The FIA World Motorsport Council has confirmed the introduction of a new engine and class to karting, aimed at National level racing.
Based on the current 125cc OK-J (Junior) and OK (Senior) engines, the OK-N will be a ‘downsized’ version, but the FIA has not yet provided any technical specifications.
“Using the current OK engine as the foundation will result in cost savings since the spare parts already exist” the FIA advised. “The fact that this is a downsized version will gain reliability.”
To make the new engine more attractive to National markets, FIA Karting has a sporting objective of creating an OK-N World Cup, for which participants will need to qualify via national events.
With the FIA expecting the various ASNs to conduct race events for OK-N, we approached Karting Australia for its take on the matter.
The OK-N concept had previously been presented by CIK-FIA Executive Secretary Alban Martinet to Karting Australia’s senior management in a private briefing in mid-May.
“It is an exciting concept both in terms of the pathway that CIK-FIA are striving to create and the senior engine itself – which is similar in many characteristics to the KA2 (Junior) engine that has proven to be so popular at Australian Kart Championship over the past 8 years,” Karting Australia CEO Kelvin O’Reilly informed KartSportNews.
“Lee Hanatschek and I were both very impressed with the overall OK-N concept which is still in its very early stages of development. It is a question of how it fits into Karting Australia’s high performance competition structure in the future.
“As the FIA and Motorsport Australia’s delegate for Karting in Australia, we have very strong relationships with both the FIA and CIK-FIA and we are in regular contact with the sport’s World Governing body for motorsport.”
The proposed OK-N World Cup will have strict limits placed on equipment, with just the one chassis, one engine and a set-and-a-half of tyres available.
The FIA will recommend to the ASNs to use these same limited-equipment regulations to create a pathway between events on the national market and the higher level.
The current plan is to run the OK-N World Cup on the same weekend as the current OK and OK-J World Championships. The FIA said the logic behind this is it “will give drivers participating in the OK-N World Cup a chance to make themselves known to karting manufacturers on-site.”
“Now that the OK-N concept has been approved by the World Motorsport Council, Karting Australia looks forward to receiving further updated information as it becomes available on the next steps that will be taken to give life to the OK-N category,” added O’Reilly.
“One thing that is certain is that Karting Australia will be at the forefront of OK-N because of the opportunities we believe that it can create for our national competitions and the pathways that it can create internationally.”
- sporting regulations update bulletin HERE
- technical regulations update bulletin HERE
- homologation regulations update bulletin HERE