Little things make a big difference

Circa 1965, I was in the first week of owning my brand new Bug Scorpion with 2 MC100’s on board. The kart had yet to get the slip clutches so the drive was direct engine to axle. A local 1/3 mile race track had communicated with the company I had purchased my kart from to invite a few karter’s to put on a half time display of karts on their track,

So there I was on the track with the guy I bought my kart from to pick up the back end of my kart and give me a running start to get my engines running. ( Pick up the kart back end take a couple running steps and drop the kart and push).

There was one single engine sprint kart and two enduro karts and me on the track. Mine was the only twin engine sprint kart.

As it developed my kart was a whole bunch quicker than the other three and in the three lap I ran I lapped all three of the other karts and was clocked within one second of the super modified sprint cars that ran there regularly. Yup, my little machine was pretty quick.

So here is why I only ran three laps: Unbeknownst to me the spark plug access hole rubber plug in the sheet metal engine cooling assembly had come out of its position and the cooling air was coming out of that hole in the sheet metal rather than blowing across the cylinder head.

So, I was on the back straight running, it was estimated at about 80mph, when that engine which had almost no cylinder head cooling, seized. To me all I had was the sound of silence coming from my power plant. Recall if you will, that I said that the slip clutches were on order but hadn’t arrived.

I will never understand how I got that kart stopped with the back wheels locked solid from the speed I was going and didn’t hit either wall. It peeled one of the back tires and flat spotted the other so I had to buy both rear tires. That was one of the most terrifying events in my entire life.

At that time the repair of the seized engine cost me $11.00. Probably a bit more today, eh?

Of course that was only one week into owning a go kart so I got over the trauma and loved every event in the two years I ran that kart. It developed into some of the most exciting driving experiences I have ever had.

I was told that from the moment that they got us started, the folks who had headed for the food truck all ran back to the grand stand to see what all of the ruckus was on the track. 5 Gokart engines make a powerful statement. The owner of the track was less than pleased with the evenings reduced food sales so we were NOT invited back. Too bad, I would have loved to have had the chance to drive on the oval again.

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I like this story. Bummer the track owner was cheesed off tho.