be hell-bent on winning at a place they enjoy racing.
"The battle between the likes of Bell, Larson and Pickens will be worth the price of admission alone.
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"Aucklanders love Boxing Night at Western Springs and we are expecting a big crowd to attend."
Sprint cars, TQs, F2 Midgets and Quarter Midgets will all feature in what is generally considered the biggest night of the year.
Gates open at 4pm with racing starting at approximately 5.45pm.