Glenn, it sounds to me like you’re a club racer. Just buy a LO206, pull it out of the box, mount it on the frame and go.
1. Believe me, the difference between a “club” vs. a “national” LO206 won’t even be felt by the average club racer – the same cannot be said for the difference between a “club” and a “national” Honda GX, where you’re talking over a second per lap on many tracks.
2. Coming from some very reputable people (in Western Canada), who have accumulated numerous LO206’s in the effort to put the rumours to bed, the gap between a “fast” one and a “dud” has generally been found to be about 0.3 of a second. Yes, at the national level, that’s huge. Even a top-level club racer will probably be disappointed with that. But for the average club racer, it’s not going to make any real difference. Again, comparing with the Honda GX program, we’re still much closer with the LO206 program.
3. You started out by saying the most economical way to race in Canada my not be the LO206. Let me just say that if you think a $2,700 “national” LO206 engine is expensive, then don’t even bother asking about what a fast Rotax Max will cost you.
Bottom line, buy an engine in a box, open it up and race it. I’m sure you can find one in the East. If not, I’ll gladly refer you to several people in the West who’ll ship one to you.