California ProKart Challenge Readies for Exciting 2016 Season
Another stellar prize package and schedule planned for Superkarts! USA regional program
Fields are expected to fill up throughout the season for the California ProKart Challenge with six different tracks for the six-round series (Photo: dromophotos.com)
The California ProKart Challenge season wrapped up at the end of September following another successful year and finale event at the growing Streets of Lancaster Grand Prix. Just three months later, Superkarts! USA is busy preparing for the 2016 season, expected to be among the best championship programs in the country. The 11 categories this season are similar to that in 2015, with the six-race schedule expanded to include six distinct facilities all with their unique characteristics and challenging aspects that will test the competitors of the California ProKart Challenge.
The six Stock Moto categories will remain unchanged for 2016. The addition of the S4 Super Master division in 2015 is gaining momentum for the second season, with former series drivers looking to make a return to the California PKC program. Five TaG divisions remain as well, this year with a 100% move to the IAME X30 powerplant for the Senior, Master and Junior divisions – for the year as well as for future editions of the series, with Superkarts! USA’s commitment to the engine. The Cadet divisions enter the second season with the IAME Swift 60 engine, with Mini Swift (TaG Cadet) reserved for drivers 9-13 years of age and the Micro Swift (TaG Rookie) for racers 7-10 years old.
With the new season just around the corner, SKUSA is also thrilled to announce that it has confirmed all of its class sponsors for the 2016 California ProKart Challenge.
S1 Pro Stock Moto – 2Wild Karting
S2 Semi-Pro Stock Moto – Leading Edge Motorsport
S3 Rookie Stock Moto – Outsource Utility Contractor Corp.
S4 Master Stock Moto – Nash Motorsportz
S4 Super Master Stock Moto – Mike Manning Karting
S5 Junior Stock Moto – Rolison Performance Group
Micro Swift – Top Kart USA
Mini Swift – PKS Kart Supplies
X30 Junior – Ryan Perry Motorsport
X30 Senior – Phil Giebler Racing
X30 Master – Vemme Kart/Extreme Karting
This year’s California ProKart Challenge schedule brings six unique circuits to decide the 11 series champions. The always popular Buttonwillow and Willow Springs locations will remain the opening two events for 2016. Monterey Bay Kart Track is the first of two returning tracks to the series. The Monterey Bay Karters host events at their facility located at the Marina Municipal Airport Complex, just a few miles away from the Pacific Ocean. The month of May is off to allow competitors the opportunity to compete at the SKUSA SpringNationals, set for Arizona. The series returns in June to the popular Simraceway facility in Northern California’s wine country. Santa Maria Kart Track is the second facility to make its way back onto the California PKC schedule for 2016. It marks a return to action after the July break for the SKUSA SummerNationals in Indiana. Closing out the year once again is the growing Streets of Lancaster Grand Prix at the end of September.
The following is the confirmed 2016 race schedule for the California ProKart Challenge:
February 5-6: Buttonwillow Raceway Park – Buttonwillow, California
March 4-5: Willow Springs International Raceway – Rosamond, California
April 1-2: Monterey Bay Kart Track – Marina, California
June 3-4: Simraceway Performance Karting Center – Sonoma, California
August 26-27: Santa Maria Kart Track – Santa Maria, California
September 24-25: Streets of Lancaster Grand Prix – Lancaster, California
The two engine manufacturers of the Superkarts! USA categories – IAME and Honda Performance Development (HPD) – are once again showing their support of the California PKC program. IAME, the manufacturer for all five TaG divisions, is set to raffle off gift certificates at every race along with some exciting year-end prizes. SKUSA will be giving away two complete IAME engines at the season-end banquet. The first will be a raffle that will be open to all drivers in any X30 or Swift class who competed in at least five of the six California PKC races in 2016. The second engine will be reserved for one of the newly-crowned X30 or Swift champions. The names of the Senior, Master, Junior, Mini and Micro champions will be put into a hat for the chance to win an IAME engine of their choice. For both of these engines, as with all PKC banquet raffle prizes, the winner must be present at the time of raffle to be eligible to win. IAME is also providing a trip to the 2017 IAME International Final in Le Mans, France. One ticket will be raffled off to drivers in attendance from the X30 and Stock Moto classes (Swift drivers are not eligible.) More details on this exciting trip will be forthcoming.
HPD returns in 2016 to provide its stellar Contingency Program, awarding the top-three California PKC champs in all stock Honda classes with ‘HPD bucks’ at the end of the year — $200 to 1st, $100 to 2nd and $75 to 3rd. They will also be providing product all year long, which will be raffled off to the Stock Honda drivers at the individual podiums, and will again offer up a new Honda generator to be raffled off at the season-end banquet in October.
SKUSA’s exciting podium raffles are legendary, and they will again be providing those attending the awards presentations with a shot at winning sets of the new Evinco tires, buckets of Mothers Polish products, and free entries to upcoming California PKC events. When Tom gets carried away, as he often does, it gets good for the PKC families. The individual weekend totals for these raffles will regularly top the $2500-mark.
The IAME Swift drivers – SKUSA’s youngest competitors – are tabbed for two special award packages in 2016. A full entry to the SKUSA SuperNationals XX in Las Vegas in November, including entry, fuel, oil and race tires, will be raffled off to one driver in Mini Swift and one driver in Micro Swift for those competitors who have competed in five of the six races on the California PKC schedule in attendance at the October Awards Banquet.
Finally, one of the biggest awards in the SKUSA program will return in 2016 as the Streets of Lancaster Grand Prix Scholarship will again honor a special individual with full support for the 2017 California PKC and Pro Tour racing season. Each year, the SKUSA staff selects a driver who exemplifies the meaning of sportsmanship, class, diligence and quality of character through a season of Superkarts! USA racing. This driver must be dedicated to the SKUSA program and needs to be the ‘complete package’. The chosen driver will represent Superkarts! USA and the Streets of Lancaster Grand Prix throughout the 2017 season, which is worth over $12,000 in support. The past winners include Carter Williams, Austin Elliott and now 2016 winner Trey Brown. The next award recipient will be announced during the podium celebrations at this year’s Streets of Lancaster Grand Prix in September.
Participation in the California ProKart Challenge provides much in the way of exclusive access as well, as those drivers running in the first four races of the year (Buttonwillow, Willow Springs, Monterey and Sonoma) will be included in the SuperNationals Priority Pre-Entry Program (PPEP), which will give them special pre-registration access to enter the SKUSA SuperNationals XX. With many of the classes filling up within days of registration being opened, the PPEP provides a huge benefit to the core SKUSA customers. This year’s SuperNationals will again take place at the Las Vegas Convention Center, celebrating the 20th edition of the largest karting event in the world.
Each of the California ProKart Challenge champions will head to the SuperNationals with a key component already in their pockets. Champions earn a Guaranteed SuperSunday Starting Spot for the Las Vegas spectacular, which is a bonus worth its weight in gold when it comes to being able to make the main in the larger classes.
Registration is now open for the first round of the California ProKart Challenge at Buttonwillow. The deadline for online registration for the event is Tuesday, February 2 at midnight – with the discounted price of $325 for entry and stamped race tires. Move-in for Round One of the California PKC begins on Thursday afternoon, February 4. On Friday, the California PKC registration desk opens at 7:00am, with the official practice day beginning on track at 9:00am, running until 5:00pm. There is a nominal fee of $30 for a reserved pit spot and $50 for overnight camping at the track (as a flat fee for up to 3 total nights). Attendees are encouraged to reserve space now as spots are filling up fast. Competitors and spectators will need to pay the $10 per person gate fee upon entering the facility. Complete race and venue information, along with a tentative weekend schedule and host hotel information, can be found at the California PKC Event Page.
Superkarts! USA would like to remind California PKC competitors that the spec fuel and oil is not provided by PKC, but may be available for purchase from the track. Please plan accordingly to pre-order – or bring a sufficient supply of both for the weekend. It is also a good idea to have rain tires in your trailer at all times, as ‘El Nino’ promises wet weather this season! The spec MG rain tires can be pre-ordered or pre-purchased from SKUSA’s online store or your local kart shop. For more info on anything related to Superkarts! USA, please visit the website – www.superkartsusa.com and be sure to follow the Superkarts! USA Facebook page and Twitter account – or call the SKUSA head office at 951-491-0808.