EKN Article: ACCUS drops the ball once again with karting

Wondering what other’s thoughts are on this situation and article from David Cole at EKN.
Have a read and drop your comments below. I’ll share mine after a few have chimed in.


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Here’s an even better idea: Bring the Grid Girls back.

Thanks for highlighting this. I also commented on this on the facebook gp Americas page.

What a disgrace.

I guess they don’t like money?? Seems like the biggest opportunity missed out would be the biggest wallets in America. If they announced that the top 3-4 drivers in the Jr Division from every national level U.S. karting championship were going to be featured at next years F1 Race in Austin - featured as a revamped “U.S. STARZ of Karting Junior Championship” — Relevant US Karting Sponsors would have a great opportunity to be featured in front of millions of fans. Chassis sponsor provides all the chassis - Motor sponsor as well. How about kids getting to feel like the rockstars that most in the karting community already know they are - but others within the motorsports world may not have known about? Total missed opportunity for all parties that SHOULD be involved. Such a shame.


I guess I don’t fully understand his problem with ACCUS. Shouldn’t his displeasure be with the sanctioning bodies, weather it’s SKUSA, IKF, WKA,etc, for not applying to be the official ACCUS karting partner?

Its not likely that they would have known if there was any opprtunity to put something together. I think the actions by COTA et al show it was not even an afterthought to get top level karting involved. Dont forget that SKUSA is IKF now, and they have had plenty on their plates figuring out all of the acquisition and regional club support structure this year. WKA couldnt even field enough competitors to warrant a track to even run a race and had to reschedule, so how would they conduct a national top driver program?

I have to agree with David Cole. This move was just shameless self promotion for their own facility at the cost of a - in my opinion - struggling sport right now. Theyve relegated the future of American F1 drivers to what amounts to some kids off school in summer whose parents can get them a ton of laps at the rental track in the middle of nowhere. Simultaneously theyve taken a really neat facility and have seemingly withheld it from competition racing. They took their ball and went home for a few extra rentals at their multibillion dollar race facility, and Im guessing provided no next step into competitive karting to the kids who do show up and have an interest.

Its a damn shame.

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I think this is a good example of us having to get outside of our own little “Pro Kart Racing” bubble. In the eye of the general public, rental karting isn’t much different to what we do.

The entitlement in some parts of the “pro” kart racing community is astonishing at times. For some reason, a handful of people seem to think that others should put in time and money to promote our sport out of the good of their heart. It’s not going to happen. There needs to be a value exchange.

ACCUS and COTA owe karting exactly zero. They are entitled to promote karting (or not) in whatever manner they choose. This time, they are going with rental karts and a public effort which is order of magnitude more interesting to the public. Yep it’s about money too, no doubt.

The bottom line is that “pro” kart racing doesn’t have an offer for this. Therefore, it’s not reasonable to expect it to happen. It’s not a lost opportunity… there was no opportunity to begin with as far as I can tell.

Not a single comment that I’ve read that’s been critical of ACCUS and/or COTA has bothered to come up with something that would be good FOR THEM. That right there is the crux of the problem. People in karting only think about what’s in it for karting.

Let’s be honest, this doesnt impact US’ ability to get to F1. The main factor there is money. That’s not sour grapes, that’s reality. It takes millions to get there.

It’s not even ACCUS’ ball to drop… it’s karting… Why (Assuming it would actually benefit the sport in some way) do we not have representation?

Now as to why ACCUS is not linked with a karting series other than USAC Karting, I cannot say. But I did comment on EKN’s page to see if they could get more information on why, and what it would take.

We need to stop expecting others to promote karting when they have little to no incentive to do so. We either work to promote it ourselves and/or work to incentivize others to promote it… But you can’t complain that they aren’t promoting it when there’s no incentive for them to do so :smiley:

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Here’s my comment on EKNs facebook page about ACCUS and karting partnership(s)

“If” this situation (Having no karting ASN for under ACCUS) is due to karting’s dysfunction… how is that a slap in the face though? That’s on us as a collective.

Do we know from ACCUS the rationale behind not having a designated ASN for karting and/or what the criteria are?

To be fair, COTA and ACCUS are promoting karting, just not “our” form of it. What they are doing makes a better, more interesting story to the general public who don’t know or care about the micro niches. A kart is a kart to them.

We have to be honest with ourselves and ask “What makes our form of karting (SKUSA, WKA, USPKS etc etc) any “better” for the general public or the businesses involved with this deal”… from their perspective not ours.

Well that and follow the money with criteria like:
“Most laps recorded at COTA Karting from now until September 3”

I think a followup article based on a conversation with ACCUS regarding karting in the US could interesting. I can’t comment on how candid they would be… You guys would know better.

I agree with all of your points James. The issue is there are so few people now in the karting community who could bring together a way to incentivize a track/governing body that is paying tens of millions of dollars just to host a single F1 race each year with anything karting related. Rentals are clearly lucrative, but nothing on the scale of what that track puts out for its major racing events (ROI on those events is unclear).

I don’t know that there is any solution other than them treating karting at large as a charity case. Unless the Kutschers of the world are willing to shell out huge money to throw a one-off event there. Nobody else has close to the organizational and financial clout. Thus, any heed COTA/ACCUS pays to competitive karting would be a really long-term and ethereal payback prospect. In theory, the benefit would be fostering a love of motorsports, and propping up current and future stars. The real benefit would be adding to the profile of the best we have to offer, and maybe in a decade they find their way to an F1 seat. All of this is incredibly unlikely, though.

The biggest issue I have is the way it relegates karting as a sideshow. It cheapens the product to even pretend these kids have the kind of motivation, money, and mobility to ever sniff F1, and presents them as the next best thing in US motorsports. It’s a weird message, and the whole program is selfserving, as one would expect. It just comes off as a sham, which irritates me more than the fact that they ignored current top level drivers.

That said, I’m sure the kids will have fun. The experience and spectacle - outside of any racing - will be great for even the uninterested. Good for the ones who get chosen! Just sorry for any kids not in Austin.

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