Where are you located?
Northern California (Sacramento area)
What age bracket are you in?
On a scale of 1-10, how would you rate your mechanical ability, or willingness to wrench on things?
10, worked as a drivability mechanic in a previous life (20 years ago).
Talk a little about your racing experience so far.
None; did some rentals.
What’s the main thing you need help with to get you started.
I just bought a used cart (2020 Margay Ignite K3) and will be taking it to the track this weekend. What level of skill do I need to obtain before entering one of the local club races? I really don’t want to be a road hazard while out on the track.
I was thinking about just practicing until I could get my lap times down around “last place, not lapped” using prior race data from SpeedHive.
That’s a good strategy, and the same one my dad used with me when I was a kid. That way you’ll know the track well enough so you’ll know how to be safe around other karts and you’ll be more familiar with your own kart.
I agree with above. When your lap times are keeping up with the last few places your probably good to go. But remember running laps out there by yourself isn’t the same as running in a group, so you should also try and run with others for the experience.
Yes but… don’t feel like you have to be great or anything. I put off racing until I felt like I had a handle on things. In retrospect, I could have started sooner. If you can get around the track without being lapped, you are ready and then some. Pay attention to the folks you will be racing against and when you feel like you can keep up with the rear pack, go for it.
Also another tip I could give would be for when you are on the track with much faster drivers For practice. They will get around you just don’t make sudden steering moves that make you unpredictable. I see newer guys do this allot. Go to pass them and they just suddenly go to one side of track without looking. Give up the inside line to the faster guy and be aware of karts coming up on you. We were all new at one time and most people are cool with having a newer/slower guy out there as long as he is being responsible. Good luck.
Some practices are open (multiple classes at once) so like @Bryan34w said, there will be much faster karts out at the same time. best thing to do is hold your line, or point the driver behind you by where you want them to go. Its their job to get around you. Get lots of laps in and have fun!
Oh yeah, can’t stress that enough. As a new guy, drive your line and let the others worry about getting by you. Yes you are a rolling chicane at this point, but don’t try to help… it’s likely that if you zig to let a faster driver by, they will zag right into you. Point other drivers by if you feel like you have space to do so, otherwise, just drive.
Can’t repeat enough. What he said.
Hold your line. For the love of all things holy, hold your line. Do not abruptly move to get out of the way.
We will get around you I’d you do what you’ve been doing the entire race. We’ve been watching you since we got within a half track of lapping you. We know where we are going to go when we get to you so that we all make another lap safely. I promise.
You whip over to get out of the racing line, all bets are off. Someone will crash at that point. Probably you.
Thanks for all the great advice, without it I would have been whipping out wide to avoid the faster drivers.
Also go talk to people. Go ask what people would recommend for gearing,l or setup advice. Or even if you had questions about corners or lines to take people will be more than happy to help. The karting community is probably one of the most helpful and friendly in motorsports.
Oh, you sound like an adult so this probably isn’t necessary… karting is not NASCAR. Rubbing isn’t really a part of it in karting. It happens but it’s generally not well received to try to push other karts. I get this from time to time with the newer folks that love nascar.
(Not to be confused with tippy-taps while everyone is lined up and racing. It’s normal to get up on the other guys bumper, should you be so brave.)
Give each other room. If you and another guy are going for the same apex, get it done fairly and safely. It is not ok to put someone in a position where they have to leave track to avoid contact.
Also, 1 move to defend please. It is NOT ok to fly halfway across the track to try to impede the guy behind you. Widen or narrow the corner appropriately… one kart width max, generally. And, once you decide, stick with the move, no mid corner reassessment unless it’s gonna cause problems.