California ProKart Challenge Primes for Best Season Yet
2014 schedule confirmed with exciting venues, big value and lucrative benefits
With a renewed focus on program improvement, the Superkarts! USA staff is now back in the office following its post-SuperNationals ‘recharge’, ready to put the final touches on the 2014 season. The schedule for their California ProKart Challenge series has been finalized, and the details for the fifth edition of the national SKUSA Pro Tour are just days away from being announced, as well. The first item on the docket will be to fire the engines for the flagship PKC, which kicks off in less than six weeks (February 1). The PKC formula is tried, tested and true, and real benefits are the key to building in value for the SKUSA racer. Special priority pre-entry to the annual SuperNationals, which will likely be a ‘must-have’ this year, is only the tip of the iceberg to what SKUSA provides to its ProKart Challenge customers. The 2014 benefits package also includes trips to the Granja 500 in Brazil, great race day giveaways and year-end championship prizes, guaranteed starting spots at the SuperNationals and tremendous offers for new TaG Cadet racers. Simply put, it’s all about value, and SKUSA will be delivering in a big way.
To get things kicked off, following is the official schedule for the 2014 California ProKart Challenge:
Jan 31-Feb 1: Buttonwillow Kart Track – Buttonwillow, CA
Feb 28-Mar 1: Willow Springs Kart Track – Rosamond, CA
Mar 28-29: Adams Motorsports Park – Riverside, CA
June 6-7: Simraceway Kart Track – Sonoma, CA
Sept 5-6: Lake Elsinore Storm ‘Temp Track’ – Lake Elsinore, CA
Sept 27-28: Streets of Lancaster Grand Prix – Lancaster, CA
This year’s schedule features three of PKC’s ‘go-to’ tracks – Buttonwillow, Willow Springs and Adams – plus two great additions with a return to NorCal and the popular Simraceway facility in Sonoma, and a new temp track event in Lake Elsinore in the parking lot of ‘The Diamond’, the home of the Class A Lake Elsinore Storm baseball team. The final two races of the year – Lake Elsinore and the Streets of Lancaster Grand Prix – will be excellent tune-ups for the SuperNationals in November, and will also cap the PKC championship battles in style.
SKUSA continues to develop its California ProKart Challenge, pushing value, customer service and loads of extra benefits for participation. The series continues to offer the best value in SoCal karting, providing loads of track time thanks to a focused class structure and professional race management that eliminates wasteful downtime. The program offers just nine classes, normally run in five or six race groups, which opens the door for massive track time, making the PKC about actual ‘racing’, not ‘waiting to race’. Beginning with two morning practice runs and an ample qualifying session, the drivers then run two 10-lap heat races to set the grid for what is traditionally a 20-lap main, depending on the track length. With this approach, PKC racers enjoy loads of wheel-to-wheel action with their fellow competitors, normally logging over 60 laps on race day – which is more than 40% in additional track time over other programs in the state.
SKUSA’s ‘all-in’ race entry program is at the core of this tremendous value. For 2014, the cost will be $310, which includes the race entry, the driver’s pit pass and set of MG race tires. In other programs, this is nearly the cost for the tires alone. With sales tax included, and the track time factored in, the package entry fee for the ProKart Challenge is very likely the best value in American karting. In addition to the value in their packed race day, SKUSA’s professional approach is evident in all facets of their program, beginning with Friday practice, which is available for just $60. The ProKart Challenge rents the track on Friday, and provides its own corner workers, as well as an on-site EMT. Race management is another obvious upgrade, as this isn’t a volunteer crew, but instead an assembly of experienced karting veterans. The PKC race staff is basically the same crew that manages the SKUSA Pro Tour and the SuperNationals, which we believe is second to none.
One of the most exciting elements of the Superkarts! USA program has been the continued growth of the TaG Cadet class. The group drew a record number of entries in 2013, prompting SKUSA to offer a TaG Rookie category within the class for racers aged 7 to 9, or in their first year in the class. This split gave younger drivers the chance to run at their own pace and compete against racers of similar experience. Then at the conclusion of each race, they were awarded their own trophies. The approach was super successful, with the top TaG Cadet Rookie drivers eventually finding their way to the lead pack of the overall results. SKUSA will offer the ‘Rookie’ class once again to support their new racers in the TaG Cadet field. This concept maintains the focus on providing racers with positive experiences all around. In addition, SKUSA will offer a special one-time deal to families new to the PKC and the TaG Cadet class, providing a Vortex Mini Rok powerplant for just $1595 USD. Interested families are asked to contact SKUSA by email only (firstname.lastname@example.org).
This year’s SKUSA SuperNationals topped all record numbers and has become the largest and most popular karting event in the United States, and quite possibly, the world. The demand for race entries has hit an all-time high, as both domestic and foreign interest continues to increase. The SuperNationals has become a ‘bucket list’ race for so many karters that simply getting into the event is an accomplishment in itself. There are only two ways to ensure that you’ll be part of the action in Las Vegas, and one is to run all the races in any of the SKUSA ProKart Challenge series. The concept is to provide SKUSA’s core racers with the first chance to be part of the SuperNationals. This will be the third year for the SuperNationals Priority Pre-Entry Program (PPEP) and the program was fine-tuned by the administrative staff in 2013, providing easy entry for SKUSA’s dedicated customers. With the interest only expected to grow in 2014, the PPEP may end up being the ONLY way to enter the SuperNationals in many classes. For California ProKart Challenge racers, we expect that based on the potential registration deadlines for the SuperNationals, if you compete in the first four rounds of the series, you will be given the opportunity to register for the program ahead of everyone else. By registering for the PPEP, and upon confirmation of your PKC entries, you will be given a special code that will allow you to enter the Supernats BEFORE registration opens to the public. For many, this will be one of the most attractive benefits for being part of the PKC family in 2014.
The SuperNationals benefits are not done though, as one key component remains. At next year’s Vegas event, it is expected that at least five classes will be extended to 80+ drivers, meaning that qualifying for the SuperSunday main events will be the primary goal. Success in a ProKart Challenge regional program can provide a special ‘ace in the hole’, a ‘get out of jail free’ card, if you will, as all PKC regional champions will receive a guaranteed starting position in the final on SuperSunday. Having this in your corner heading to Las Vegas would be a huge advantage when it comes to race strategy, and the only way to obtain this ticket is to run your local ProKart Challenge series.
Superkarts! USA has again stacked the prize table for their racers – not only each weekend but also at the season-end ProKart Challenge awards banquet – with a total value of over $70,000 being doled out to their racers throughout the season. The California PKC’s popular podium raffle always brings a big group to each trophy presentation, as over $2,000 worth of product gets handed out at every race. Selected at random from the driver entry forms, and given only to those attending the podium celebration, PKC hands out free entries to the next race, complimentary sets of MG Tires, cans of VP Fuel, Honda CR125 top-end kits courtesy of HPD, and the ever-popular buckets of Mothers Polish products, valued at over $150 each. The total for the year usually exceeds $15,000. Additional prizes on the year include two tickets to be part of the Granja 500 event in Brazil, which is a trip of a lifetime, as would be confirmed by the many SKUSA racers who have been able to experience this adventure thanks to racing with the ProKart Challenge. Earlier this month, PKC racers Billy Musgrave and Ryon Beachner traveled to Brazil to compete, putting in a great showing for the SKUSA community. The tickets will be awarded at the PKC banquet again this coming fall, and will be eligible for any racer 18 years of age or older and in attendance at the banquet, who competed in all six PKC races in 2014.
Last but certainly not least, SKUSA’s continued partnership with the City of Lancaster moved to the next level in 2013 when they stepped up to provide a special sponsorship program to a deserving ProKart Challenge driver. The City selected Carter Williams to represent the Grand Prix throughout the 2014 season, providing him with a sponsorship worth more than $10,000. In addition to a fully-paid race season, Williams will promote the race all year sporting SOLGP decals, a new ONE Race Gear suit and a new Bell helmet with a custom Brett King Design graphic scheme. The sponsorship support package will be awarded once again at the 2014 edition of this incredible street race, and the Lancaster crew will be watching the paddock throughout the season to identify their new racing partner.
All of this value is a product of unwavering dedication by the SKUSA staff, and they are very excited to get the new season underway. The opening round of the California ProKart Challenge is less than six weeks away, and we hope to see all of our racers back in the paddock to begin what will be an incredible year of Superkarts! USA competition. The online store will be re-opened to race entries for Round 1 at Buttonwillow by January 1st, and racers can renew or purchase their new SKUSA memberships now for the same low price of $75 for 12 months at www.skusastore.com.
For more information on anything related to Superkarts! USA, please visit our website – www.superkartsusa.com – or call the SKUSA head office at 951-491-0808.