I’d say ‘largely’, there are some skills around learning how to work a race tire, chassis loading, setup changes, that you don’t get running rentals, but the seat time is still valuable.
Chenwi, here’s our experience with being new to karting. I respect Dom’s opinion, but we went a different route and it worked out for us.
I took my son to K1 3 years ago when he was 9. Just to see if he enjoyed it before spending $ on a race kart. He did really well and lapped the field. Went back a couple more times and same thing. And he became bored with it. He said he wanted to race, not run laps and weave in and out of traffic. So I took a chance and we got a cadet kart with an lo206. And we haven’t regretted it one second.
You’re older and would probably have more competition so that might not be applicable to you. At least trying K1 and seeing how you like it is a good idea. But if you decide to get a racing kart, I highly recommend going LO206.
You’ll have a lot more options on where you can race in your area with the 206. Dixon, Davis, Stockton and Prairie City are within a reasonable distance. You would be in the senior class ages 15 and up. There are good turnouts for that class at those tracks.
KA100 is growing but requires more maintenance and cost than 206. And jumping into a 20hp kart is probably not a good idea for a rookie.
Simraceway in Sonoma is where most of the 2 stroke guys race, but from what I’ve seen those classes do not get a good turnout at the tracks I mentioned earlier.
Yes kart racing can be expensive, but doesn’t always have to be. We got started in a ready to race kart for 2k. I have a friend that just picked up a full size italkart that’s a few years old ready to race with a 206 for $1500.
Spec tires at the local tracks are evinco blues. They’re hard and you can put a ton of laps on them before you wear them out. I’ve heard of guys going a full season on 2 sets. They’re $200 a set.
As for maintenance on the 206, it’s fairly simple and something you can quickly learn. Change oil frequently. Most do that every race day, but that’s only $8 if you go with briggs 4t. Keep the air filter clean. Drain fuel from carb after every day you run it. Adjust valves and float height. Plenty of videos on YouTube about that. And those are things you don’t have to do that often. Clutches are about $150 and we’ve ran them for a year without replacing.
After the initial purchase the biggest cost for us has been entry fees and practice fees. We typically spend around $100 to $150 a race day and that includes lunch, and gas for the truck.
Good luck to you. Which ever way you decide to go, you’ll have a blast.
Yeppers. Was just hoping to soften the blow for Mom and Dad. My thinking was start there, then go for the big ask after he’s showed it’s more than a passing fancy.
That’s a smart idea. Most people who end up getting a two-stroke right away, find that the learning curve is higher than what they expected, and then end up disappearing after two seasons or so, because the ballache…