Kart racing is one of the cheapest ways to get into motorsport. The karts raced are a far cry from their corporate counterparts boasting substantially more power, less weight and stickier tyres. This guide serves to give some basic information on how to get started in the world of kart racing. A sport which has seen the start of many professional racing driver's careers such as David Coulthard, Lewis Hamilton, Paul DiResta and Jenson Button to name a few. This aside it's an enjoyable family sport and many of our members compete for the enjoyment rather than persuing careers in motorsport.
First things first, don't rush out and buy a kart. Make sure it fits with what you want to do. There are certain kart classes which have established grids and this guide will explain them.
This initivative is designed to give anyone interested in getting started in kart racing an opportunity to trial it without financial outlay. The club has a selection of karts available from Bambinos (6 years +), Honda Cadet (8 years +) and Rotax Max (11 years +). A club member will brief, tutor and supervise any drivers particpating. If you're interested in finding out more about a Let's Go Karting please contact us
Boys and girls can start racing karts at the age of 8 in one of the Cadet classes. They can continue until the end of the year of their 13th birthday, although they may be getting too heavy by then and so can move into certain Junior classes from the age of 11. The three Cadet classes are described below and all are permitted to race together. All have a centrifugal clutch and a recoil starting cord or electric start. The special minikarts used are registered with prices controlled to an agreed maximum. Top speed is about 50mph.
IAME 60cc 2-stroke Parilla Gazelle UK
Replaces Comer as the MSA Championship class, the engine is un-sealed.
COMER 60cc 2-stroke
Uses sealed engines so rebuilds have to be carried out by an approved service agent.
HONDA CADET 160cc 4-stroke
Uses a 4-stroke long life low cost GX160. This is the most popular cadet class raced at Boyndie and throughout Scotland.
The most popular class in the UK is the 125cc water-cooled Rotax Max TAG (Touch and Go). Drivers can start racing Rotax Mini Max at the age of 11 and the power powerful Junior Max from the age of 13. The Rotax engine boasts greater reliability and longer run times between rebuilds. Speeds vary from 55mph to 75mph.
Rotax Mini Max (11-15yrs)
Is the lowest powered class of the Rotax family, and uses a very restricted 125cc 2-stroke TAG engine. All Rotax engines are sealed and have a log-book showing the service history.
Junior Rotax Max (13-17yrs)
By taking the restrictor out of a MiniMax it is converted to a Junior Max (age 13-17yrs). It is one of the most powerful junior classes, with top speed about 70 mph.
The most popular senior class in the country is Rotax Max. There is however also the 125cc Gearbox class offering the peformance of a single seater race car!
Senior Rotax Max (16+yrs)
The senior equivalent of Junior Max, with a very powerful 125cc TAG engine. Although the maximum revs are limited electronically, they are nearly as quick as the top international classes, but much lower maintenance, and sealed to prevent unapproved tuning. Care needs to be taken if starting in this class. Like many classes there is a higher weight variant called Rotax 177 for the heavier driver.
125cc Gearbox (16+yrs)
KZ2 UK is the most popular gearbox classon short circuit and 125 Open on Long Circuit.
Although a little more expensive than a direct drive class, they can be surprisingly economical to run.
The 125cc water cooled engines have six gears, sequentially operated like a motorcycle using a gear-lever mounted next to the steering wheel. 0-60mph times are less than 4 seconds, top speed is 90mph on short circuit, 110 - 120mph on long circuit.
Boyndie offer owner kart drivers two ways to go racing. The Boyndie Drome Open Challenge (BDOC) was introduced as a more cost effective championship and a stepping-stone into MSA racing. Allowing karts which may not comply with current MSA technical regulations and drivers without an MSA racing license to get a taster for the sport. Run to the same format as an MSA meeting it's a good starting point for anyone who is new to the sport.
MSA racing is seen to be slightly more serious but in reality can be competed in at similar costs to the BDOC once you have your racing license. To apply for your racing license you will need to purchase a starter pack from the MSA which will contain your novice application form.
The typical racing format for a normal club meeting on a Sunday is a 3 lap practice in the morning, 3 heats for each driver with random grids and a final. The final gridded by the results of all 3 heats.
If you are looking to compete in MSA Racing you will need to hold an MSA Competition License which required you to complete an ARKS test. Our local ARKS examiner is Gordon Rennie who can be contacted on 01358 511 050 for more information on completeing your ARKS.
Scotland has two premiere Championships. The first is the Super Series which is a four round series contended at all the kart circuits in Scotland. The second is a flagship weekend event where the honours of the 'A' plate is battled out.
For further information download the ABkC's Guide to Karting here