Talk about teaching race craft to new kart drivers

Hi KartPulse,

So my general question to all of you out there on the inter-webs, how does your club teach newer drivers race craft? Do you mentor, do you just ignore it and hope they learn before hurting themselves or others, does your club take an active role to teach drivers what to do during “race conditions”, or more-so; what not to do?

Let me start with a little rant/preface from today: Needless to say I’m pretty sore, luckily nothing broken, but the kart wasn’t as lucky; frame might need to be replaced…

So, as I’m sure most of you have experienced at some point the lap 1 turn 1 carnage. Unfortunately today was on the receiving end of one such “experience”. Basically, a newer driver in TaG Sr, who was running an est. 1-2 seconds off the pace, figured he wanted to show everyone how good they were by moving up his starting position from P15 to P5 by launching himself up the inside of the pack into turn 1. Surprise surprise, he blew his brake marker and spun; which resulted in him hitting me broadside. He was able to rejoin, I wasn’t able to from the damage I sustained.

I’m wondering at what FLUFFING point did the driver EVER think they were going to make that corner? Do people not register how fast they’re driving or by the speed other drivers were passing them ALL FLIPPING day?!? Do they not realize who they’re actually “racing against” by lap times or grid positions? Keep in mind this was the last race of the day, and the final points night for our club this season.

How do you teach drivers that this isn’t a video game, that this is real life, and lives can be at stake? How should a club level organization approach this topic to try an mitigate these situations from happening?

Quite frankly becoming tiresome from the frequency it’s been happening in all classes.

Ok, rant over. BIG BREATH!!!

Let me know what your thoughts are.

Thanks-

Licensing.

To enter national series or any club races held in between the national races (small nation) drivers have to pass the ARKS test and get themselves a CIK competitor license. That in itself infers a suitable degree of racecraft tuition to safely join the field.

Other than that really only SWS races here which are rentals with their own less stringent governance but obviously less risk as the karts all have skirts.

At the end of the day, in my opinion as a budding facility owner, it’s the facility’s responsibility to ensure drivers are of a suitable level before allowing them to enter competition where they might get hurt or hurt someone else or their property.

Unfortunately sometimes the only way to learn these lessons is to make these mistakes. They can be costly, but when a driver understands there are consequences on-track to their poor moves, they are likely to take that into consideration next time they think about it.

Sucks to hear you got the worse end of it, but I always try to empathize and think about the other driver’s perspective too. If they are new, they likely didn’t see the full picture in terms of their lap times, the risks etc. Newer drivers have a lot of things to worry about so it can be tough to realize all the possible scenarios and repercussions of every move they make. Plus they don’t have the experience library to understand what could happen if they make such a move.

In a situation like this, I would wait a bit, cool down, assess your damage, and once you are emotionally calm enough, go have a chat with them, ask their perspective, discuss your view on it, and maybe everyone can shake hands and learn from it. We were all new once.

This past weekend I got completely podded off the road in the one final, in a very optimistic pass attempt from another driver. I was annoyed, but luckily nothing was broken and all it cost me was a few spots at the finish. But I understood the other driver’s perspective. They had a really fast kart charging and breathing down their neck, they had to make a lunge somewhere to get away from that kart, and even though I defended, they committed to the move anyway, threw it in where there was no room, and at some point they either have to root me out of the way at the apex or they have to concede and probably lose 3 or 4 spots. I know what I would’ve chosen if I had put myself in the same position. Doesn’t mean it’s right, but because I was able to see their perspective on it, I understood why it all happened the way it did, so there was no hard feelings after really. I just shrugged it off as part of racing. They picked up a penalty for it at the finish.

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