karting cost vs dirt car cost???

jllee05

New member
Just curious if anyone out there had any input into the cost of running a competitive karting program compared to running a competitive street stock or hobby class dirt car??

Thinking about my racing future, and curious about this avenue.
Been in karting for years, and have a good handle on it, but wondering if I'd enjoy or afford moving up to big cars.

Thanks for your input!
 
I have been sucessful in both karting and streetstocks both on dirt. In one season I spent about $30,000 in my streetstock. I have 2 karts 4 motors new trailer and have around $15,000 in all my kart stuff. We actually run more big money races then the street stocks do. I do miss being able to slide sideways and hp around someone with the streetstock. Don't see that too much in karting
 
You can go do big money races with the karts, if you want big money in cars, you gotta be in a late model division of some type. Street stock and hobby stock classes are not what they used to be, you better have good money in a race motor to be competitive.
 
We were in pro stock circle track. The cost was ridiculous!!!!!! The cheating was rediculous!!!! The rough driving was rediculous!!! Did I mention the cost? lol We did our own stuff and there were still times we couldn't go because we didn't have the money to repair the car because of the previous weeks demo.
 
He's in NC..

If you are running Carolina,, Lancaster,, Thunder Valley,, Harris,, Cherokee,, I77 then the cheapest V8 class car is approx 15k
Approx $300-$500 to win ,, approx $20 11th - 15th

And then theirs East Lincoln,,, 5k - 8K car and lucky to win $300... 11tth - 15th,, maybe a hot dog and free pass for next week..

Good thing about race cars in our area is the admission is #20 and cost zero to enter..

Regular Kart Tracks in our area.... Woodleaf,, Millbridge,, Cody's Pride,, Hwy 120,, Liberty,, Coleridge,, Hwy 127,, Hanging Rock...
Possible to win $200-$300 per class on a good night.... $10 to get in and approx $25 in total entry (Entry,,EMT,,Points fund)

All this above maynot be exact BUT its Darn Close..

Yeah boys we are BLESSED with both Kart and Car Tracks... All Tracks mentioned are rought within 1 to 1.5 hours of charlotte
 
Last edited:
Around here the 1st place payout in the street stock type classes is about $150 unless some organization sweetens the pot. There are teams being reasonably competetive with home garage engine programs, but you'd be surprised how many teams out there don't want to leave anything to chance - there are more $12,000 engines in one local varient, the Thunder Cars, than you would believe. I mentioned that to my local tire dealer, as they ran the thunder car class, and his replay was, "Tell me about it; we're one of them." Last year they moved up to a limited late model (358 cube limit), since it wasn't going to cost much more and the prize money is better.

The bottom line in the few areas of the country where I'm familiar with street stock classes, you can do a whole lot of kart racing, and if you pick some money races during the season, you stand the chance of winning more money. Nobody make money in a street stock with a $12,000 engine.

We had a lot of fun racing a 600 micro sprint on a budget of about $6000 a year, but not every area of the country has micros sprints. We're blessed around here - no matter what size sprint car it is, there are multiple tracks within a 25 minute to 2 hour drive running them.
 
I do miss being able to slide sideways and hp around someone with the streetstock. Don't see that too much in karting Reply

whatch the outlaw karts race :)
 
i had almost $11K in my motors (2 of them) and the car itself (modified mini-stock). we were competitive (top five), but i didn't have near enough money in mine that some had in thiers....karts? a lot cheaper and a lot more fun!!! i ain't in it for the money.....its the thrill and the excitement that i love...
 
If you're into to racing to make money, best quit now, before you get disillusioned and bitter. There can be only one winner, and they take most of the spoils. However, if you embrace the enjoyment of high speed driving, comraderie, thrill of competition, etc., and don't have to win at all costs, affordable car/kart fun can be had. Best to decide what you want to get out of it before you get in...
 
Thanks for all the replays! It seems the location had a part to play in it.
The work and attention to detail I put into my karts, I'm sure would roll over to big cars, but it seems I'd be limited in the budget side if things.
Makes karts seem like a better avenue to continue to persue.
 
karts are just all around easier . you cant unbolt and lift a big car engine out of engine compartment by yourself , with bare hand and muscle . and you cant store a big car in your garage standing up on the back bummper to make room for the wifes car .
 
I've races almost everything in my life and karts are by far the cheapest racing out there. I've race motorcycle ...drag race..boat racing and still so....dirt cars and still do a little.....drag race motorcycles......street race...... Been racing karts for 30 years........
 
I have ran both karts and ump dirt modified and to be honest their isn't much different in the money you spend if you are chasing the kart money races do to the tires you need to have. But both karts/cars are both costly from the get go if you buy all new stuff from scratch. But karts will be cheaper at first then the cars will take over and it's due to once again the tires. Here is a break down of a few things

Kart chassis new depending on which brand is between $2,500 to $3,500
Modified chassis new $3,000

A good kart engine program (clone $900 to $1,100 need at least 3)(flathead $1,600 to $1,800 need at least 3)
A good modified engine program ($14,00 to $21,000 this is for a new engine)($4,000 to $8,000 for a spare used engine)
Unless you have engine problems one engine will last all season (freshen up cost about $1,000 a year)

A good tire program for kart depends on how serious you race ($5,000 minimum to god only knows how high some guys pay per year)
A good modified tire program is about ($5,000) about every week or two weeks replace the right rear then other than that as needed or if a tire gets cut down on the other 3 tires

Kart gate fee at most tracks ($10,00 per person)kart entry fee range from ($25,00 to $100,00 depending on purse and how many classes you run) tracks usually only payback top 5 spots also

Most big car tracks pit pass is ($25,00 per person on regular night $50,00 per person on big money races and this also is the driver entry fee) then they usually start 20 to 25 cars in the feature and if you make feature and make at least one lap under green you get back ($100,00 from 11th spot to 25th spot) and if you run a consi and don't make it into the A main you get ($50,00 tow money they call it)

Their is more but this is a few of the biggest things but like I said early this is if a kart racer chases the big money races and the big price different is in the tire program.

Also on the big cars you are putting in at least 5 to 6 hours or more a day on maintenance and up keep and this is after your actual work day at ur regular job and yes karts is in the tire game

This is just my 2 cents on it
 
Just curious if anyone out there had any input into the cost of running a competitive karting program compared to running a competitive street stock or hobby class dirt car??

Thinking about my racing future, and curious about this avenue.
Been in karting for years, and have a good handle on it, but wondering if I'd enjoy or afford moving up to big cars.

Thanks for your input!

There is no such thing as racing competitively. You either race to win or you race to loose, there's no competitive anything about it.

There are multiple times over millionaires, racing cars because that's what they choose to race. And there are multiple times over millionaires, racing karts because that's what they choose to race. They throw there nickel in to win, not to be competitive.

If your asking what's the best thing to put on a track to get closest to braking even, assuming you can do everything yourself, IMHO it's a Sprint Car.
 
at the average racers level, we all race and have fun. no one, regardless of type or vehicle races to lose, but to say that there is no competitive anything is a misnomer. competitiveness is what we all strive for. competitiveness is comes into play when you are racing against others on equal terms (rules) and there is no definitive edge from one kart to the other. yes, i live in a fairytale world where i like to think the best of everyone. but we are all competitive in nature or we wouldn't be sitting down in a half inch off the ground, self-propelled, pucker factorin, heart in your throat, sweat in your eyes, mud slingin, butt jarrin, fuel suckin, skin burnin, evil tempered monster every saturday night.....we do it all in the name of competitiveness....win, lose or dq....we will be there every saturday night dreamin of beating little billy snotnose for $20 and a cheap plastic trophy....and that is competitiveness......
 
I know all about competitiveness, I live in Charlotte NC(pretty much everyone here races something), and work for a cup team.
My main concern is dollar for dollar,..... which is cheaper, to run up front?
I completely understand that any one individual can spent "$xxx,xxx.xx" if they wanted to.
I just wouldn't want to turn my usually top 5 karting program into a back marker dirt car.

Thanks for all the opinions!
 
Back
Top