Home Forums General Karting Discussion Advice to a Newbie

This topic contains 64 replies, has 12 voices, and was last updated by  Ambrose Buldo 1 year, 3 months ago.

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  • #84198

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    Hey all,

    I’m exploring the world of Karting as I am eager to get racing, but still don’t have the budget for SCCA/NASA Spec Miata/E46 builds and such.

    I know all the large Karting associations, but I’m curious as to how to get started. I am from NJ and there is a series called the F Series State Championship, has anyone heard/or know about this? What series’s cater to Novice Karting?

    Can any advise me to some websites/videos to check out when getting started?

    Additional info, I am 21 years old in NJ and have the budget for a Kart/spares and a truck for transportation.

    Thank you,

    Gene

  • #84244

    Morgan Schuler
    Participant

    The F Series is a great regional series but I wouldn’t start there. That series is for the experienced racer not someone new to the sport.

    You can search for tracks in your area here: https://www.kartpulse.com/tracksandseries/map

    Oakland Valley Race Park (www.ovrp.net) is one track/club to look at.

    Go check out the racing at your local track. I would start with club racing a Briggs and Stratton LO206. The 206 is cheap to own and operate so you can focus on learning to drive.

    • #84281

      Ambrose Buldo
      Participant

      They have totally repaved and reconfiged OVRP in the Winter. Great Track. A real track with elevation changes. Grippy, fast, smooth and Challanging. They offer TAG Rentals as well. I may be up there later this week.

      I don’t think I’ve ever seen a L206 up there… Mostly TAG. Track was mostly Rotax, which is what we ran until a few weeks ago. Just switched over to the Vortax ROK as track now supports that brand. Most common Kart Brand is Tony Kart, Followed by Briel. Kart brand does not make much difference as most part most parts are interchangeable.

      I’ve helped some friends get into the sport. $2,500 -$3,000 gets you a decent package. They all went Rotax, which is probably the lowest safest bet if going TAG.

    • #84298

      Dom Callan
      Participant

      Gene,

      Am in same boat as you. The only thing I could find that seems to fit the bill is through full tilt karting at the englishtown raceway. I am headed there Saturday to speak to them and go round in circles on their tag kart. They seem to run more than just arrive and drive services.

      I will ask about racing leagues etc. for us older farts (I am 47) and will let you know what they have to say.

       

      • #84359

        Wade Wishneski
        Participant

        Gene, Am in same boat as you. The only thing I could find that seems to fit the bill is through full tilt karting at the englishtown raceway. I am headed there Saturday to speak to them and go round in circles on their tag kart. They seem to run more than just arrive and drive services. I will ask about racing leagues etc. for us older farts (I am 47) and will let you know what they have to say.

        Dom

        Go there Saturday and rent a TAG kart from Full Tilt and run it to get an idea of karting.  Talk with Full Tilt, they are a Tony Kart dealer.  As for your age, I’m 52 and racing the F Series State Championship Series is perfect, 10 races and I’m fairly competitive in that series.  Other dealers will be there on Saturday as well, including Compkart dealers.

  • #84246

    Matt Martin
    Participant

    There’s plenty of places in the area – NJMP, Englishtown, OVRP, Summit Point, Sandy Hook, etc.

    I run with the Woodbridge Kart Club at Summit Point, and would like to run some of the F-series events, too.

    i would suggest finding yourself a newish used TAG kart, and go with any of the local clubs.  Sanctioning bodies are always looking to add racers to their weekends; as such, they and everyone else at the tracks tend to be friendly and helpful to new karters.

  • #84269

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    The F Series is a great regional series but I wouldn’t start there. That series is for the experienced racer not someone new to the sport. You can search for tracks in your area here: https://www.kartpulse.com/tracksandseries/map Oakland Valley Race Park (www.ovrp.net) is one track/club to look at. Go check out the racing at your local track. I would start with club racing a Briggs and Stratton LO206. The 206 is cheap to own and operate so you can focus on learning to drive.

    I will definitely check out OVRP… I was unaware there were so many tracks nearby.

    As far as the LO206 goes, what is the most popular chassis this is used with? Or does it vary?

    Where do I look for Karts? It seems like RacingJunk has quite a few listed, or are there other retails that typically deal with used karts?

    Thanks.

  • #84270

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    There’s plenty of places in the area – NJMP, Englishtown, OVRP, Summit Point, Sandy Hook, etc. I run with the Woodbridge Kart Club at Summit Point, and would like to run some of the F-series events, too. i would suggest finding yourself a newish used TAG kart, and go with any of the local clubs. Sanctioning bodies are always looking to add racers to their weekends; as such, they and everyone else at the tracks tend to be friendly and helpful to new karters.

    I have seen that TAG and LO206 are both very popular, which one would run me slightly lower in cost/maintenance? And what is a good ballpark price that each of these would cost me up front? (complete kart w/ chassis and engine).

    Thanks so much guys.

  • #84271

    Wade Wishneski
    Participant

    To clarify, the F Series does promote a series of events called the State Championship Series which comprises 10 events split between New Jersey Motorsports Park (NJMP) & Englishtown.  This is a good club type series and runs separately from the The F Series Gear Up events which is comprised of 6 events.  If you’re in the NJ area, the F Series State Championship and Oakland Valley (OVRP) are both good options.  We run the full State Championship series and select F Series Gear Up events.  In this area though, LO206 has not really taken off as much as some have tried, so your viable option really is TAG.  Full Tilt Racing does offer rentals at the State Championship events if you’d really like to try it before diving into karting.  FYI: there is a State Championship event this weekend at Englishtown, NJ

    http://www.thestatechampionship.com/

  • #84274

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    To clarify, the F Series does promote a series of events called the State Championship Series which comprises 10 events split between New Jersey Motorsports Park (NJMP) & Englishtown. This is a good club type series and runs separately from the The F Series Gear Up events which is comprised of 6 events. If you’re in the NJ area, the F Series State Championship and Oakland Valley (OVRP) are both good options. We run the full State Championship series and select F Series Gear Up events. In this area though, LO206 has not really taken off as much as some have tried, so your viable option really is TAG. Full Tilt Racing does offer rentals at the State Championship events if you’d really like to try it before diving into karting. FYI: there is a State Championship event this weekend at Englishtown, NJ http://www.thestatechampionship.com/

    Wade, thanks for the info, and thanks for giving me a heads up on the LO206 popularity.

    I was actually going to do a Full Tilt rental at Englishtown sometime this summer to see how I feel about it. I’m assuming Full Tilt does rent out TAG karts?

    Out of curiosity, what is a fair price for a complete used TAG kart?

    Thanks guys!

  • #84277

    Matt Martin
    Participant

    There’s plenty of places in the area – NJMP, Englishtown, OVRP, Summit Point, Sandy Hook, etc. I run with the Woodbridge Kart Club at Summit Point, and would like to run some of the F-series events, too. i would suggest finding yourself a newish used TAG kart, and go with any of the local clubs. Sanctioning bodies are always looking to add racers to their weekends; as such, they and everyone else at the tracks tend to be friendly and helpful to new karters.

    I have seen that TAG and LO206 are both very popular, which one would run me slightly lower in cost/maintenance? And what is a good ballpark price that each of these would cost me up front? (complete kart w/ chassis and engine). Thanks so much guys.

    LO206/4-cycle stuff is probably the easiest on the wallet for maintenance.

     

    I’m less well versed on 4-stroke stuff, but you can get a good running TAG setup for $2.5-5k depending on what you want, or how competitive of a kart you want out of the box.

     

    Check the Classifieds on this forum, as well as ebay, and racing junk.  In addition head to your local track(s) on a race weekend and you’ll often see karts for sale in and around the paddock.

  • #84283

    Wade Wishneski
    Participant

    Gene

    Yes try the Full Tilt rental first.  Yes they rent out TAGs, typically a Leopard motor.

    If your interested in getting involved, it should be a TAG kart, especially in the NJ, PA, NY, and New England states, region of the country.  LO206 is not catching on.

    As for pricing, do yourself a favor and buy a good used kart.  IMO, a Tony, Compkart or Birel are your best bets for support and tunability in this region of the country.  Yes there are other brands but these are by far the most popular TAG karts in the NJ region.  I’m not a salesman, this is just an objective observation.  Price $3000 – $3500 for a good used Tony kart  or Compkart.  As for motor, go with a IAME X30.  Again, by far the most popular in the NJ region.  It is also fairly easy to tune & maintain.  You can find good used X30’s for about $2200 – $2500.  As for finding good used equipment, talk with dealers in this region, i.e. Kaos Kart Shop, Full Tilt, J3 Competition.  As for an X30, this EKN site has been a good option.  I’ve personally bought 3 – X30’s from guys on this site and all have been a good experience!

    • #84651

      Michael Neopolitan
      Participant

      Hey there Wade hope you’ve been well. Don’t know if JB mentioned, but I have to “$tep away” from karting for a while and I’m looking to sell my stuff. I’d be grateful if you spread the word if you have anyone at e-town or NJMP looking.    CompKart Covert 3.0 2016 with Sr Rotax (EVO conversion).

  • #84284

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    They have totally repaved and reconfiged OVRP in the Winter. Great Track. A real track with elevation changes. Grippy, fast, smooth and Challanging. They offer TAG Rentals as well. I may be up there later this week. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a L206 up there… Mostly TAG. Track was mostly Rotax, which is what we ran until a few weeks ago. Just switched over to the Vortax ROK as track now supports that brand. Most common Kart Brand is Tony Kart, Followed by Briel. Kart brand does not make much difference as most part most parts are interchangeable. I’ve helped some friends get into the sport. $2,500 -$3,000 gets you a decent package. They all went Rotax, which is probably the lowest safest bet if going TAG.

    Ambrose, thanks for the info.

    Searching around I have seen a decent amount of Tony Kart and Briel karts on the classifieds of different sites. So some of the TAG karts go with one of those chassis and a Rotax engine, correct?

    I would also like to go to the OVRP track one day as I am not too far from it, to watch some of the open practice and learn more about the track/sport.

    Perhaps we would link up and meet up there one week? None of my friends are into karting so I don’t have much of baseline for knowledge, although these forums are helping me a good bit.

    Thanks again everyone.

  • #84286

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    Gene Yes try the Full Tilt rental first. Yes they rent out TAGs, typically a Leopard motor. If your interested in getting involved, it should be a TAG kart, especially in the NJ, PA, NY, and New England states, region of the country. LO206 is not catching on. As for pricing, do yourself a favor and buy a good used kart. IMO, a Tony, Compkart or Birel are your best bets for support and tunability in this region of the country. Yes there are other brands but these are by far the most popular TAG karts in the NJ region. I’m not a salesman, this is just an objective observation. Price $3000 – $3500 for a good used Tony kart or Compkart. As for motor, go with a IAME X30. Again, by far the most popular in the NJ region. It is also fairly easy to tune & maintain. You can find good used X30’s for about $2200 – $2500. As for finding good used equipment, talk with dealers in this region, i.e. Kaos Kart Shop, Full Tilt, J3 Competition. As for an X30, this EKN site has been a good option. I’ve personally bought 3 – X30’s from guys on this site and all have been a good experience!

    Wade, thanks for the quick response.

    To clarify, are you talking about $3000-3500 for only the kart chassis? Or complete kart? Later on you say the IAME X30 runs about $2200-2500, which would put the total at a potential for over $5000, which I know can happen. But others on here have said I can get a pretty decent complete package starting at around $2500.

    Just trying to clear some things up in my plans!

    Thanks again Wade, Ambrose, Matt, for the quick responses.

    • #84353

      Wade Wishneski
      Participant

      Gene

      A good used chassis = $3000 – $3500

      A decent used X30 = $2200 – $2500

      Mychron 5 new = $500

      Do yourself a favor and buy good used stuff & save yourself the agg of replacing that “decent used package” later.  Been there , done that already and I’ve only been karting 2.5 years now.  Yes it’ll be roughly $5500 – $6000 but I’m being honest.  Spend a couple $$ upfront to save later.

      Also, IMHO, don’t buy a Rotax, they are now a thing of the past in the USA and at this point who is supporting the Rotax??  Again, in the NJ area, go with an X30, by far the most popular motor in the area and real easy to get IAME parts.  I’m not saying its the cheapest or most economical motor, but by far most common motor on karts in the NJ area.

       

       

  • #84300

    FREDDY SANDOVAL
    Participant

    Just run LO206, there is something about that class that is too much fun!!! Hard to describe, but we have ran many different classes and engine packages through the years, and LO206 is so much fun, with out all the stress of engine/clutch tuning etc. Just set up your correct gear ratio, put gas and go.

    It is so cheap to run, all you gotta do is change the motor oil every race weekend, they use cheap pump gas.

    TAG, Yamaha KT100 can get pretty expensive with rebuilds every 3 to 4 races if you wanna stay competitive, new clutches are around $365, plus you have to run race fuel and pre mix every race, ad another $95 to $105.

    Just do LO206 for a season or 2 till you get real good at it, then switch to whatever engine you want.

     

    Anyhow just my 2 cents.

  • #84306

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    Gene, Am in same boat as you. The only thing I could find that seems to fit the bill is through full tilt karting at the englishtown raceway. I am headed there Saturday to speak to them and go round in circles on their tag kart. They seem to run more than just arrive and drive services. I will ask about racing leagues etc. for us older farts (I am 47) and will let you know what they have to say.

    Dom,

    Keep me updated on what they say. Also try to get them to tell you the popularity of the different available series/classes.

    And have fun in TAG kart!

    Thanks again.

  • #84309

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    Just run LO206, there is something about that class that is too much fun!!! Hard to describe, but we have ran many different classes and engine packages through the years, and LO206 is so much fun, with out all the stress of engine/clutch tuning etc. Just set up your correct gear ratio, put gas and go. It is so cheap to run, all you gotta do is change the motor oil every race weekend, they use cheap pump gas. TAG, Yamaha KT100 can get pretty expensive with rebuilds every 3 to 4 races if you wanna stay competitive, new clutches are around $365, plus you have to run race fuel and pre mix every race, ad another $95 to $105. Just do LO206 for a season or 2 till you get real good at it, then switch to whatever engine you want. Anyhow just my 2 cents.

    Freddy,

    I do like the idea of a cheaper to maintain kart, but I would want to be doing more than just hotlaps around a track with no one in my class. A few of the guys on here say in my area LO206 isn’t too popular… so I would be hesitant because of the lack of participation. Maybe I can find a certain series where a handful of guys run the LO206 and get some more info from them.

    It does seem like the LO206 is cheaper/easier to maintain, but the drawback seems like there is less than ideal competition (in my area)… so I will have to try to weigh each of those pros/cons in my head.

    I would appreciate if any of the local guys could chip in on this. Maybe I could go LO206 and learn my skills and hotlap and solo/autocross (if thats an option) before I move to a more competitive class. Maybe I will even find a few more LO206 guys to race with.

    Please let me know what you guys think.

    -Gene

  • #84329

    Ambrose Buldo
    Participant

    I was there was a strong LO206 or 100cc field at OVRP, but there is not. The engine package is more important than the chassis for support. If I went the LO206 Route, I’d be running alone or being a obsticial in the Tag sessions.

    Yes, TAG Karts are fast and you are better off learning on a slower Kart, but if you intend to race or do at least competitive lapping, you need to take into consideration at least what your local track club series supports. At least in TAG, a Leopard competes against a Rotax which competes against x-30, which competes against a ROK. We were all on track Sunday, running more or less same lap times. Here is some just processed Video. iKart at OVRP

  • #84331

    FREDDY SANDOVAL
    Participant

    Well, sorry, I had no Idea how low in numbers you guys were in your town, here in Cali we have plenty kart counts, just in LO206  last year we had 36 karts, and keeps growing, most states in the country are embracing that class and it’s growing very rapidly, I’m really surprised it hasn’t taken off in your town.

    Some of the TAG motor packages you guys mentioned are boat anchors here, and at many race tracks are no longer supported, or any class available for them, yes they let them run with other TAG motors but there’s no class for them.

    My buddy had a brand new TAG X30 package, he only used it about 2 to 3 times, then ran one race with us at the LO206 class, he loved it so much he sold his 3 race old X30 package. Keep in mind we have ran many classes in the passed, now we only focus on LO206 and shifter karts SKUSA only.

    I would highly recommend to look harder and make absolutely sure what strong classes run at your local track, or even if you have to travel 1 to 2 hours to get to a good track with a big class it may be worth it.

    Sorry, I’m just trying to help, and no I would not like for you to do hot laps by yourself either, but you did mention you were considering LO206 That’s why I recommended it that’s all.

    Do you guys have a massive amount of TAG karts there? What are the numbers each race weekend?

    This is what it looks like here in Cali for SKUSA  or Tri-C Karters

    About 86 shifter karts on the grid

  • #84333

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    I was there was a strong LO206 or 100cc field at OVRP, but there is not. The engine package is more important than the chassis for support. If I went the LO206 Route, I’d be running alone or being a obsticial in the Tag sessions. Yes, TAG Karts are fast and you are better off learning on a slower Kart, but if you intend to race or do at least competitive lapping, you need to take into consideration at least what your local track club series supports. At least in TAG, a Leopard competes against a Rotax which competes against x-30, which competes against a ROK. We were all on track Sunday, running more or less same lap times. Here is some just processed Video. iKart at OVRP

    Ambrose,

    I watched your vid, it looks fun!

    There is really almost no one else who would run a LO206? What can you say about the maintenance of a TAG kart? Is it really that expensive?

    Thank you to all for the help.

  • #84334

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    Well, sorry, I had no Idea how low in numbers you guys were in your town, here in Cali we have plenty kart counts, just in LO206 last year we had 36 karts, and keeps growing, most states in the country are embracing that class and it’s growing very rapidly, I’m really surprised it hasn’t taken off in your town. Some of the TAG motor packages you guys mentioned are boat anchors here, and at many race tracks are no longer supported, or any class available for them, yes they let them run with other TAG motors but there’s no class for them. My buddy had a brand new TAG X30 package, he only used it about 2 to 3 times, then ran one race with us at the LO206 class, he loved it so much he sold his 3 race old X30 package. Keep in mind we have ran many classes in the passed, now we only focus on LO206 and shifter karts SKUSA only. I would highly recommend to look harder and make absolutely sure what strong classes run at your local track, or even if you have to travel 1 to 2 hours to get to a good track with a big class it may be worth it. Sorry, I’m just trying to help, and no I would not like for you to do hot laps by yourself either, but you did mention you were considering LO206 That’s why I recommended it that’s all. Do you guys have a massive amount of TAG karts there? What are the numbers each race weekend? This is what it looks like here in Cali for SKUSA or Tri-C Karters About 86 shifter karts on the grid

    Freddy,

    I appreciate the quick response. I may be going to a few events in the future to walk around and learn more about the events/kart counts. I don’t know how little participation there is in LO206, but it seems like very little. I would probably travel to OVRP, Englishtown and NJMP, to see what the different participation rates are at each of those locations.

    From a little searching it seems like the up front cost of a TAG kart and a LO206 are a little closer than I expected. The big difference here seems to be the maintenance…

    Maybe I can get some info from a few TAG guys on what their annual expenses are for maintaining their karts. Anyone have something to chip in on this topic?

    Thanks everyone, this forum is great!

  • #84337

    Ambrose Buldo
    Participant

    Rotax 50Hrs on Standard Rebuild, $1450, had no issues, top end 25 hrs, half that price

    Ran pump gas, Motol oil at 50:1, $17 per liter

    Maybe another $400 between rebuilds. Reeds, matting, filters, sparkplugs, etc

    Everything else is probably the same regadless of engine… Seat, tires, lube, chain, brakes, sprockets

    Until something breaks, the Rotax is as reliable as a TAG engine gets. Then parts get expensive.

  • #84340

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    Rotax 50Hrs on Standard Rebuild, $1450, had no issues, top end 25 hrs, half that price Ran pump gas, Motol oil at 50:1, $17 per liter Maybe another $400 between rebuilds. Reeds, matting, filters, sparkplugs, etc Everything else is probably the same regadless of engine… Seat, tires, lube, chain, brakes, sprockets Until something breaks, the Rotax is as reliable as a TAG engine gets. Then parts get expensive.

    Ambrose thanks again for the response,

    That is about what I had in mind for maintenance… I will continue to research and learn more about the local community, hopefully I can get to a few events this year to just watch and learn, maybe make a few contacts, etc.

    Thanks again for all the help guys.

  • #84360

    Ambrose Buldo
    Participant

    I agree the Rotax is becoming less relevant. It is probably caused by their crazy pricing, their Evo Upgrade mess and the disparity between motors they build. That’s why I jumped ship and traded my ROTAX Quasi-Evo in for the ROK. The X-30 was probably a safer bet, but it would of cost me much more to upgrade. Hope with OVRP supporting the ROK, it becomes more common.

    OVRP always has used Karts for sale. Other folks mentioned other sources. Take a ride up to the track, they are open every day. I may go up, sometime during the week or next Sunday. OVRP has rentals availiable everyday except Mondays. Call them direct or hit ovrp.net.

    At 53 YO, going to be racing in their “TAG Masters Class”. Hot sure how competitive I’ll be, but age-wise, I more than qualify.

    If you buy a used engine as part of a package, you should make user you get a good deal. Treat the engine as having very little value unless it is brand new of fresh off a full rebuild by reputable builder.

    • #84377

      Dom Callan
      Participant

      Yep. Already planned and reserved a tag for the 6th and 26th. I’ll be speaking with the owner to get a sense of how to approach this.

      from what I gather they will basically a) sell or rent you a kart, b) storage and trackside delivery, c) tech support on race days etc.

      so now I just need to find out what this all costs, what neophyte race series we (my son and I) can run in, and how much of this my wife will be able to tolerate.

  • #84368

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    Gene A good used chassis = $3000 – $3500 A decent used X30 = $2200 – $2500 Mychron 5 new = $500 Do yourself a favor and buy good used stuff & save yourself the agg of replacing that “decent used package” later. Been there , done that already and I’ve only been karting 2.5 years now. Yes it’ll be roughly $5500 – $6000 but I’m being honest. Spend a couple $$ upfront to save later. Also, IMHO, don’t buy a Rotax, they are now a thing of the past in the USA and at this point who is supporting the Rotax?? Again, in the NJ area, go with an X30, by far the most popular motor in the area and real easy to get IAME parts. I’m not saying its the cheapest or most economical motor, but by far most common motor on karts in the NJ area.

    Wade,

    So I would be looking at 5500-6000 for a competitive setup, and perhaps anywhere between 2000-4000 per year for maintenance depending on how much I race?

    I will definitely go to a Full Tilt rental soon (hopefully with my brother to try and get him hooked) and learn more about what they have to offer.

    Thanks.

  • #84369

    FREDDY SANDOVAL
    Participant

    Yamaha KT100 would be another option, if they still run them in your town

    The rebuilds are a little more affordable, but will be needed every 3 to 4 races if you wanna stay competitive.

    TAG will be overkill for a new driver.

  • #84370

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    Yamaha KT100 would be another option, if they still run them in your town The rebuilds are a little more affordable, but will be needed every 3 to 4 races if you wanna stay competitive. TAG will be overkill for a new driver.

    Freddy,

    I know what you mean with TAG maybe being a lot of kart of a new guy, but it doesn’t seem like any of the other classes get much participation. Hopefully I will find out more soon once I make a few visits around my area.

     

  • #84371

    FREDDY SANDOVAL
    Participant

    Sure, I understand that.

    I just find it hard to believe that there aren’t many classes in NJ

    What are the names of those tracks near you buddy?

     

  • #84376

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    Sure, I understand that. I just find it hard to believe that there aren’t many classes in NJ What are the names of those tracks near you buddy?

    Freddy,

    Oakland Valley Race Park, New Jersey Motorsports Park, and Raceway Park/Englishtown in NJ seem to be the most notable ones near me.

    Thanks

  • #84390

    Ambrose Buldo
    Participant

    Gene,

    Am in same boat as you. The only thing I could find that seems to fit the bill is through full tilt karting at the englishtown raceway. I am headed there Saturday to speak to them and go round in circles on their tag kart. They seem to run more than just arrive and drive services.

    I will ask about racing leagues etc. for us older farts (I am 47) and will let you know what they have to say.

    DOM – You should check out OVRP if it is close to you. I plan on going up Next Tues or Friday for Pratice. On weekdays, there is lite attendance so we get plenty of track time. It typicially ends up being open track sessions 10 AM to 6 PM). You may want to consider Renting a TAG Kart From them. If they are Okay with it, maybe you take a few laps in my Kart. I hope to race the following weekend in there club race, in Masters (Old Guy) Class. It will me my first Kart race in awhile.

  • #84401

    Dom Callan
    Participant

    Ambrose,

    OVRP appears to be about 2.2 hrs which is not far at all, really. Looks like an amazing facility with racing for all ages. It’s definitely on my list to explore. Thanks for the heads up. Have fun next week and good luck in the race.

  • #84409

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    Dom,

    Keep me updated on the info you get from Full Tilt!

    Thanks.

  • #84410

    Dom Callan
    Participant

    Will do. Fingers crossed on weather for Saturday….

  • #84452

    Dom Callan
    Participant

    Ok have spoken to Keith at full tilt. Basically he runs an arrive and drive  plus performance rentals/storage/service. My general understanding is that he will rent or sell you a kart, store it, prep it etc. They will be at the track and for a fee can provide all the support you might need.

    There’s basically two series, gear up and the state championships. He says the primary difference is that the state is always at either englishtown or Millville and that there’s 10-11 races a year. Gear up is 7 races and further afield.

    he says that both series are for anyone, regardless of age and skill. it does not sound very complicated. Sign up, pay, qualify, race. If you are too slow they’ll figure something out.

    both Keith and the other gentleman who runs f series expressed that the only game in town is 125cc tag or shifters. There’s just not enough folks to have other classes.

    lepoard and x30 are the primary engines with lepoard being the economical option.

    more to come if I learn anything else

  • #84457

    Dom Callan
    Participant

    https://youtu.be/lhwEO_xWENg

    Ouch. I am recovering from yesterday (sore and bruised but limbs still attatched).

    Couple other things:

    The rental and kart ownership is the expensive bit. The track time is not expensive. I believe it was $10 at the gate to get into lot and $35 to use the track for the day.

    The day begins at roughly 9am and goes to 4 or 5. They then have 10 minute sessions by class. (Cadets, then teen racers, then older folks, and then also the folks on the 4 stroke rental karts). In the morning they might combine classes to maximize track time (i.e. Senior and rentals together).

    Couple of things to note: different engines will run together in practice so you might be in a tag kart on track with folks in Yamaha or Briggs engines. So clearly speeds are going to be different.

    at first I thought you weren’t supposed to pass people. Turns out that it’s fine to pass, just do so sensibly. There’s no restriction as to when or where you can pass but generally folks were cautious.

    The seniors are very well behaved and careful, the teens appear to be generally really good drivers and are a bit scary to watch because they run very aggressively.

    my day started miserably because the local rule is “if you stall you are done”. If you stall your kart, you will be watching other people go by until the checkered flags drops. My first session ended in turn 3 and my second was a bit better (made it one full lap before stalling out behind a rental Briggs). So really, you don’t want your engine to cut out.

    Skill levels are quite varied and I don’t think anyone new to karting would feel uncomfortable.

    If you make a day of it, it’s basically an all you can eat buffet of driving. I personally had reached the point where I basically was physically destroyed by about 2pm.

    it would appear that the best way to go is to own your own kart. The rental tag kart was fun but fit is an issue. They run huge seats so you are going to be bouncing around in there. My knee and the gas tank had an ongoing argument that my knee lost. Fortunately the rental people have a trailer full of gear so I was able to get a knee pad and I was able to borrow a second rib protector to try to widen my girth a bit.

    Since the OP was wondering about buying a kart, FTR has karts for sale from about $2500 to about $6500 used. I know almost nothing about karts so can’t speak to wether these prices are good, bad or indifferent.

    Bring lots of water. There is a concession stand that makes burgers and the like, but h2o is $3 a bottle at the track. Next time I will visit the local Wawa before coming.

    the track is fun but bumpy in a couple places and you definitely don’t want to clip the red dome marker bumps.

    The rental karts don’t have transponders so you have no clue how your lap times are. I could see folks flipping through their mychrons so I assume if you own a kart, the infrastructure for that sort of data exists there.

    It was nice to meet Wade (thanks for stopping by and introducing yourself).

    Final thought, bring one of those sams club foldable chairs or something.

    Anyways that’s all I can think of. Have fun.

     

  • #84475

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    Dom,

    Thanks for all the info, I hope you had a great time!

    Interesting rule about the ‘you stall you’re out for the session’. But I guess it does make some sense. Interesting also that they skill levels vary as much as they did… I was imagining I would be intimidated by all the veterans but it doesn’t seems like that would be so.

    Thanks again for adding all your knowledge and insight, I’m sure it will help a lot of us who are eager to get started.

    • #84518

      Ambrose Buldo
      Participant

      You rental experance at Engishtown is consistant with what you will find elsewhere. Englishtown while smooth is demanding as you are constantly turning. Renting become expensive vey fast. Once you know you want to pursue it, and know what class you want to run in, you should buy a good used setup. I advise against going new on 1st kart as you will bend it or use it up eventually.

  • #84483

    Dom Callan
    Participant

    If your kart has the capacity to be restarted (like an electric or pull starter) you could get going again.

    The rentals are TAG but they don’t have the electric starter unit battery installed. They crank them over at the start with one of those battery powered thingamabobs.

  • #84502

    Dom Callan
    Participant

     

    Gene,

    Just for fun, I took a look at the race results for the TAG masters race held at Elizabethtown on Sunday.

    7 folks total.

    The top two were neck and neck at .3s difference.

    The number three guy chased the leaders by himself with a 6s gap.

    the next two guys were duking it out 13s off the leaders but .8s of each other.

    the last guy to finish was 23s off the leader. It looks like #7 had to bow out after 5 laps sadly.

    The important bit from a “Can I race here?” Standpoint seems to be “how fast should I be able to get around the track?”.

    Well, the top 5 all posted a best laptime of between 42 and 43 seconds. The last two guys posted 47.8 and 48.6 best lap times.

    So, I’m guessing if you can be anywhere in that range, you are good to go racing.

    With my almost complete lack of skill and experience I think my lap times on practice day were around 45s. So, I guess this means that it would definitely be possible for someone with my level of experience (almost none) to be able to participate and have fun without being a total speed bump.

    https://www.race-monitor.com/Results/Session/6129588

     

     

     

  • #84511

    FREDDY SANDOVAL
    Participant

    Just get a group of people to start that L0206 class, it will grow like weeds after people see how much fun it is.

    Most clubs require  at least 3 karts to make it a class anyway, and after that it won’t take long to grow. There are already 2 of you, just talk to your buddies or guys at the track and see if they wanna run L0206. This class is already big at most tracks and clubs throughout the country.

    Heck I have 4 kart and 2 brand new karts, all L0206.

  • #84553

    Craig Drabik
    Participant

    So..  just a few cents of advice from my own personal experience.

    I currently run the F-Series (not the state championship).  I like it a lot.  I’d take a bit of an issue with it being “for all skill levels”.  I’d say that if you’re a decent driver, you’ll have someone to race with in TaG or F125 and you probably won’t be in the way too much.  If you’re a newbie or one of the slow guys, you’re going to find yourself frustrated by what you perceive to be lack of manners from the fast guys, who in turn will be frustrated that they’re sharing the track with guys in the same class who are a few seconds a lap slower than they are.  Do yourself a favor and go club racing and learn to race before stepping up to a faster stage.

    I started out racing Briggs World Formula – think of it as an LO206 with Yamaha KT-100 levels of power.  It’s an awesome platform for people looking to have fun on the track.  It ran with no rebuilds and just oil changes and pump gas.  My Leopards need rebuilds every 10 hours (at least).  I typically spring for two rebuilds a year.  They run on race gas and 2-stroke oil, which winds up being $15 a gallon.  TaGs burn up tires faster ($225 a set).  Chains on a TaG are disposable unless you run O-ring or Panther chains, and they’re like $60-$80 a pop.  Your costs on an ongoing basis are much, much higher.

    Finally – and I’m sure this isn’t going to be a popular statement – TaG is too fast for a new guy.  You’ll learn more, spend less, have more fun, and get better faster with a lower-power class.  Jumping into TaG is like skipping Formula Ford and F4 and jumping right into F3.

    I can’t speak specifically to the class structures at E-Town, NJMP, and OVRP but I imagine it isn’t TaG or nothing.  Look for a stock 4-cycle class or Yamaha KT-100 class and start there.  Learn to race, learn to work on the kart, learn to tune the carb if you run 2-cycle.  Get a handle on the expenses and how much of a budget you have to race with, then step up to faster equipment or regional and national competition when you’re ready.

    Shameless plug:  I’ve got two Arrow chassis for sale in the Buffalo area :)

  • #84555

    Dom Callan
    Participant

    Thanks for the insight. Believe it or not, the gentleman running the f-series at eTown was quite explicit about TAG or bust. There just isn’t enough participation apparently to support additional engine options for our area. The Sunday race had only 7 guys for masters tag. This isn’t the “gearup” race series, as far as I can tell. That series does seem to be more serious. As far as club racing, there doesn’t seem to be any. Maybe in NJ the f-series (state championship?) is sort of lower key, with f-series gearup being  more for the faster folks?

    What’s interesting is that the tag karts didn’t feel much “faster” than the iame 100 engine I have experience with. What makes it harder are the stickier tires, at least to me.

  • #84557

    Craig Drabik
    Participant

    The Gearup Challenge is the competitive travel version.  The State championship is meant to be more in line with club-level racing.  I’ve never raced in the state championship, but I’d imagine it’d be OK for a beginner.  I don’t know if there are clubs beyond the state championship at E-Town.  OVRP does have club racing, but a quick look at their site does seem to show “TaG or bust” as your senior options.

    I think that’s really unfortunate personally.

    There was a lot I had to learn when I moved up from WF to TaG – chassis tuning is more important, learning to dial in a carb, more wrenching.  I think if I had to learn all that AND learn to drive AND do it with 50% more power than I had before, that would be a lot to handle.

  • #84565

    FREDDY SANDOVAL
    Participant

    Well, looks like most of the experienced guys here in the forum have given you the info and advised to the best of their knowledge and personal experience.

    Looks like at this point you’re just gonna have to decide where and when to pull the trigger.

    I still think that if you and your buddies that wanna start racing should start with L0206, and as soon as the local guys see how much fun, simple and cheap to run they are, they all are gonna wanna buy one and start racing. This may require of you guys to get the ball rolling, talking to people, etc, and once they see it in action they will develop an interest about that class, and who knows you may just start a new thing there.

    Good luck to you both.

    Oh! And if that is what you wanna try, then I have about 6 complete turn key karts available and ready to race. 2 of them are brand new, and 4 of them are 2014’s and 2015’s. It will be a lot cheaper to run, trust me, and the tires do last about 4 to 6 races, depending on track .

  • #84566

    Dom Callan
    Participant

    Thanks for all the feedback and thoughts. I think it’s going to take a few more sessions to decide if I really want to commit to 2 stroke ownership and racing. I do agree that lo206 would be a great way to cut my teeth in racing for all sorts of reasons. The local situation being what it is makes it less appealing, sadly.

  • #84567

    Clark Gaynor Sr.
    Participant

    I’ll just throw this out there, have you new folks considered road racing?   Karts on sports car tracks, eg: Daytona, MidOhio, Summit Point, Kershaw, AMP, Roebling Road, VIR, etc.

    On a road course, a Tag is much less punishing than on a sprint track, AND there are a bunch of them running with the Woodbridge Kart Club.  Also, there are about three of us getting the CIK LO206 Sprint class going, which is a road race class with the World Karting Assoc.  They’re pretty slow on a big track, but they are a LOT of fun, very little work and they don’t bust up equipment.

    The WKC is having a race at Summit Point, August 26th and 27th.  If you’re interested, stop by and check it out.  The WKC has five events per year, two of which are WKA Nationals.  I realize Summit Point, West Virginia isn’t as close as Englishtown, but it might be of interest.

    If you do stop by in a few weeks, please look me up and I’ll give you the cooks tour of road racing.  Also check out the Woodbridge Kart Club and the World Karting Association websites.

    Have fun in your research into the world of kart racing,

    Clark Gaynor Sr.

     

  • #84568

    Brad Nyman
    Participant

    i hate to say it, but it is basically tag or nothing in the nj/pa/ny area…

    I tried to get momentum going for a briggs l0206 class going a little over a year ago, but it never really took off. id love to start something with the class for next year and am trying to figure out what to do now to get it up and running. njmp used to have its own club series years ago, but management let it slip a little and numbers dwindled. Marco and the f series stepped in and created the state championship series to fill the void, but runs njmp and etown in one schedule. It is the closest you’ll get to true “club” racing in NJ.

    all i know, is after a few years away from driving, I’m throwing a lo206 together for next season and hope others follow the idea and something takes off. Tag is too time consuming/expensive for me to try and race a full season at any level next year except maybe a few one off races… BRING ON THE 206!!!

    Force.One motorsports
    Gear up F-series racer

  • #84569

    FREDDY SANDOVAL
    Participant

    I agree

    L0206 is very successful everywhere in the country, and yes in the beginning people were skeptical about it, including myself, and now you look at it!!

    Here in Cali, they had to split it in 3 classes so that it won’t get too crazy with 46 plus to 60 plus karts on the grid, I also see it growing everywhere.

    It won’t be long before many people jump on board.

    Just buy a couple of karts you and your buddy and go to the track, if you come to a place where you thing it wasn’t for you, then sell the whole package for the same amount of money you bought it for. Nothing to lose and a lot to be gain if it works out.

    I wish both of you guys lived here in Cali, I would totally hook you up for a track day or a race day, and you would love it.

    And Brad.

    You should really look into buying a few karts with L0206 packages, start an arrive and drive program, and see what happens. ( Monkey see, Monkey do )

    Won’t be long before everybody starts buying an L0206 package and start racing soon. This is how clubs and classes get started, someone has to take the initiative about it, especially when the sport is not doing too good in your town. There is just something special about that package that makes it so much fun.

    Easy to drive

    Cheap to own and maintain

    Cheap on tires (4 to 6 races )

    Motors will last 3 to 5 years before you throw away ( heck! I can buy a new motor with the money I spend on race gas in one season Lol. )

    Easy on new drivers ( no tuning, no car or clutch adjustment )

    Only concentrate on driving

    You can’t go wrong with it. Just go for it.

     

  • #84572

    Dom Callan
    Participant

    Aargh. You make it sound so accessible. I do love the howl of a two stroke spinning at 15k rpms, but the logistics are so damn complicated (or expensive).

  • #84573

    FREDDY SANDOVAL
    Participant

    I understand, Lol.

    We race shifter karts too. We know the feeling.

    Unfortunately we can’t afford to run 3 classes, so we can only do shifters and L0206, and we’re having fun.

    We’re getting ready to go race here on our next race

  • #84574

    Clark Gaynor Sr.
    Participant

    I know what you mean Freddy.  Even in road racing too many karts gets nuts.  My Son use to run a Stock Honda, and both he and I ran Leopards.  Now he runs an X30 in IAME Sprint and we both run CIK LO206 Sprints.  Wow, what a difference.

    Change the oil each day with the 206’s and oil the chain!!  That’s it.  Maybe check the tire pressure before the race;)  That way we can concentrate on the X30.

    That’s also the reason we’re trying to get the CIK LO206 class going in road racing…they are SO easy.

    Clark.

  • #84575

    FREDDY SANDOVAL
    Participant

    Yup! Lol

    And just because they seem slow doesn’t mean it’s easy to get up front, there are lots of super fast guys running up front.

    I hope it does good in your town buddy, I honestly think it will, it wasn’t too long ago it started here as a small group, and now you can’t throw a rock in any direction and not hit an L0206, now all the big shots running fast karts are doing L0206 because they see how much fun we’re having.

  • #84584

    Craig Drabik
    Participant

    I never understood why the World Formula got so little traction having seen what the 206 has been able to do.  The difference in price isn’t huge, maintenance is about the same, and you have double the power.

  • #84600

    FREDDY SANDOVAL
    Participant

    World Formula is really good too, in my opinion just as fast if not faster than Yamaha KT100 pipe.

    And yes I noticed the numbers are pretty low here too.

    I think just the simplicity, it’s nice not to carry a heavy starter, plus the fact that the L0206 you can’t touch the engine ( sealed motor/spec motor ) more of an even playing field, especially for the beginner. And the world formola you have different builders, different set ups, different power bands, etc.

    And the whole idea of going L0206 was so that new karters, beginners, entry level drivers, or experienced drivers that wanted to keep it low key could do so, with out all the complicity.

    But yeah, I hear you, I was wondering the same thing myself too.

  • #84601

    Craig Drabik
    Participant

    When we ran WF in the WNYKA/Batavia Kart Club, we ran them box stock, stock clutch, exhaust, etc.  We also combined the WF with KT-100 can and stock Animal, using weight to equalize.  We didn’t seal engines so we could keep costs down for folks who wanted to do their own maintenance.  In reality it wasn’t really an issue for us having people tinkering with the engine for performance reasons.

    I think karting tends to go through these cycles where everyone starts to become obsessed with what’s going on with “nationals”, and the clubs tend to evolve to support what’s being run in WKA or SKUSA or F-Series or whatever.  I think that’s proved to be dangerous for the wider sport of karting.  Those packages tend to be more expensive, higher maintenance, and less accessible for new folks or people who just want to have fun in a kart.  I think we’re in one of those cycles now.  Club numbers are down, and we’re left with few accessible options to get new people into the clubs.  The GVKC tries to be accommodating by running tons of classes.  WNYKC tried to use equivalence with weight.  Not sure what the solution is but we need IMHO two steps on the club ladder in terms of speed before people step up to 125cc speed and cost.

  • #84623

    Brian Mead
    Participant

    Gene- welcome to the sport. I hope you have a great time which ever class you choose and stick around. I have both and I have run both, and am older. If your not in great shape, you’ll get worn out in tag. If you end up stuck on the track (inside rear won’t come up) it can be just brutal. You find out what “death grip” means, and you’ll need help to load your equipment. the speeds for tag are simply fantastic, and as said before, if new the learning curve for driving and upkeep is very steep. If you get bit by the bug bad, racing all the time, the money leaves you like water out of a fire hose. I have to agree with the advocates of the lo206, much less expensive (around here $3500 turn-key), cheaper to run (pump gas ), and maintain (forget rebuilds, sealed motor). not nearly as fast, but the difference in lap times for the really good people would surprise you. You might want to expand where you would run rather than stay local for the difference in cost. in 206 you will always be racing someone. In tag they can become parades pretty quick. You can also pick up an older euro frame, cut the back bar and reweld it to clear the chain, and have a very nice setup for very little money.
    again best of luck, hope you have fun.

  • #84655

    Gene Siskoske
    Participant

    Hey all, a ton of replies.. glad we got a conversation going.

    I’ve never thought about road racing a kart on much larger tracks. That’d be sort of surreal experience, after growing up seeing a lot of those tracks on TV/video games/youtube.

    In addition to this LO206/TAG conversation, I may look into racing on larger well known circuits as well. Thanks for the heads up Clark, I will look into those websites you mentioned.

    As far as LO206/TAG… I do wish LO206 was a bit bigger in this area. I’m a personal believer of “driving a slow car fast is better than driving a fast car slow” and this seems like that sort of thing. The extra bonus is cheaper maintenance, cheaper turn key complete kart, etc.

    There has to be (and seems like there is) at least a few of us who feel the same way.

    • #84668

      Wade Wishneski
      Participant

      Hey Mike,

      Yeah, haven’t seen you around for a while so i figured something was up.  Your Comp is a 2016?  Its just a black frame rather than a Flou yellow, correct?

      May be easier to sell without the motor?  Rotax is dead for sure!!  Any idea on what $$$ you may want for it?

    • #84669

      Wade Wishneski
      Participant

      Gene,

      If someone tried hard to get LO206 going it could work in the area, it has proven successful in other areas of the States.  Not everyone who has interest in this sport wants to go 65 mph or spend a fortune on tires and motor rebuilds of $1000 -$1200.  That is the upside to LO206, people want to race something affordable without spending thousands and thousands.  You can still race TAG on a budget, you just have to set that bar on what you want to spend.  For example, I made the decision this past weekend at Etown not to put on new tires for race day and save the $210, unfortunately the tires I used were considerably worn and my performance suffered, but I made that choice since there was so few participants in the Masters class last Sunday.  If there was more participants, I would have put new rubber on the kart, but I felt it wasn’t worth it that day.  My point is you just determine from the outset what you want out of kart racing.

      • #84679

        Michael Neopolitan
        Participant

        don’t really know Wade. I bought it from Sal at the beginning of ’16 for $2800 (so it actually might be a ’15?) It’s a covert 3.0 (Black frame) and Sal said it only had a few events on it.  So I suppose it has most of the NJMP events from last year and at least one or two E-towns; plus the 2-3 NJMP from this year. I’d sell it with the Mychron 4. If you talk to the J3 guys or JB or Sal before I do maybe they can give you and idea. I may reach out to Sal via text soon.  Thx man.

  • #84672

    FREDDY SANDOVAL
    Participant

    Yup, I agree with Wade

    I’ve used the same set of tires all season on my L0206, so far 6 races, and may still get one more.

    The beauty about buying a complete L0206 kart/engine package is that it will be affordable, you get to try it while the class gets some traction, and before you know it there will be lots of people doing it ( I know for fact ) And if you find out you don’t like your kart, then you can sell it for what you paid for.

    Buy if you buy an older TAG kart with and older Rotax or Leopard engine (boat anchor motor ) and you decide you don’t like it, then selling it again might be a bit difficult, you may sit on it for a while and you won’t get the majority of your money back. Almost nobody in the country runs those anymore.

    Listen to the good advise given here by some of us, been there done that.

    You trust us, and can almost be 100 percent that if you and your buddies start going to the track with your L0206 it will grow big, don’t be intimidated by the lack of kart counts. There is a reason why there are so little numbers in your town for TAG karts, but if you invest a little time and money on L0206 it will take off fast, and you will benefit from all the many participants that will start doing it too.

  • #84859

    Ambrose Buldo
    Participant

    I don’t know if there are clubs beyond the state championship at E-Town. OVRP does have club racing, but a quick look at their site does seem to show “TaG or bust” as your senior options.

    There is a club race at OVRP this Sat. You may want to check it out. Pretty good participation. I may run in Tag Masters, but it will be my 1st Kart race in years and 1st with the Ikart + Rok Engine Package. Not expecting to be super competitive, but should be quick enough safely stay out of the way. If they get my starter fixed in time, I may also practice/test on Friday. If you want to rent a Kart, Friday may be a good day to experience the new track.

    I fully support the establishment of a less expensive, slower, less physicialy demanding class. A couple years ago, we informally tried to get a 100CC Class going at OVRP, but were no able to get more than a 1/2 dozen guys a couple times. At that point I was running the KPV Engine. A lot of the same advantages as the L2O6. With a restrictive pipe, similar perforamnce to the more common KT100. Unfortunuitly, did not have anyone to run with on a consistant basis and I and had to drink the Kool-Aid and Go TAG. I went with the Rotax, which is what was supported by the track at the time.

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