We used to run Amateur Night duels whenever only some of us showed up and others of our regular gaming group could not make it - or for whatever reason - it wouldn't make sense to continue the campaign. That didn't matter to us; Amateur Night was fun. On most nights, we chose Stingers, with any of their options. In SHAAG duels*, you got 3D6x$100 over and above whatever the cost limit of the duel and you could use whatever money you saved over the base cost of a stock vehicle from the option you selected in the Stinger to add to you personal equipment total. That generally made the Stinger the most popular Amateur Night vehicle in our group. You could have a pair of MGs and trust your luck to the dice for personal weapons, you could swap for an RR or an RL and get more armor and more money, or you could trade one MG for an HR with some more armor and even more money.
Granted, these were our House Rules - We had played this way for years.
The arena was the Buffalo Municipal Arena (we never played that arena wide-open - one of our group was obsessed with populating it in every duel with every wreck counter, buses and all, in the most diabolic configurations). We always welcomed it! Honestly, I was glad, it made the wide open arena unique every time we duelled.
* - In SHAAG duels every arena also allowed every crew member to check out from the local armory a Light Pistol at no charge if needed - we wanted no one to be unarmed!