KA Update: Australian Karter

Welcome to Australian Karter and to the start of 2020.

It’s hard to believe that we’re already two months into the New Year. Karting competitions are all either in full swing or just about to start.

KART FUN

I mentioned to you at the end of last year that as a New Year Resolution we should make 2020 The Year Of Fun In Karting.

It’s great to see some of our Clubs start the year with Kart Fun and Welcome to 2020 social days – just for fun as a precursor to the competition season revving up. Kart Fun sessions are easy to organise, cheap to run and can bring a whole new element to your Club karting activities. The details of how to run them are on pages 290 and 291 of the 2020 Manual.

GIRLS RACE TOO!

Seeing more female competitors feature on the track is the goal.

We all know that ‘Girls Race Too’ and my challenge to our Clubs is for you all to do more to encourage the girls – no matter what their age, to get racing. Girls, join with me in asking your Club to run a separate Ladies Trophy for 2020. Its simple to do, just follow the AKC Ladies Trophy lead – extract the Club Championship points for all of the girls who are racing at your Club and combine them is a Ladies Trophy Points Tally.

Full marks to the Townsville Club for scheduling the first “GIRLS RACE TOO” event on 14 March. A great idea and something that is sure to keep the momentum building.

Girls, if you’re thinking about starting to race, my tip is to try 4SS. It’s the perfect starting platform. It’s the cheapest class to run in, it’s simple and not technically complex and most of all it’s a Class that is based around the drivers having fun and enjoying racing.

SP TOOLS CLUB DRIVER RANKINGS

SP Tools Club Driver Rankings is back for 2020 and there are a number of Clubs that have recorded their first CDR points for the year already.

ULTIMATE CLUB RACER

Back for 2020 (but not until mid-November) is Ultimate Club Racer II. The venue will be announced shortly but I can tell you now that the event is shaping to be held in South Australia.

UCR1 was a great success and we are looking to build upon that in 2020. Considered by many as the Club Racer’s National Title – the Silver Plate, an expanded prize pool thanks to SP Tools, a great social karting event combined with round two of Karting’s State Of Origin will make this a not to be missed race meeting aimed specifically for the karter who is competing at their local Club

SP TOOLS JUNIOR SPROCKETS PROGRAM

The Junior Sprockets year has well and truly started with the trip to WA and great sessions at Tiger Kart Club and Bunbury City Kart Clubs in February.
A fantastic initiative by both Clubs was an offer of free Club membership for year 1 (to go with the free practice licence that KA and the State Association provide) to all participants in the program at their Clubs.

Our next SP Tools Junior Sprockets program will be in Adelaide at the Southern Go Kart Club’s Bolivar Raceway on Saturday, 21 March followed by the Oakleigh Go-Kart Racing Club in Melbourne on Monday, April 6.

If you know of someone from these areas that have a child interested in the sport, this program is the perfect opportunity for them to start. Registrations are limited and available here for Adelaide and here for Melbourne.

Alongside the Junior Sprockets program is also the Junior Sprockets PLUS program. Junior Sprockets PLUS is designed for those children that are actively involved in the sport and understand the basics of karting. The program has been specifically tailored to focus on driving techniques and race craft to provide current licence holders with a boost in their racing.

The registrations for the Junior Sprockets PLUS program are available here for Adelaide and here for Melbourne.

MAJOR SERIES COMPETITIONS

The major Victorian Series competitions kicked off on successive weekends at the start of February.

The Golden Power Series and the DPE Victorian Country series combined entry numbers enjoyed a combined increase on the corresponding events from last year. After some great initiatives, the Golden Power Series enjoyed a 30% boost in entry numbers on 2019. It has been a great start to the year by both competitions with more than 200 karters participating in each event.

AUSTRALIAN KART CHAMPIONSHIP

The SP Tools Australian Kart Championship presented by Castrol EDGE fired into action at The Bend Motorsport Park in South Australia last weekend. It was yet another record-breaking entry list for Australia’s premier karting competition. Its great testament to the work of our National Events team to put the AKC together and to our competitors who have made this the biggest national karting championship in the Southern hemisphere and one of the best run Championships in the world today.

The weekend saw great racing, an incredible list of talented drivers on the entry list and a great event to start the year at Australia’s newest karting facility.

Round 2 will be held from April 17 to 19 at Eastern Lions Kart Club – now the largest karting club in Victoria – based on current licenced holders.

FORMULA 1 ROLEX AUSTRALIAN GRAND PRIX PROMOTION

The Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix is only a week away. Karting Australia is an Official Partner of the event and our presence at Australia’s premier international motor racing events will be the largest ever.

Here’s what’s happening at the Grand Prix:

  • Karting Australia largest ever Grand Prix display and stand in the Innovation Area at the track;
  • Mass drive-by around the full Grand Prix Track by 40 Cadet and Junior Drivers immediately prior to F1 Qualifying on Saturday;
  • Future Formula 1 Stars (involving 52 Karting Grid Kids) at the head of the grid during the pre-race ceremonies just before lights out for the F1 race.
  • This follows on from a Grand Prix celebrity kart race that was held at the Go Kart Club of Victoria’s Todd Rd Karting complex at the end of February.

The Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix has increased our involvement each year that we have been working them – a reflection of how important the Grand Prix world sees that karting is to motorsport.

I’d like to thank Andrew Westacott, Craig Fletcher and the team at the AGPC for their ongoing partnership with Karting Australia.

SPORTS COMMUNITY BUILDING BETTER KART CLUBS WEBINARS

We are now in week 2 of the Sports Community Webinar series that is available for our Clubs Committee’s to participate in.

All affiliated Clubs have been given the opportunity to participate in the series of 9 different webinars at no cost to them. Karting Australia is paying the fees to enable our Clubs – their key personnel and leaders – to participate in the program.

Each of the nine topics runs for one hour a week for four weeks.

OFFICIALS TRAINING

We will soon be launching Karting Australia’s first online training program for our volunteer officials.

The first five courses are currently in testing, with more courses to be developed in the coming weeks and months. The Officials in each State will continue to be managed by their State Officials Co-ordinator. The whole program is being developed nationally so that there is consistency of message and learning points.

Once the KARTING AUSTRALIA OFFICIALS ACADEMY is fully functional, we will be reviewing the Official’s Upgrade Policy and process so that credit for having completed the on-line learning courses is taken into account when it comes to upgrading officials.

SP TOOLS RENEWS SPONSORSHIP

Our New Year got off to the best possible start with our long-time sponsor Austech Industries signing on for the next 2 years as our Premier Partner with their SP TOOLS and TORINI brands.

Austech Industries and in particular Managing Director, Kevin Davis have been a magnificent supporter of Karting Australia over the years and we welcome SP Tools and Torini engines back for 2020 and 2021 with their support extending across all levels of Australian karting. On behalf of the Board and all of our members, I would like to thank, Kevin, Tom, April and Julie for their on-going support.

MOVED TO QUEENSLAND

Over the summer holidays, Karting Australia moved our national office to Queensland. Most of our staff were already residents of the Sunshine State and when the opportunity arose for us to move into new offices with everyone under the one roof, it was an opportunity that was too good to pass up.

MAJOR DATES TO REMEMBER FOR THE REST OF THE YEAR

2020 SP Tools Australia Kart Championship presented by Castrol EDGE

Round 2
17-19 April – Eastern Lions Kart Club, Seymour, VIC

Round 3
19-21 June – Ipswich Kart Club, Ipswich, QLD

Round 4
31 July – August 2 – Newcastle Kart Club, Cameron Park, NSW

Round 5
18 – 20 September – Go Kart Club of Victoria, Port Melbourne, VIC

Rotax Pro Tour

Round 1
21/22 March – Go Kart Club of Victoria, Port Melbourne, VIC

Round 2
16/17 May – Ipswich Kart Club, Ipswich, QLD

Round 3
18/19 July – North Shore Kart Club, Eastern Creek, NSW

Round 4
29/30 August – Albury Wodonga Kart Club, Wodonga, VIC

National Cup Events
22 – 24 October – Race of Stars, Xtreme Karting – Gold Coast, QLD
13 – 15 November – Ultimate Club Racer – TBA, SA

State Championships
3 – 5 April – Victorian Kart Championship, Oakleigh, VIC
1 – 3 May – SA Kart Championship, Bolivar, SA
3 – 5 July – Queensland Kart Championship, Emerald, QLD
10 – 12 July – NT Kart Championship, Darwin, NT
25 – 27 September – WA Kart Championship, Mid-West, Geraldton, VIC
2 – 4 October – NSW Kart Championship – Sapphire Kart Club, Bega, NSW
27 – 29 November – Tasmania Kart Championship, Launceston, TAS

Business Conference and Major Promotional Dates
AGM – 26 May
BBKC Conference – 22-23 August
Grand Prix Promotion – 12 – 15 March
National Karting Awareness Month – November

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