Tips for Taller Drivers


(brock weiss) #1

My son has a 2018 Exprit Kart and one of the issues he had always struggled with is his height. He is 6’3” and 160lbs and needless to say his height had always been an issue with karting in terms of setup. Does anyone have suggestions on tips that others have tried for taller drivers such as seat height and posistion?

I was also thinking of trying to lower the entire kart to see if that would help to get his COG lower. Thoughts?

What type of axle should a taller person use for OTK Karts? Short versus Long / Hard versus Soft?

Seat struts? How many?

Any other tips for tall drivers such as caster and camber. Max / Nuetral/ Max?


(James McMahon) #2

This is always a fun one. Make sure to consider overall build (torso length) vs total height. You might raise COG, you might lower it. It really depends.

If you can get a baseline OTK setup, for your tires based on a driver with similar build, start there…

Otherwise, my thought is to start at or near standard settings and tune as the kart and track as they present themselves to you.

Here’s some topics to get your :brain: activated:


(Davin Roberts Sturdivant) #3

Also I will say that a good number of specific setup items to your kart will be specific to your brand of kart.
So what works for an OTK might not work for a TopKart, but there are some general things that might be work keeping in mind.

Also, I’d check to see if there are classes that provide him any weight gap, so that he can add ballast to his kart. I know that at 5’11" and 200lbs, I always end up in the Heavy or Masters Classes, so I can ballast up, rather than being 25 lbs over for a Senior Class.


(Eric Gunderson) #4

One thing a lot of people don’t realize is that a taller driver ‘rolls’ the kart over the front tire that is being loaded in a corner, not just causes chassis hike.

Negative camber is a great thing to try on tighter tracks. It can cause the kart to bind up on corner exit, however. So there is a trade off.

I had to throw everything I could at a kart recently with a taller driver and it still wasn’t enough. Many karts with baseline setups really do not like tall drivers.


(Alex Nowysz) #5

I know this is an old post, but I figured it might be worth reviving in the interest of tall OTK guys like myself…

Have you guys made much progress on your setup? If not, what are the main complaints he has? You’d want to do different things depending on whats going on, so I don’t want to just say “do this one thing and it’ll solve all your problems”. I can give you 2 pieces of general advice based on what I’ve learned though (very shortened in terms of what I went through to arrive at them):

1- Use only OTK parts, start with the baseline setup, and put your seat in the factory recommended spot for your height. I wasted way too much time trying to figure out setups using douglas LV wheels on mine, since my kart didn’t come with OTK ones. I only recently put on some MXJs and was really surprised how much better the kart felt. I should have considered earlier that all the OTK stuff is designed to work together, and having something like different wheels would throw everything else off.

2- Make sure your seat fits closely to your ribs, and as evenly as possible across them so you can lean on it as much as you need to. I started with an imaf seat which had very little upper rib support, and the kart got way more consistent and planted the outside rear better when I switched to an OTK seat (which was more flat on the sides). I could lean more naturally on the seat, and I could feel the weight transfer much more, helping IR lift.

Generally the best setups I’ve found for myself have been with H or HH axles for high grip, and pretty much baseline for everything else, but I’m still working to improve it since I haven’t done many races with it and have a lot more options to try.

In all my experience since I got a tony kart, I’ve felt like they’re a little too wobbly/unstable, and its hard to get it to take a “set” consistently through corners. Is this something you’re dealing with too? I’m curious if its related to driver height or if it happens for everyone on OTK karts because of the soft tubing. For what its worth, I tried the lower rear ride height setting back when i had the imaf seat and was on likely too soft of an axle for the conditions, but that just made the kart tighter. I’m curious if that’d be a good direction to go now.