TAG 125 racers Braden Clark and Hayden Millington teamed up earlier this month for the season ending Shamick Racing 4.5-hour enduro.
Clark and Millington had both had strong results across the 2022 season but were going up against some more fancied rivals which included multiple state, national and Bathurst 1000 champions. The 2-driver team utilised Saturday to get up to speed as much as possible before Sunday morning qualifying!
Millington hit the track 1st for qualifying as the lighter of the 2 drivers. Hayden pushed extremely hard and was setting good pace in the tough high-quality field. Millington landed in position 21 overall handing the kart over to Clark. Braden being the heavier of the 2 drivers put his best foot forward but had multiple lighter drivers in his session. Clark landed in position 36 overall which had the team out of 31st spot for the main event.
Clark started the race and his main strategy was to move forward across his stint and stay out of trouble. Braden missed the opening lap drama and slowly moved forward across his stint. Clark did a long 71 lap opening stint and was sitting in 3rd position before pulling into the pits and handing over the kart to Hayden.
Millington continued the team’s strategy of staying out of trouble and trying to make up positions across the stint. Hayden had made his way forward on the edge of the top 20 when karts started to take their next round of stops. Millington did a marathon second stint resulting in 90 laps behind the wheels and taking the race lead before his 2nd stop.
Hayden pulled into the pits and handed the kart back to Clark to continue the team’s strong race. Braden emerged from the pits in position 12 overall and the team were working their way into the race on strategy and excellent driving. As the pit stops continued and racing was on, Clark made his way into the top 10 and then into the top 5, and was looking like a strong result was on. Braden did another near 80 lap stint when the rain came and the team were able to take their final compulsory stop.
Millington jumped back aboard the 18 kart and due to being able to put wets on in the final stop, the team came back out in the effective race lead. The final stint was full of nerves and adrenaline as Hayden was leading the race and having to try and hold out the charge from former and current state champions Jace Lindstrom and Harrison Hoey. In a tense final stint, Millington was able to hold his nerve and cross the line in 1st position!
In unfortunate and heart-breaking circumstances, the team were giving a post-race penalty for their drivers being in the kart over 60 minutes. This relegated the 18 kart down to position 13 overall.
Braden’s father Graham spoke post weekend on the team work and excellent driving across the event. “We went into the event with a plan to execute. Our priority was to make sure both drivers felt refreshed and this worked with Braden coming into the pits for the final time in a strong position. Hayden did an amazing final stint and the moment we crossed the line to celebrate with our family and team was something we won’t forget. Unfortunately, a post-race penalty went against us but I can’t thank both Braden and Hayden enough for the thrill. A big thank you to our pit crew and team Ashton Cattach, Clay Devlin, Taylem Mackinlay, Josh Clay, Tony Burt and Rebekah Clark. Scott (Hayden’s father) and myself can’t thank you all enough and we look forward to coming back again next year”.