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NASCAR's Farm Team

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  • NASCAR's Farm Team

    The Wall Street Journal Weekend Section included an article about the rise of karting. (Sorry, I do not have the ability to post attachments and I do not know why.) The odd thing is it touted the lure of NASCAR but then wnet on to mention discovering the next Mario Andretti, Danica and Scott Speed's background in karting, and Schumacher and Alonso in F1.

    I think the IRL and/or Champ Car would be well served to support karting in a big way in this country in order to develop a fan base among young drivers and their families. I would posit that there is more a natural tie between open wheel and Karting than NASCAR and karting. I realize there is a mini track at the Speedway and I suppose the IRL also supports efforts, but I think they need to be a big time supporter with major visibility at most key events.
    “Jealousy is the tribute mediocrity pays to genius.” -- Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen

  • #2
    Any pictures with that article by chance? If so, what kart numbers? The WSJ sent a photographer/writer to our track and he talked with several of the kids and parents in my son's class as well as shot a ton of photos.
    Dan Schlosser
    Go fast, turn left !
    www.tracksideonline.com

    "Count all your blessings, just don't keep score...."
    Mark "Hoot" Marchetti

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    • #3
      I believe there was a "Stars of tomorrow" featuring karting a couple years ago that CART was sponsoring. PT, Herta and Gidley are very involved. Most of the top names in OW have their own customized karts as well and use them often.
      Trump, he's one of the nicest, most decent human beings possibly ever to walk the planet..

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      • #4
        The IRL now sponsors that series... doesnt really fit the USAC path, but at least they are being realistic about where their drivers will come from.

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        • #5
          'Stars of Tomorrow' severed ties with CART after Pook stopped paying them and Herta had to sue.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Jim Wilke
            'Stars of Tomorrow' severed ties with CART after Pook stopped paying them and Herta had to sue.
            Now Jim, don't go with the gloom and doom on the CC crowd. There was probably a reason CART stopped paying and Herta had to sue to get his money.
            ...Always follow the money

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            • #7
              CART ran out of money, thats why Herta didnt get paid. In case ya missed the bankruptcy hearing and all the creditors.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by gofastturnleft
                Any pictures with that article by chance? If so, what kart numbers? The WSJ sent a photographer/writer to our track and he talked with several of the kids and parents in my son's class as well as shot a ton of photos.
                Yes. I am sorry for the inability to link. Details and highlights:

                PA Mohoning Valley Speedway mechanic Sal Tossona and and Sal Jr. profile.

                Quotes Stars of Karting and World Karting Association.

                Nice large photos of on track action at BeaveRun Pacetrack in Wampum, PA and a young racer at Thompson, OH.

                Profiles of Brandon and Dave McGough at Mohoning.

                Profiles of Jim Schultz.

                Profiles of Michael and Miles Maroney.

                Discusses the scouting at tracks by NASCAR (quotes a RCR employee).
                “Jealousy is the tribute mediocrity pays to genius.” -- Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen

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                • #9
                  The only real problem I see with karting is that they rarely run on ovals. You have these kids coming up and all they have ever done is road racing. It is no wonder these kids are drawn to CCWS and sports cars.

                  Get them racing some ovals.

                  Outlaw

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Outlaw
                    The only real problem I see with karting is that they rarely run on ovals. You have these kids coming up and all they have ever done is road racing. It is no wonder these kids are drawn to CCWS and sports cars.

                    Get them racing some ovals.

                    Outlaw
                    Two of the five major series sanctioned by the WKA (World Karting Association) run on ovals only...

                    From the WKA:

                    Briggs & Stratton Speedway Dirt Series
                    The largest racing series of any karting program in the US, it hosts an average of 800 entries participating in twenty-five 2- and 4-cycle classes per event. Beginning its season each year at the Municipal Stadium in Daytona Beach, people from all over the country come to compete against the best dirt racers in the nation.

                    Rage Karts Speedway Pavement Series
                    Our 4-cycle asphalt series is only 8 years old and has become one of the fastest growing asphalt series in the country. It consists of 22 classes of intense competition racing on asphalt oval tracks of 1/6 mile to 1/4 mile.

                    And then you can add all the regional series running as well..:

                    Baker Winter Series
                    Deep South Series
                    Florida Dirt Series
                    Georgia Dirt Series
                    North Carolina Dirt
                    South Carolina Dirt
                    Virginia Dirt Series

                    And these are without including all the "outlaw" tracks and weekend warriors running without sanctioning bodies... Then include the pavement stuff making a major move as well.

                    There are a TON of oval kart racers out there, it's just that they don't get the notariety that the shifters, ICC and ICA classes get.

                    Enough to merit their own publication.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Cygni
                      CART ran out of money, thats why Herta didnt get paid. In case ya missed the bankruptcy hearing and all the creditors.
                      Herta sued CART a year before they filed bankruptcy, about the time when Pook was telling everybody that they had enough money to run indefinitely.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Outlaw
                        The only real problem I see with karting is that they rarely run on ovals. You have these kids coming up and all they have ever done is road racing. It is no wonder these kids are drawn to CCWS and sports cars.

                        Get them racing some ovals.

                        Outlaw

                        I'll get slammed by a certain segment for saying this but it is true .... most good road racers are going to do well on ovals experience or not - they learn car control and learn what the limit feels like - two important parts of oval racing

                        road racers regularly exceed the "limit" and go thru and past it - something you can not do on an oval - they know and recognise I think more accurately what the limit really is - oval guys and gals don't have that luxury - if they exceed the limit they wad something up

                        experience and history has shown road racers do well out of the box on ovals - while many oval racers would struggle on a road course (and even on ovals in larger formula cars)

                        that said many karting tracks now run ovals - the local one alternates every other weekend bewteen the two

                        Comment


                        • #13

                          This must be a secret test photo for the new IRL spec. After all, only Indycars catch air.
                          I wish I knew - Dennis "Cutty" Wise

                          When its game time, it's pain time! - Terrible Terry Tate

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                          • #14
                            I particularly enjoyed this quote from Pennsylvania kart mechanic Jim Schultz:

                            "I get at least one call a week from a mother asking me how much nitromethane she can run in her kid's kart without breaking the engine."
                            Road racing is doomed...what this country needs is a big new racetrack designed for automobiles instead of horses. C.G. Fisher

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                            • #15
                              Actually ovals are everywhere in karting. BeaveRun in the photo is our home track in Pittsburgh but for every one road course there are four dirt ovals. The ratio may be even higher as you have to move to a 100 mile radius before you get past the one road course.

                              I raced many of the local ovals though in the few years I spent racing karts. All it took was one trip to BeaveRun to understand where my kids were going to race if they were going to race anywhere. Lump me firmly in the class of those parents that want to see my kids go fast and have fun but don't want to push that danger line. Road racing by and large is a safe version of racing. Nice big runoffs, tire barriers or hay bales and almost no immovable objects. Dirt oval racing is far more dangerous.

                              I can also say that it takes a lot more talent and kart control for a kid to run up front on dirt. On pavement there is a rhythym that the good drivers develop and they obviously can push the limits more than the less experienced drivers. But no one is going to win on a road course without the big horsepower and the fresh tires and the kart dialed in to perfection. On dirt though the talented kids can drive junk to the front on most days.

                              It isn't always the case obviously but from what I have seen dirt races are won on the track and road courses are won in the pits and the checking account.

                              Great to see an article like this in the WSJ. The sport needs all the exposure it can get to keep growing like it has the last few years.

                              If any parents have questions about getting in to karting with their kids, feel free to shoot me a note. This last year has been one of the greatest experiences I have ever had. I don't know that there is a better family sport where the family is the team. It is a great way to spend time with your kids and develop a relationship where you have to be able to trust each other, talk to each other and treat each other with respect. Things that are going to be important with those teen years fast approaching.
                              Dan Schlosser
                              Go fast, turn left !
                              www.tracksideonline.com

                              "Count all your blessings, just don't keep score...."
                              Mark "Hoot" Marchetti

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