AUSSIE HOPE: Former Australian champion Nathan Smee will challenge the Americans in the World Midget Championship rounds at Lismore Speedway this season.
AUSSIE HOPE: Former Australian champion Nathan Smee will challenge the Americans in the World Midget Championship rounds at Lismore Speedway this season. JO RICHARDS

Giants of the Midgets to hit Lismore

SOME of the best Midget car drivers in the United States will contest the two rounds of the World Championship at Lucas Oil Lismore Speedway this season.

The contracted driver line-up is headed by Chris Bell, the 2013 winner of the one of the biggest races in the US, the Belleville Midget Nationals.

Bell, from Oklahoma, is enjoying a boom season and leads the United States Auto Club (USAC) points standings in the chase for the American championship which concludes next month.

Jerry Coons jnr, from Arizona, who has raced in Australia before with great success, will also represent the US, while top-rated Brian Clauson from Indiana and Darren Hagen from California complete the quartet.

Hagen is the defending USAC National Midget champion, while Clauson won the USAC-sanctioned American Sprintcar Championship last year.

Andrew Felker of Missouri will compete in the Lismore world title rounds as an independent after committing to a racing stint in Brisbane.

The US drivers participating in the World Championship were announced in New Zealand yesterday in the countdown to the opening title rounds at Auckland's Western Springs Speedway in December.

After completing the NZ leg of the world title their cars will be shipped to Australia for the two rounds at the Brisbane International Speedway (January 25 and 26) before heading to Lismore for two rounds on January 31 and February 1.

The Australian challenge will be headed by national champions Nathan Smee and Adam Clarke, while Australian Speedcar Grand Prix winner Matt Smith is also contracted for every round of the World Championship, which concludes with a mid-western American swing in 2014.

Early indications are Kiwi international star Michael Pickens will head the New Zealand entry list.



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