Wow! Was that ever fun and am I ever out of shape. Mid morning to early afternoons in Florida are damn brutal with +90 degree weather while racing around a 1/2 mile track wearing a black racing suit, head sock and helmet.
After having to reschedule my initial time in a 206 a couple of times due to weather, this morning was finally my time. I will start by saying that I understand ALL of the folks questioning the speed or performance of the 206s. But, honestly speaking, for a newbie to the sport, the 206 is plenty fast. Yes, there was a Rok that came out and just tore it up passing and lapping a fast 206 guy but, I would not know what to do with that power and speed. There is a lot of learning to do with just the basics of learning that I believe is best learned in a 206 kart.
The folks at RYSA racing located at Miami GP were more than patient helping an old out of shape fart like myself get into one of these little racing contraptions. My first session times were all over the place, spun myself around one time and trying to keep a line while bouncing around unlike I’ve ever experienced before. I came in to the pit and Sebastian, someone I would consider a guru as he’s been around karts since the age of 5 and competed at a much younger age, sat down with me and offered a few very basic suggestions. On my second and final session I was able to keep my times consistently in the 47 second mark for 9 out of 10 laps. While Sebastian was hopeful to have had me complete four (4) sessions and walk away with as close to a 45 sec time…My body just said flat out NO.
I was advised to try to go to the track whenever I could, watch other racers racing their lines and listening to their power on and power off points. It was suggested that before I get in the mix of it all, a Wednesday EVENING (much cooler) session with close to a 20 car field, I should come out at least 3 or 4 more times to get a better feel for the kart and track. Thus resulting in a much better outcome on my first outing actually racing other drivers.
Lastly, as for the 206 class. While I was sitting on a bench cooling off I was able to speak with quite a few other drivers. It seems, at least in South Florida, that the Rok, Rotax and even Shifter kart owners have switched over to 206 for the simple reason of a field to race. The desire for power and speed is always present but more importantly is having a session competing with others than driving quickly by yourself.
Thanks you all for the information posted as it allowed me the direction as to the first steps in to this sport.