Morning Coffee – A New Brickyard Experience

Initial thoughts after a memorable IMS weekend

Jul 10, 2019
Written by Rob Howden | No Comments

It’s a trip I’d take any day. The drive from the I-465 exit east on Crawfordsville Road toward the corner of 16th and Georgetown in Speedway, IN has the same effect on me as it did the very first time I made that journey numerous years ago. Every time I roll down that road, my […]

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Morning Coffee: WKA Hall of Famer Keith Freber

My personal take on Keith’s impact on the sport and my own career

Jun 18, 2019
Written by Rob Howden | No Comments

Just over a week ago, at the second edition of the Quincy Grand Prix revival, the World Karting Association honored a pair of very deserving gentlemen with induction into the WKA Hall of Fame. Quincy event promoter Terry Traeder and third-generation Margay Racing owner Keith Freber were put into the national spotlight by former WKA […]

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Morning Coffee: The Much-Maligned ‘Boat Anchor’

A different take on the evolution of engine platforms

May 09, 2019
Written by Rob Howden | 4 Comment

Negativity is a dangerous thing in any community, whether it’s a sport or a club or just a hobby. The other day, I was taking in some of the chatter on the social media platforms surrounding the topic of the evolving engine formulas in the sport.  The introduction of the IAME KA100 powerplant has injected […]

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Morning Coffee: Dual Weekend Double Double

Schedule conflicts will send EKN staff to four races over two weekends

Mar 27, 2019
Written by Rob Howden | No Comments

Every year, as the new racing schedules start landing in our email inboxes at EKN, David Cole and I begin assembling both our personal travel schedules and our plans for the coming year’s EKN Trackside Live Tour. More than any other season, this year’s schedule was hit with date conflicts, which we knew would make […]

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Morning Coffee: January 7, 2019

Positivity and Social Media in Karting

Jan 07, 2019
Written by Rob Howden | 3 Comment

Seeing as it’s been only a week since New Year’s Eve, I’m going to go out on a limb and state that most people are still in a pretty positive mindset and that a majority of your NYE resolutions are still being chased with full commitment. This stream of positivity is an annual mindset shift […]

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Morning Coffee: Changing the Culture of Racecraft

It’s time to hold everyone to a higher standard

Mar 20, 2018
Written by Rob Howden | 3 Comment

Like so many of those enthusiasts who raced karts in the 80s and 90s, I smile widely when I think back to my first years in the sport. I think that it was simpler then.  I loved getting up at 4:30 am to drive an hour to my club track to make sure I had […]

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Morning Coffee: Jake Craig – Mazda Road to Indy Shootout

Californian represents karting community with talent and class

Dec 12, 2017
Written by Rob Howden | No Comments

“You absolutely couldn’t have sent us a better candidate. Jake was polished, a gentleman, and extremely fast. I really hope he gets a bit more seat time, because if he does and he wants to pursue racing as a full-time gig, there’s no doubt he’ll be successful.” This tremendous feedback was part of a text […]

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Morning Coffee: Reflecting on SuperNationals 21

Emotional winners, an incredible track and a live video stream highlight sport's biggest event

Nov 27, 2017
Written by Rob Howden | No Comments

We’re now a week on from the 21st running of the Superkarts! USA SuperNationals in Las Vegas, and everyone has returned home. They’ve enjoyed Thanksgiving with family and friends, and they’ve ‘rested up’ through the weekend. During this time, I’ve personally been reflecting on the event itself, going over some of the happenings and experiences […]

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Nov 14, 2017
Written by Rob Howden | 2 Comment

Over the last 20 years, the Superkarts! USA SuperNationals has cemented its position as the official cap to the national racing season in North America. When it comes to the event’s importance in our sport, one cannot argue against the fact that the race is unparalleled in terms of sheer size and longevity.  The event […]

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Morning Coffee: Sprint Karting on Dirt in SoCal?

The intriguing experience of dirt road course competition

Jun 26, 2017
Written by Rob Howden | 2 Comment

I’m a big fan of karting, in general, meaning all its unique disciplines. I’ve raced four-cycle and two-cycle, I’ve driven in street races like Rock Island and Quincy in the Park, and on big car tracks like Mid-Ohio.  I’ve competed in the Florida Winter Tour in a 125cc shifter and driven on the dirt in […]

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Jun 06, 2017
Written by Rob Howden | 16 Comment

I’m often asked about running a company like eKartingNews.com, and what we do to fill our days at the desk. This isn’t the time to list the endless work that keeps me in my office for 10-12 hours a day between races, but suffice it to say that motorsports journalism is perceived through the end […]

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Morning Coffee: Safety First

The Importance of Sport-Specific Safety Gear

May 17, 2017
Written by Rob Howden | 1 Comment

In my early days as a motorsports journalist, I worked as a freelance Editor-at-Large for National Kart News, which was the leading karting magazine at the time. One of the annual editorial components that my publisher always requested was a ‘Safety Guide’, so we put together an issue each year that highlighted the helmets, suits, […]

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Morning Coffee: The Engine Claim Rule

Policing motor parity is a positive approach

Jan 16, 2017
Written by Rob Howden | 1 Comment

Now that we’re halfway through January, it’s really starting to feel like the new season is up and running.  The final weeks of 2016 felt like a whirlwind, as we came off a month of preparations that led into our trackside effort for last November’s SKUSA SuperNationals.  It seems like I just left Las Vegas, […]

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Morning Coffee: Reset and Enjoy

2016 is in the rearview; time to focus forward

Jan 03, 2017
Written by Rob Howden | 1 Comment

For all the battling that went on this year in karting, both on-track and off-track, between drivers and between organizations, there’s one thing that is for certain.  2016 is done and gone, and everything that happened throughout the year it is now history.  As we roll into the first week of January, I suggest that […]

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Morning Coffee: Wednesday, December 14

Understanding the Goal of TV Coverage

Dec 14, 2016
Written by Rob Howden | No Comments

It’s been a long year, as I’m sure most of you will agree, and I’m finally back in the office after my last travel trip of the year.  I wrapped the season by attending the Performance Racing Industry Show in Indianapolis, working with the Mazda Road to Indy crew and hosting a few driver announcements […]

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Morning Coffee: Tuesday, June 21

Pro Aspirations? Start The Education Now

Jun 21, 2016
Written by Rob Howden | No Comments

As is so often the case, I draw many ‘Morning Coffee’ topics from the daily discussions I have with people in the sport.  More often than not, it’s either my conversation partner or myself who eventually blurts out…“that should be a column”.  We discuss the positives and negatives of the current state of karting or […]

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Morning Coffee: Friday, June 10

Jamie Sieracki - Back in the Seat - SKUSA SpringNationals

Jun 10, 2016
Written by Rob Howden | No Comments

Amidst all the tension and stress that comes with any major national karting event these days, there are also numerous stories throughout the paddock that remind us all of the passion that resides outside the track boundaries. A case in point is Franklin Motorsports’ Jamie Sieracki, the lifelong kart racer and industry member who during […]

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Morning Coffee: Friday, May 6

A Major Rethink To Bringing Back Racecraft

May 06, 2016
Written by Rob Howden | 20 Comment

The sport of karting has evolved a great deal through its 60 years of existence, but the overall approach to competition may have changed the most over the last five years alone, especially at the national level.  This unique segment of our world is now characterized by pro-level transport truck haulers and toterhomes, unlimited testing, […]

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Morning Coffee: Friday – April 29

Pushing To The Next Level

Apr 29, 2016
Written by Rob Howden | No Comments

As I sit at the desk in my hotel room, just before the start of official practice for the seventh running of the Superkarts! USA SpringNationals, I can’t help but think about the fact that national-level karting is on the verge of being able to finally move to the next level.  During my 20 years […]

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Morning Coffee – Friday, January 8

Digging Daytona - Back at the Beach

Jan 08, 2016
Written by Rob Howden | 1 Comment

It had been a handful of years since I’d made the trek to Daytona for WKA Kartweek, jumping onto a plane bound for Florida while still digesting my second helping of Christmas dinner. After attending a string of the events in the late 2000s, I succumbed to the pressure of logging in some family holiday […]

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