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Are you sure about this Dave? I mean really, really, really sure you want to do this? LOL
Speaking strictly east of the Mississippi and primarily midwest/great lakes/northeast regions here:
1) Less “national” races. Period. The schedule is ludicrous right now and is killing budgets, kart counts and club racing simultaneously. In a nutshell the powers that be at WKA and USPKS need to check their egos at the door and bring the best interests of karting back to the table. Neither is winning the battle and neither will put the other out of business so instead we as racers and team owners are forced to choose, or do both half-assed. All the while listening to one bitch about the other behind closed doors which only furthers the divide.
This region currently has 5 WKA Races, 2 Winter Cup Races and 4 USPKS races. (not to mention 2 SKUSA, 4 Rok Cup MW, 6 F-Series, 1 US Open, 6 FWT, 6 Rok Cup Florida, 5 Route 66, 5 NJSS and soon a Southeast Regional Series).
At the very least WKA/USPKS should be reduced to 7-8 races starting with Daytona and then monthly from March or April through September with no track duplication. That leaves time for families and teams to get back to regional and/or club racing.
Sure would be great to see big fields again at Nationals and in turn bring legitimacy back to Regional racing. Wouldn’t it be awesome to have Midwest (Route 66), Great Lakes (rebirth of GLSS??), North Atlantic (NJSS) and Southeast Regionals (3 races each) with all on the same rulebook, tires, engines and class structure?
This is not only feasible, it is so simple that it should be a work in progress right now. The WKA US Pro Kart Series under the WKA umbrella, Mark Coats (the undisputed master of regional racing in the area) in charge of Route 66 & GLSS, Ferris family in charge of NJSS and Eric Jones the Southeast. Between the WKA & USPKS/66 staff you could assemble 2 great crews to rotate through the events.
2) If the KA100 is going to be brought in lets please not pretend it is an additional or new class designed to fill a void and just get to the point. It is the IAME direct replacement for the Yamaha KT100 at the Junior and Senior level so lets please just treat it that way and come up with a plan that sets a timeline for replacement at the national & regional level, comes with a very user friendly purchase and/or trade in plan on par with what was offered with the Swift and lastly provide the clubs with weight based equivalency numbers that show how you can run the KA and KT together successfully.
3) Come up with a program akin to the SCCA Track Night in America designed to encourage growth at the club/local level in karting. This program would come with universal nationwide branding and universal entry level or introductory programs. Funding initially would be underwritten by the National sanctioning bodies, manufacturers, suppliers and retailers utilizing a percentage of sponsorship money to fund the inception and initial launch. Essentially seeing the biggest players invest in the future of the sport. Also, a nationally branded, universal program such as this would be the type of program that would finally allow the karting industry to sell/secure sponsorship outside the sport.
I would even go so far as to include the indoor tracks in this program – helping their efforts only boosts our potential growth as well.
Thanks for holding us to 3 topics Dave!!! Could have been a long night….