How many sprint karters are there in USA?

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(Paul Montopoli) #1

I thought I would try to crowdsource an answer to the age old question of how many active kart racers there are in the USA.

My approach is to ask everyone to reply with the series or club track at which you race and provide the “average” number or range of karters per class present on race day.

As an example, I race at the F Series in the northeast and there are regularly the following number of karts participating. I am primarily interested in “sizing” the sprint (non-oval) 2 cycle / 4 cycle market in the USA, but road race karting numbers would also be interesting. That maybe a bit of a tougher nut to crack as I believe there are more multi-class participants in road racing.

F Series - classes

F125 (Leopard only) - 22-30 entries/race
Mini Rok 10-15
Formula Jr Tag 12-22
Formua Tag 15-40
Tag Cadet 10-15
Shifter Stock Honda / Rok / KZ 15-30

Let me know what you think and I will share a final estimate with all.


(James McMahon) #2

I like the idea of crowdsourcing this…

You could also base the research on speedhive numbers since most sprint tracks are on there. Not all, but it’s probably the closest we’ll get to getting a good number.

Roadracing might be a little easier in that there’s about 22 events in a year. I’m almost certain they are all in MyLaps/Speedhive.


(Paul Montopoli) #3

I started doing that and completed it for all the tracks in the northeast that I know of. I came up with 685 active kart racers from MD to NY to NH. Problem is I don’t know all the tracks in other places and I probably missed one or two in the northeast. My guess is 5-6k active karters in the US.


(James McMahon) #4

Nice work.

I think it’s more like 15-20K, but that’s not really based on hard data. Of course orgs aren’t super open to sharing the numbers… I bet insurance companies have the most complete data… but again, not sure how willing they would be to share it.

There are around 3000 in the Briggs Weekly Racing Series alone though:

If you are feeling ambitious, there’s a list of tracks here: tracks.kartpulse.com
It’s the most comprehensive one that I know of, but it is due some re-checking.


(Paul Montopoli) #5

Thanks. I have cheap labor that needs something to do.


(Andy Kutscher) #6

OVKA - approx 150 active members
KRA - approx 280 active members.

Numbers based on 2018 final points which are only counted for active members. Doesn’t necessarily reflect total Karters in our area as some race as non-members and don’t accumulate points.


(Paul Montopoli) #7

Thanks. Just so I know where are KRA and OVKA? And is there much cross over participation between the two organizations. I will gross up your numbers a bit to account for non-members.


(Andy Kutscher) #8

Sorry - OVKA is Ohio Valley Karting Association, we race at G&J Kartway in Camden Ohio.

KRA - Kart Racers of America, this is the club that runs at New Castle.

The two tracks are about an hour apart. While I’d say there is some participation overlap between the two, I think looking at active member counts is the best way to eliminate that since many weekends they run events on the same dates…hence members that are competing for points are generally going to be a member of one or the other and participating as non-members at the other club’s events.


(Don Westlie) #9

I thought I had saved a page from an old National Kart News which had a good demographic layout. Can not find it. It would have been old data any way but it was interesting.

RIGP has some data I found but it is estimated. I would bet that Dave Klaus @BriggsRacing has some very detailed info. Maybe we could get him to share

RIGP Sponsorship


(James McMahon) #10

Looks like that data for the rock came from KMI, it’s prob pretty dated, but still pretty interesting. I believe that was run by

500 tracks is a bit high though. When I did the deep dive in 2015 there was about 120 sprint, 180 dirt and circa 100 indoor/concession.

@TJ_Halsema I’m sure has some great insights too.

Digging this topic though. Let’s keep it going.


(Morgan Schuler) #11

The Rock Island data was a result of Kart Expo International and the work Darrel Sitarz put in. It’s old but I don’t think the numbers are too far off.

The entire karting community really needs another Expo like that where all stakeholders are under one building for a long weekend.


(Nik Goodfellow) #12

I have a digital copy of the NKN media kit.

They claim;
NKNs readership - 20,000+ per issue
Estimated number of karting enthusiasts (what ever that means) 40k+
Percentage of participants - Sprint Racing 64%

It also splits them up by age, gender, career background, vehicle ownership, location and annual miles driven.


(Paul Montopoli) #13

Interesting. Circulation numbers are notoriously over estimated as that is/was how publisher came up with ad pricing. I am going track by track with a heavy dose of WAGging and if you use the 120 sprint track number and realize that very few tracks have more than 100 regular participants (take 70 as an optimistic but good avg per track), then you are looking at max 8400.


(James McMahon) #14

What’s very interesting about that is the fact that there’s 3000 people on 206s racing.

Have Briggs really grabbed 28% of the market?


(Eric Gunderson) #15

This is a very clever idea to obtain data hard to capture!

In our region, our average attendance is 85-110 drivers across categories. In addition to this id estimate we have 20-30 karters who participate in other regions or are not very active, but are based here (Colorado).


(Paul Montopoli) #16

Part of it may be definition. I am considering only “active racers” as those who have raced in more than 1 race in a series. This knocks the numbers down a bit.

In the Northeast, in my calc, it is 27% 4-stroke and in the southeast (FL, GA, NC, SC) it is 34% 4-stroke. This is as far as I have gotten so far.


(Nik Goodfellow) #17

This is probably where it would easier if the US had an ASN to hand out licenses. The UK have tracked those for ages and its falling but some of that loss is to “Independent Karting”, where all the track set their own rules and get their own insurance (US model).

Anyway UK numbers used to be around 6000 and I think have dropped to 3000 licensed participants. But assuming there’s probably still 6000 people karting and using some shady math, there should be about 30,000 participants racing in the US (0.009% of the population). That’s not including non-racing spring track, rental tracks, theme parks and all the other entry points that euro style karting as an industry tends to ignore.