Auckland speedway driver Brad Mosen expects a tough battle defending his New Zealand Midget Championship title at WXC Speedway Western Springs tonight.

The 28-year-old won the right to wear the prestigious 1NZ in Christchurch last year, but with fellow Aucklander Michael Pickens in top form, he admits retaining it tonight would be even more special.

"Winning last year's title was 10 years in the making but, to be honest, we were really on form and I kind of expected to win it, so [it] was more of a relief than pure adrenaline fuelled celebration," said Mosen. "This year, we are not coming in as the favourite to win, so if we did, it would cement our place as the best team out there."

Mosen has a number of trophies in his collection but he's not driven by wall pieces.


"My natural competitiveness has always been the sole reason I want to win. Titles are awesome but I just want to win when the bragging rights are on the line," he said. "We haven't been at our best lately but we've made some changes to the car and gone back to what seems to work for us, so I'm just ready to go at it with Pickens tonight."

Pickens is a six-time New Zealand champion and goes into tonight's race as the overwhelming TAB favourite at $1.80. Having won the Australian Midget Championship in Sydney last week, he hopes to make history by becoming the first driver to win both transtasman titles in one year.

Also on show at Western Springs tonight will be sprint cars, TQ midgets, F2 midgets and Kiwi Kidz. Gates open at 4pm with the first race from 6.15pm.

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