Are Predators killing the clone?

"J'-remy

Member
Around East Tennessee Kart counts in clone are going down down down and predator OTB class is taking over with the highest amount of karts. Over the past several race weekends there have been no 375 clones at all NONE. Only money races or the points races do we see them. was curious if this trend is happening elsewhere. Thanks in advance
 
How many remember the same question about the animal replacing the flathead, Some remember when the tiller engines replaced the Mini Macs. and then the clone replacing the animal. It is just another attempt to lower the price of karting. Will it last? (lower cost) NO. it The predator will run the same course. OTB will get abused. the same ones will modify the engine slightly, and then some body will write rules for them. At that time you can kiss your cheap engine good bye! It will be billet parts, and blueprinted.
But the saivor will be another cheap generator engine built in China that is 250cc and cheaper than the predator. And then ((((((((( Little Johnny's father will buy him one )))))))
And the process repeats!
Hey Dyno Don Little Johnny still lives!!!
 

"J'-remy

Member
My Lo206 is a good 5 years old. I only changed Valves and springs once and still runs up front.
I'm interested but no reason to buy one and be the only one. I bought 2 clones over the winter and feel there is nobody to race. curious if this is the situation elsewhere.
 

Racer53

Member
Im in Wisconsin. And the track I go to have had up to 20 Lo206 in the Sportsmen class. I havent seen a clone in a long time here.
 

spincycle

Site Supporter
$300 or so for a predator or upwards of $1200 for a clone, same stupidity when the clone first came into karting, flatheads were pushing $1500 and the clone started out at about $200-$300..
. trust me, give it some time, clones will disappear, predators will steadily creep in price, then a new cheap motor will suddenly appear on the market....🙄
 

mike97760

Site Supporter
We don't see OTB clones around here at all. Its AKRA clones and box stock Predators and the clone count is pretty good still. Predators do have the biggest kart counts at most tracks.
There are times in kart racing when the cost of entry level racing is too high for newbies to venture into. The Predator has opened that door (again) and the numbers do not lie. Hopefully some folks will like it enough to stick with it and move to other classes instead of messing up the rules so they can go faster like happened to the clone.
 

F1F21

Member
Out here in CA the ‘clone’ is a predator. There’s no true clones out here at least in my area of central CA. But only the predator is readily available now a days here. So if you were to google the ‘nor cal clone rules’ it’s based off the predator.
 

DynoDon

Moderator
How many remember the same question about the animal replacing the flathead, Some remember when the tiller engines replaced the Mini Macs. and then the clone replacing the animal. It is just another attempt to lower the price of karting. Will it last? (lower cost) NO. it The predator will run the same course. OTB will get abused. the same ones will modify the engine slightly, and then some body will write rules for them. At that time you can kiss your cheap engine good bye! It will be billet parts, and blueprinted.
But the saivor will be another cheap generator engine built in China that is 250cc and cheaper than the predator. And then ((((((((( Little Johnny's father will buy him one )))))))
And the process repeats!
Hey Dyno Don Little Johnny still lives!!!
That he does.
 

meracer9

Site Supporter
We’ve already made it known that in 2022 we are cutting way back on Predator classes locally and going back NKA Clone for 3-5 classes. Surprisingly we’ve had a lot of our racers and parents praise us for our decision as a club. After three seasons the Predators have been nothing more than a complete headache no matter how you look at it!
 

DynoDon

Moderator
Here in central Pa the predator nearly wiped out the clone in 340 and 375. Over the last 2 years those classes are coming back. I have been asked to design a set of rules for the predator but refuse to simply because it makes no sense when we already have a rules set for a full race engine. Building a rules set for the predator will just put the cost for it up where the clone is now. I know there are $500 to $700 predators (out of box) floating around here in Pa. If I were to build a rules set the cost of shipping to and from builder, full blueprint, would put that class on the back burner for many many new racers due to the cost alone. I am designing a video comparing the hemi vrs non hemi in relationship to each other so if one is suspected to be altered the tech can make a decision as to the engine being altered. Only reason for it is so many tracks are allowing alterations that require other alterations to make the first alteration work better. The head being one of them and rocker arms the other.
 
Comparing a Predator @ $150 to an L206 @ $1000 isn't quite apples to apples now, is it? I'll agree that the L206 is considerably more expensive @ $550 out of the box than a Predator from Harbor Freight. But for $1000 you're getting a race-ready, dyno tuned, L206 with ALL the bolt-on components. There are builders offering built Predators for $650 currently, and that's without all the bolt-on stuff.
I can't speak for every other shop out there, but our L206 pricing has gone up around $200 in 10 years....that's not bad at all in my opinion. A good rule set from the inception of the program helped curb costs, upgrades, updates, etc.
Our rebuilds are $100 + parts. Generally that runs $50 in parts and consumables, so you're @ $150 for a complete rebuild. That's not too bad for a race engine. If you want it dyno tuned, we charge $100 (incl. fuel & oil) for any brand of engine we tune.
As far as popularity of the L206, they have totally revived 4 cycle karting in the sprint world. We have a lot of dirt oval tracks in the midwest that have embraced it as well, but it's been tough to get it established in the south & east for obvious reasons.
The L206 has also changed the scene in parallel forms of racing such as 1/4 midgets, winged outlaw karts, & mini-wedge cars.
It's really not a bad engine program at all - 10 year old engines that are still legal and competitive today.

-----
🏁Thanks and God bless,
Brian Carlson
Carlson Racing Engines
Vector Cutz
www.CarlsonMotorsports.com
Carlson Motorsports on Facebook
32 years of service to the karting industry ~ 1Cor 9:24
Linden, IN
765-339-4407
bcarlson@CarlsonMotorsports.com
 
I will definitely say that the majority of Predator racers are coming from the clone classes though. There really were few racers running other engines as it was. It's definitely putting a hurt on the clone car counts from what I've seen.
 

jaymancds

Site Supporter
Locally predator became who paid the most. Last year it was good, then this year a bunch of clone guys stepped down and cheated up their predators. The track did nothing, and has done nothing to stop it. Many of the predator guys have gone to clones just because it is a teched class. I didn't have the bank roll to run clone, and I wasn't going to cheat up my predator. That was part of my decision to take a step back for a season or two.
 
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