Flipping Tires Between Sessions?

How many of you remove, flip and re-install the tire on rims between sessions on a race day to even out tire wear? Is this a good practice or not recommended?

I’m too lazy to do it all the time. I just flip after the inside wears out.

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I have found, when I flip tires on rims I just go slower. I generally just run tires in reverse in 206 and move left to right every other racer weekend.

What Burpo said…

No need to flip between sessions. Just flip them when you start to use up the inside edge. Note: You will not get as much out of the 2nd edge. If you got 2 race days out of the first edge, better just plan on one day out of the 2nd edge.

FWIW, I do what Ronald does and rotate left to right often during the cycle as most tracks wear out one side quicker than the other on the kart.

When we were racing American spun wheels, I would buy fronts with equal offsets. Then you didn’t have to dismount tires to get to the 2nd edge. Just take wheel off flip it around and put it back on.


It depends on how severe the camber burn is. But generally flipping is fine for breaking in engines or seat time if you’re just getting started.

Otherwise you’ll probably find yourself flipping a lot if you want to do it in a way that doesn’t impair performance.

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I try to rotate tires side to side 1 week and the the following week I will unmount tires and flip them around. Some people say the tires are directional but I was told by a MG rep they aren’t, so like anything make your own choices.


On a square-profile tire like an MG you may run into issues if you flip them after they’ve been cambered in a lot.

I’ll recount my painful memory of flipping my MG Yellows at the Pro Tour race at Miller for the final… I was a missile for two laps, running 2nd. Then I faded rapidly to 20th as the tires all overheated and I lost all grip from running on the tiny contact patch the camber had made when the tires were flipped the other way around.

Also of note, I once saw one of my main rivals for the win at USPKS at South Bend had flipped his tires for the final. My dad and I both noted it on the grid and just smirked to each other. Guy dropped like a rock during the race.


TJ and James bring up good points. I assumed we were talking about club racing and maximizing tire life (thats what I get for assuming). You would not do this and expect performance to be same as new tires. However, flipping is often better than running a worn out edge. Also, I had not thought about tire profile. Most of my experience is on a very rounded profile (Bridgestone, Hoosier, stretched out Vegas, etc). A square profile tire would absolutely be more prone to the contact patch issue TJ explained.

I would still try it on a practice day and/or a club race to see how your experience compares.

Always good to learn and gather info on here. Glad they weighed in too.

I’m on Hoosiers, which have a more rounded profile. The reason I’m flipping tires is to extract the best performance from the tires during race day and not for maximizing life. I’ve always assumed that flipping is better but low on the TODO list with marginal return in lap time. This season, I’ve been switching back and forth between flipping and not and haven’t seen any real differences until last race, where the kart lost 2 or 3 tenths in the main but there were other changes that were made, so I can’t exclusively blame flipping.

Rounded vs square edge tires.
If I flip, I do it every session, else the tires does have too much camber wear and the feel isn’t right for 2 or 3 laps. In reality, it’s probably heat cycles that have the most deleterious affect on tire performance and flipping tires doesn’t really address this.

If I’m looking to maximize performance on race day, I never flip the tires on the rim, only swap wheel/tire combo from side to side (provided your rules allow for tires to run non-directionally).

I’ll flip the tires on the rim to maximize tread life for practice days.


With MG yellows, how many of you guys have used them the wrong direction by just switching sides of the kart? Does it make any difference in how the tire works, or do anything to them they’re not designed to handle? I’d be a little suspicious if the tires are labeled to go a certain way by the factory, but if it works, it’d be good to know.

A rep from MG told me that the rotation arrows are a recommendation but can be used in either direction.
I figure if anyone is going to tell me to follow the direction of rotation it woulld be them. However, as mentioned above the performance my not be the best, especially after first changing the rotation.

I heard rumor that the arrow was important for the first couple heat cycles, but then it didn’t matter after that. I chalked that up to karting folklore as I have never found a straight answer. Out of habit, I mount all my tires up as right sides. If it does make a difference, I want the ones with the arrow in the correct direction to be on the right every time I rotate left to right.

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