Home Forums General Karting Discussion Cancellation of Robopong 200, what happened?

This topic contains 12 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  Dan Schlosser 4 weeks, 1 day ago.

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  • #72433

    Greg Wright
    Participant

    This would have been the weekend of the 13th Annual 200 lap endurance TAG race (plus supporting classes) at NCMP.

    The race was canceled due to low entries. It hasn’t been all that long since this race was considered one of the big three karting events in the country along with the Supernats and the Rock Island Grand Prix.

    What happened and can it be brought back?

    Discuss??

    Greg Wright
    Rapid Racing Inc.

    "When in doubt Gas it, It won't help but it ends the suspense."

    #72445

    lynn haddock
    Participant

    BURN OUT — when you ride a horse too hard, he will lay down and die.

    Lets look at the last four years of sprint karting in the eastern side of the USA:

    SKUSA — added one eastern event event and one more coming in 2017

    WKA — added 3 extra races (winter tour) in 2016

    USPKS — brand new — four more races each year

    Gear Up Series — brand new — 5-6 races

    ROCK ISLAND — RT.66 series  — Rotax and RokCup Winter series — local series here and there — and some I probably missed

    I think this says it all………………when too much pressure is applied to folks time and pocketbook, something has to give and they start staying home — they start picking and choosing.

     

    • This reply was modified 2 months, 1 week ago by  lynn haddock.
    #72475

    Greg Wright
    Participant

    Lynn, Those are the official reasons given and there’s no doubt that they are accurate.

    I can’t help but wonder if the decreasing popularity of TAG at the local level isn’t having some effect as well. In the past this race had plenty of “National” type teams and drivers but it was widely supported by the local TAG community that has dwindled very noticeably over the last few years.

    Greg Wright
    Rapid Racing Inc.

    "When in doubt Gas it, It won't help but it ends the suspense."

    #72720

    Dan Schlosser
    Participant

    Lynn is right in regard to the proliferation of “National” racing and the toll it takes on not just the racers/families but the teams as well. This is the single biggest issue among midwest/northeast/mid-atlantic based racers & teams:

    FWT 6 events, WKA 7 events, USPKS 4 events, Route 66 5 events, Rok Cup 7 events, US Open 3 events, SKUSA Pro tour 3 events, F-Series 6 events.

    Crazy but in 2017 you are looking at adding 1 WKA, 2 Rok Cup and 1 SKUSA races east of the Mississippi.

    This is just killing budgets as well as free time to do the one-off races like Robo-pong. Even for those of us that love races like Robo-pong and Rock Island just don’t have time to prep for these races let alone participate.

    I also think that the wide spread of the traveling programs are having an impact on those local TAG fields you mention Greg. Not only are all of these races overlapping local events, pulling entries away, but so many of the TAG participants on the local level can be found turning wrenches on the road tour.

    That said, the costs associated with TAG racing no longer make it affordable fun. The LO 206 at New Castle and the Senior Yamaha at Pitt Race show that the racers are still out there, they just no longer are willing or interested to pay the price it takes to run the TAG package. Maybe if the clubs would make an incentive to pull the cheap old Leopard, PRD, Rok TT and Rotax off the shelves racers may turn out again. Cheaper entry fees, lower weights, etc for older engine packages may get some people back out.

    Just a few thoughts.

    #72764

    Greg Wright
    Participant

    Dan, In your opinion is it possible to resurrect this event? As much as I would like to see it come back historically when an event gets canceled the odds on reviving it are slim.

    I hope I’m wrong.

    Greg Wright
    Rapid Racing Inc.

    "When in doubt Gas it, It won't help but it ends the suspense."

    #72841

    Dan Schlosser
    Participant

    Yes I think there is hope it can be rescheduled and be successful but it would require some things to happen. That could be the optimist in me though.

    It has to happen no earlier than 2 weeks after the end of the midwest travel season.

    Also at some point these sanctioning bodies need to get their heads together and come up with a reasonable schedule in this market that involves LESS dates, not more, with a reasonable wrap up of the traveling season. In my personal opinion there needs to be a merger or agreement of some sort that results in less dates among these folks too.

    I think some sort of multi-class format (like all endurance racing) that would put an old iron/sportsman class out there with the primary (X30 spec class essentially) class racing for the big bucks. The Sportsman class could feature Leopard/Rotax/Rok TT, etc at a lower weight, a max gear, tire limit, etc and maybe a reduced entry fee.

    #72879

    Tim Koyen
    Participant

    Sooo many factors….Some of which were listed above.  You can also add that this race was a “bucket list” race for many people.  Those boxes have all been checked off by now.  How about the fact that the Leopard was the De Facto engine to have for Tag racing for something like 7 years.  That kind of stability made it attractive to budgeteers wanting to do a few fun races like this.  The Leopards are now paperweights, and no one is going out to buy an X30 to run Robopong.  I don’t see any way possible that this race can survive in this climate as an annual race.  Perhaps every other year.?

    As far as the travel schedule easing goes, as long as every engine manufacturer in the world has to have 2 series of their own, its going to be this way.  Better get used to it.

    KartLift Kart Stands
    DeepSeat Kart Seats
    877-777-8020
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    Don't bother PMing me, it doesn't work. Email is best: tim@kartlift.com.

    #72882

    Andrew Coulter
    Participant

    Agree with the comments above. It’s to the point that many participants do not willingly leave karting, more as karting drives them out of karting. Too many individuals/businesses trying to push the latest and greatest package, series, etc. down the karters throat for personal gain. It may be in their eyes, the best idea for the sport, but it continues to segment the sport. After personally spending a lot of time in the TAG class, i refuse to go out and buy a new X30 so it can be a paperweight in another couple years as well.

    If I were to get back into the sport on a regular basis i would consider KT100 or L206 as they seem to be the most stable classes over time in the midwest. It’s not as fun as having the HP of TAG engine, but i would still choose the class with more entries and the closer more economical engines. How many different TAG engines are laying around garages across the US since 2000? It’s kind of sad to think about as that many more engines could be at the track on weekends. As far as the robopong goes.. i would think the entry numbers would be there in the L206 class. I don’t know enough about them to be able to say if they are reliable enough to run the distance of the robopong…

    Just my two sense..

    #73374

    Dan Schlosser
    Participant

    I disagree Tim – racers don’t have to get used to it, they need to be part of the solution and vote with their wallets. Something has to break and it damn well better be some events or some series rather than the racers. Otherwsie we are all screwed.

    #73379

    Tim Koyen
    Participant

    You are right Dan, but the problem isn’t that new series keep popping up, its that too many people are cherry picking the easy series to be the next “national champion”.  Champion of what?  Some of these series have an average of less than 10 entries per class.  Parents all want their kids to win big trophies.  Make enough series so that everyone can be a winner!  Can you blame the series for trying to fill the need?  If the parents came to their senses, and participated in a few top level series so they could legitimately lay a claim to being the best, then these little specialty series would drizzle out.  As long as people are willing to pay for their own game, the games will exist.  And as long as shops are willing to take the money of the parents who want their own game, the series will exist and the shops will follow.  The shops are no less at fault here than the series.  They are just filling the need that the parents create.  And let’s be honest here, its the parents.  Everyone knows that the kids comprise the lion’s share of things these days.  No sane person would spend the kind of money on themselves to race karts that some of these parents do.  When my kid was small, all we wanted to do was race against the best.  Things have changed.

    KartLift Kart Stands
    DeepSeat Kart Seats
    877-777-8020
    ------------------
    Don't bother PMing me, it doesn't work. Email is best: tim@kartlift.com.

    #73380

    Charles Kaneb
    Participant

    It was scheduled to be held on the same day as the Season Championship race at East Lansing Kart Track. If it comes back and ELKT gets enough notice of the date for Kevin to consider scheduling around they could have several entries.

     

    Now, for some old-fashioned eKn speculation and debate that’s been missing from the new forum. ELKTers, I suggest the following driver pairings based on the photos from the Graeme Voller send-off event: Ben Varner/Rodrigo LF, Deiondre Smith/Elliott Budzinski, Joe Bath/ Frank Wilson, Channing Watson/Keith Bowerman, Charles Kaneb/Todd Lemp, Bruce Woodrow/Graham Henckel, Tyler Lemp/Joe Budzinski, Tom Collins II/Tom Collins III. Get a couple of big Army-surplus tents, bring cooking equipment and maybe it doesn’t cost a fortune?

    #73892

    Tim Landon
    Participant

    You are right Dan, but the problem isn’t that new series keep popping up, its that too many people are cherry picking the easy series to be the next “national champion”. Champion of what? Some of these series have an average of less than 10 entries per class. Parents all want their kids to win big trophies. Make enough series so that everyone can be a winner! Can you blame the series for trying to fill the need? If the parents came to their senses, and participated in a few top level series so they could legitimately lay a claim to being the best, then these little specialty series would drizzle out. As long as people are willing to pay for their own game, the games will exist. And as long as shops are willing to take the money of the parents who want their own game, the series will exist and the shops will follow. The shops are no less at fault here than the series. They are just filling the need that the parents create. And let’s be honest here, its the parents. Everyone knows that the kids comprise the lion’s share of things these days. No sane person would spend the kind of money on themselves to race karts that some of these parents do. When my kid was small, all we wanted to do was race against the best. Things have changed.

    You hit the nail right on the head my man.  I know from personal experience working a short while for a National Team.   They provided arrive and drive for a bunch of rich daddy silver spoon spoiled little turds.  It was no fun at all.

    #74045

    Dan Schlosser
    Participant

    You are right Dan, but the problem isn’t that new series keep popping up, its that too many people are cherry picking the easy series to be the next “national champion”. Champion of what? Some of these series have an average of less than 10 entries per class. Parents all want their kids to win big trophies. Make enough series so that everyone can be a winner! Can you blame the series for trying to fill the need? If the parents came to their senses, and participated in a few top level series so they could legitimately lay a claim to being the best, then these little specialty series would drizzle out. As long as people are willing to pay for their own game, the games will exist. And as long as shops are willing to take the money of the parents who want their own game, the series will exist and the shops will follow. The shops are no less at fault here than the series. They are just filling the need that the parents create. And let’s be honest here, its the parents. Everyone knows that the kids comprise the lion’s share of things these days. No sane person would spend the kind of money on themselves to race karts that some of these parents do. When my kid was small, all we wanted to do was race against the best. Things have changed.

    Yes I do blame the series entirely Tim. Racers do not magically just find the funding to do another series because there is another series. Money is the finite resource in the equation, not race dates.

    I also disagree completely that this is about parents chasing trophies. I have yet to meet a single parent outside of Kid Karts that doesn’t want consolidation of series and more people running together rather than having series with 60% fields.

    I also find it very difficult to blame the teams as well. The few of us that are left (actually I’m not even included in that “us” any longer) work like jackasses to make a living because now we have twice as much travel, twice as many hotel rooms, twice as many labor hours, twice as much fuel, twice as much time away from family/shop/club racing – all in order to make 20% more money.

    It’s just stupid, sorry.

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