Personally, starting with a 206 is a great way to get into the sport, without having to deal with the initial frustration of having to understand how a two-stroke motor works as well.
Classes are pretty popular, so you always have someone to race. The engines are very simple, so they are easy to fix and replace. The kart is slow, so you’re not scared that you’re going to die, and you get to learn most of the karting basics without having to spend money on soft tires and etc etc.
Welcome to karting. Get a 206.
Do you want fun, affordable grassroots racing? You want a 206. Don’t believe me? Just keep reading.
Racing an 206 allowed me to get the seat time that I craved, while spending ample time having fun on the track with my friends. Once I had my first session in the kart, I was enlighted why Briggs and Stratton made this engine formula. Once I had my first race, I was hooked.
There are several great things about the 206 package that I personally find make it one of my favorite packages to race:
Affordable cost to enter- Racing 206 is extremely affordable. . The 206 makes it easy to promote to new people to get into the sport ( which is probably one of the most important things needed in karting right now) . Packages are affordable to purchase brand new. They run on pump gas, and there always is a class for them to race in. For racers who need to manage a budget, or who want to do more events per year, it’s an affordable way for them to be able to practice and compete often. Market prices for a 206 engine and full chassis package are pretty level everywhere, so it’s very easy to get one for a fair price.
Sealed engine package keeps engines easy to work on and fair- Being a sealed engine package prevents people from being able to out spend you to the front of the pack by tweaking the engine with special secrets. You can’t do that with the 206, so you know that the engine you have is the same as what the winners have. Also, a sealed engine package makes it so it limits the number of things that you have to watch and maintain between races. All I do is change the oil, check the bolts for tightness and check the clutch before every race, so it’s dead simple.
Larger fields sizes makes for some fun racing- In any local area, running TAG or Shifter can be a mixed bag, because the fields sizes are fairly small. It’s not fun running around in a heat of five karts. The affordable, control nature of the 206 packages allows for more people to enter each race. It’s typical to see upwards of 20 racers in a field, from the club to national levels, running on a hard-compound control tire which makes for some awesome battles and allows you to improve your racecraft. Which leads me to my final point…
It helps your driving overall, and it’s so fun to drive- Being such a low horsepower package, you really have to understand how to maximize momentum when driving a 206. Being smooth and tidy, making sure that you plan your attacks properly and understanding how to work traffic are skills that will make you a successful 206 racer. You have to master the fundementals to be a fast racer in this class. If you do decide to move to another class, those skills will be invaluable.
Racing an 206 has been an eye-opener. A fun eye opener . It’s basically the Spec Miata of karting. You’re able to drive at 10/10th’s easily, which makes for some exciting racing with competitors. It’s been helping to grow the sport of karting in ways that haven’t been seen in a while, due to it’s affordable cost and being so accessible. As much as I like racing other classes, it does become a frustrating situation when so many racers leave the sport, because they feel like they can’t afford to keep up with the growing expenses at higher levels, or get the seat time required to be at the front.
At the end of the day, karting needs to be fun. Racing the 206 is serious fun and can be immesenly competitive. Whenever you get a chance, you need to hop in a 206. You’ll definately enjoy it.
Don’t believe me? Take a look at this video from racers from New Zealand. They get how the 206 helps to #keepkartingfun.