Home Forums General Karting Discussion Dirt vs Sprint chassis difference?

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    • #34175
      Chris Hurst

      Hey guys,

      I have a friend who just bought a dirt track chassis with a clone GX390 engine with hopes of taking it to sprint kart tracks. We’ve been in a bit of discussion as it was my understanding that dirt track chassis are physically different than sprint kart chassis in terms of where the driver seat mounts etc.

      When he asked me I advised him to buy a purpose built sprint kart chassis like a CRG, Tony etc. Can anyone enlighten me as to the differences if there are any between the two? My neighbor in NC raced dirt oval clones and when I drove his it was extremely different than my 07 EVX Tony.

      From a design stand point what are the differences aside from the tire sizes? Thanks for any help, just trying to learn more.

    • #34184
      Walt Gifford

      Dirt chassis is usually left turn only (LTO) which means the rear axle bearings are offset to the right. If it’s a straight up chassis set up for oval you can run it on a sprint track by putting the same wheels and tires on both sides and centering everything up.


      FAA certified jet engine and aircraft technician,
      Nicholson Speedway class champion 2001,
      Yamaha KT100 Service Center,
      41 years karting experience

    • #34211
      Bob Vehring

      Alot of different types of oval or offset chassis, most of this will depend on which you have.

      Main difference is drivers weight is offset to the left, which is what you want on an oval. That can be adjusted out if you want to by re mount the seat. Most oval karts have the independent camber/caster style front ends which IMO are far superior to the pill type. The also usually have weight jacker rear cassettes which makes changing cross simple by simply turning one bolt while your sitting on the scales. Euro designs usually involve having to loosen the cassette then trying to move the axle up or down in its mounting brackets, or, changing washers in front.

      As for ” will they work” in sprint. I have see some work very well, but one very important thing to remember here, they are made to turn left, or go straight. They are not made to turn right.

      My kids have raced alot of sprint tracks over the last 25 years. On a sprint track, you can never be set up perfectly for every turn because there so different. You decide which are the most important, often leading onto, or at the end of a long straight. Then you look to which are least important, often a series or S type turn where you can’t be set up perfectly for both lefts and rights or turns where its very hard for someone to pass you even if your set up gives something up in that situation. Once you sort that out, you know if its predominately a left hand turn track of a right.

      We have always had both Sprint karts, and oval karts, there are times where if the most important turns are lefts and the rights are either few, or in a place where you not likely to get passed offset karts can definitely win. I think you don’t hear of it much because few people own both so never try it. In the 4 cy world where we also have oval tracks around us and some people do both, you do see it happen occasionally and on some tracks it works well. If its a right hand based track, don’t even bother.

      Think about the logic here, A oval kart is designed totally to be fast in left hand turns, a sprint kart can’t come close to it, so if your track layout supports it, it my work very well, or, not at all

    • #34212
      Chris Hurst

      Thanks a lot for the replies guys. I got a lot more information than I was expecting. I was just trying to understand if they were sort of stuck in their  respective forms of racing. Didn’t know they made centered oval track karts since when I lived in NC and dirt tracking was the dominant form of karting I only saw offset chassis being used.

      Appreciate the insight and we plan on going out in his modified GX390 sometime soon to compare to my TaG 2007 EVX with a 1st gen PRD Motor. Should be fun to compare the two and see how they feel on a track like Grange which has both left and right hand corners.

    • #34271
      John Kuntze

      Another thing you need to be careful with an oval chassis there a good chance it will tip over when you make a right hand turn when you go through a sharp corner.

    • #37941
      Chris Hurst

      hahaha of course John.

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