Tire Game are you sick of it ?

Rickey

Member
Sad to see young families get into Kart Racing only to find out that they have to spend a small fortune on tires and prep. Kids and adult racers want to run good not last. Family budgets don't have that kind of money. Do you folks want to save Karting and grow the sport ? It's so simple to fix this a kid can figure it out. Racing bodies and promoters put rules in place that state NO tire prep of any kind No cutting of tires. Keep open tire rule in place so you can still run any brand or compound. Racers that cheat are band for 5 races and lose their tires. 2nd offence racer is band for the season. 1st. 2nd. and 3rd. place finishers must have tires tested and removed from the rims. If finishers refuse Tech they are band for 2 race seasons. It's called tough love. Racers will get the Message loud and clear. Simple isn't it. Should of happen 15 years ago.
 

kartracer_3

Member
While I agree on doing away with prep good luck enforcing it at a local Saturday night track level. Most promoters around here will not even discuss sending off fuel samples either because they do not have the resources or the time to do so, good luck on having them send off tires to be analyzed. Even if you send off tires to be analyzed how are you going to prove that a racer used prep if the tire tests positive for prep ? They could just say well I must have picked it up out there on the track and maybe someone else was using prep.
How do you plan on enforcing the no tire cutting rule ?
While I agree on the open tire rule IMHO we would be better off having everyone run treaded tires and do away with the slicks.
Again I do agree that the tire game is killing karting. A lot of people wonder why you see so many good karts for sale all the time . Well its because someone went out and bought everything you need to go karting with then realized you need a trailer full of tires to be competitive .
I really miss the old days when you could run one or two sets all season long and still win but I really don't think there is a good way to get back there. After watching a video of some clone classes run on treads I think it might be the answer but then we will have to hear it from the track prep guys, our local track will not even let anyone run treads , not even the open class.
 

XXX#40

Well-known member
Sad to see young families get into Kart Racing only to find out that they have to spend a small fortune on tires and prep. Kids and adult racers want to run good not last. Family budgets don't have that kind of money. Do you folks want to save Karting and grow the sport ? It's so simple to fix this a kid can figure it out. Racing bodies and promoters put rules in place that state NO tire prep of any kind No cutting of tires. Keep open tire rule in place so you can still run any brand or compound. Racers that cheat are band for 5 races and lose their tires. 2nd offence racer is band for the season. 1st. 2nd. and 3rd. place finishers must have tires tested and removed from the rims. If finishers refuse Tech they are band for 2 race seasons. It's called tough love. Racers will get the Message loud and clear. Simple isn't it. Should of happen 15 years ago.
Well if it isnt in the budget, that just means you shouldnt be racing.
 

SoCo Tire Treatments

Well-known member
Sad to see young families get into Kart Racing only to find out that they have to spend a small fortune on tires and prep. Kids and adult racers want to run good not last. Family budgets don't have that kind of money. Do you folks want to save Karting and grow the sport ? It's so simple to fix this a kid can figure it out. Racing bodies and promoters put rules in place that state NO tire prep of any kind No cutting of tires. Keep open tire rule in place so you can still run any brand or compound. Racers that cheat are band for 5 races and lose their tires. 2nd offence racer is band for the season. 1st. 2nd. and 3rd. place finishers must have tires tested and removed from the rims. If finishers refuse Tech they are band for 2 race seasons. It's called tough love. Racers will get the Message loud and clear. Simple isn't it. Should of happen 15 years ago.
Tire prep has been around since the 70s if not before then. So tell me once again how prep is hurting, when the heyday of the sport came years later? Cost of prep per year is cheaper than the cost of motors, tires, kart, but its the preps fault that cost is high?
Its posts like this that is really hurting this sport. People see posts like this, very negative towards karting, here, social media, and believes karting is a joke. How about posting positives about this sport INSTEAD of the negatives and watch it grow.
Prep adds longevity to the tire, and without prep you would have to buy new tires more often, that isnt cheaper.
New folks come into this sport and think they have to go race against the very best from the start, they lose and blame it on money, then frustration sets in and no longer in the sport. Instead of this, race within your budget and have fun!!! You ARENT getting beat by money but yet you are getting beat by KNOWLEDGE. Everyone thinks theyre entitled to be winning, that isnt the case with racing. Learn whats needed to win, thats what makes racing so satisfying when you do win.
WKA isnt what it was because they tried to ban prep, the majority dont believe in this and they showed that.
One last thing.....the ones winning now will be winning no matter, its not prep, its because they are good at driving!!
 

CarlsonMotorsports

Premium User
OP, I understand your lament...

However, enforcing a no-prep, no cut tires rule is simply not possible at the local level.
The cost (financial and manpower) to do what you have proposed would supersede the cost to all racers running cut and prepped tires.
Positively identifying a tire that's been cut, (not sanded, not ground on, not run in a parking lot - would you deem that legal? We did that before a tire lathe was ever used in most shops) to make a conclusive call in tire tech would be a nightmare for any tech man.
Dismounting the tires?
Your propposal is for top 3 karts. Let's just say for sake of argument that you're going to only tech the right side tires - that's 6 tires per class X the number of classes. Let's say 15 classes at the local track (most are more,) that's 45 tires being dismounted (and presumably re-mounted since the racers themselves couldn't afford their own tire mounting tools. I don't know about you, but that's the better part of an 8 hour work day for me, and I've done this stuff for 30+ years.
Time spent at the track with 15+ classes is already a huge complaint from racers (especially parents.) "It's 2 am - do you know where your kids are?" Sure, they're up at the tech barn waiting to have their tires dismounted. And the quality of tools that this local tire tech guy at the track is going to use on your tires...hmmm, what happens when one of them gets a leak at the bead? How much is that going to cost, and who is responsible?
Sending the tires off for chemical analysis is expensive (and most times inconclusive.) Ask the big car sanctioning bodies.
No local kart track wants to go this route.

Promoters no longer "promote." Not all of them, but a lot of them.
Gone are the days of track sponsors, class sponsors, race sponsors (from outside of our industry.)
Today, everyone relies on those of us in the kart business to support the tracks (tire rules, engine rules, sponsorships, etc.)
Your entry fees make up the difference. $50 entry fee to run for $500 -- you do the math....then you've got promoters who say that you must meet a minimum number of karts to run for that money. That's called a guarantee to make money. (There's not many businesses that you can get involved with that you are guaranteed to make money and not have a chance of losing.) Now, before I get all the promoters upset with me (too late, I know) these guys are NOT doing it for the money -- they are not making money at the local level hand over fist like some want to believe. Most are barely able to keep their track in the black while working for free (along with a bunch of their family and friends) who volunteer their weekends all summer long for YOUR enjoyment. Oh sure, once in a while they hit a home-run with a good car count and make up the difference for the year, but if it were easy (and lucrative,) you'd see more tracks opening than closing!

Working tires all week to be competitive can be a real pain. I get that.
But don't think for a minute that if you changed the rules, that you'll all the sudden become competitive with the guys who are currently winning. They'll still be working on their karts all week long and still be the ones to beat at the track.

For some, racing is a competitive sport.
For others, it's simply a hobby.

Be content with whatever level you choose to participate in our sport.


-----
🏁Thanks and God bless,
Brian Carlson
Carlson Racing Engines
Vector Cutz
www.CarlsonMotorsports.com
Carlson Motorsports on Facebook
30 years of service to the karting industry
Linden, IN
765-339-4407
bcarlson@CarlsonMotorsports.com
 

Rickey

Member
This tire prepping and cutting deal would not be easy i agree. It has to start somewhere. We raced Karts for 6 years back in the late 90's to 2002. People were using all kind of chemicals on their tires. We won 2 Duffys and it wasn't because of tire prepping. We are just racing 5 or 6 times in 2019. We retired from Open dirt Modified racing 7 years ago. Son is 35 now and just wants to have fun and renew old friendships. We can afford to prep tires but are not going to purchase new rubber every race event as 2 or 3 teams i know of do. Karting has always went thru up and down cycles. We raced 2 cycle's, back in 2000-2001 at the IKF nationals you had 19-22 karts in the feature. Last couple years you get 6 or 7 karts in the Feature. I think tire prepping and cost of tires plays a big part in reduced numbers. This is just my opinion. It's not my intention to start a War just some concerns about cost containment. Interesting that a couple reply's are from tire prep manufacturers. We will prep our tires for the 5 or 6 races we will run. Heck we can get tire prep on our tires just from rolling around the race track. lol. Have Fun and stay Safe.
 

Rickey

Member
Get into Sprint racing.
I don't know of any sprint racing track that treating tires is allowed.
Son wanted to go Sprint Car Racing when he turned 18 now he's 35. We live 110 miles from Knoxville, Iowa. Didn't want to take out a 2nd. Mortgage on our Home and max out 5 or 6 credit cards. lol.
 

XXX#40

Well-known member
Son wanted to go Sprint Car Racing when he turned 18 now he's 35. We live 110 miles from Knoxville, Iowa. Didn't want to take out a 2nd. Mortgage on our Home and max out 5 or 6 credit cards. lol.
Jimbo is referring to left and right hand turn kart racing, not sprint cars
 

Rickey

Member
Short story. When Son started racing Karts at 12 yrs. old he still had a BMX bike. He wanted to change the handle bars but we couldn't get the plastic/rubber grips off. I went over to the work bench and grabbed a can of green top Liquid Wrench and sprayed some inside of grips and went back to working a the Kart. I happen to turn around and looked at the grips dripping on the ground. lol. Needless to say that become our new tire prep. It works great. Now the sad part you can buy the yellow top Liquid Wrench but you can't buy the green top anymore.
 

spincycle

Member
Problem is not tire prep, problem is way too many people in karting think wins are bought.... and there are too many that see this and get turned off from karting because of it....and also because they dont understand that winning actually takes alot of effort, hard work, long hours in the garage and long term dedication to the sport....society in general wants instant gratification and success with everything they, and the activities they have their kids in....karting abd any kind of racing is not one of them....just my less than perfect opinion...
 

Ted Hamilton

helmet painter and racer
Problem is not tire prep, problem is way too many people in karting think wins are bought.... and there are too many that see this and get turned off from karting because of it....
The people that think wins are bought ARE correct -- if you're not a big kart shop or independently wealthy or willing to max out your credit, you are not going to win (consistently) against all of the above. The above ARE spending outrageous amounts of money to win a KART race. Their large pocketbooks allow for easy (and quick) testing of variables and ready-to-swap spare parts if the track is calling for something else other than what you started with....

Sprint racing sure is a lot less hassle, but parts are more expensive, as are the series fees, so......you pays your moneys and you takes your chances.

/* rant off.
 
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spincycle

Member
close to where I live, there is a youth baseball field complex, on any given night and weekends during the summer, the place is absolutely packed, kids and their parents everywhere enjoying the game of baseball....sometimes I say to myself, why cant kart tracks look like that on the weekends? simple, the costs to a parent are fairly minimal to get their kid into baseball (at least until they get to the elite level leagues), and then I think how much it may cost for a parent to put even one kid into kart, talking about something new or fairly new with a good engine, proper safety equipment, a few necessary tools and a few spare parts/tires/etc. and the answer is pretty clear, there just aren't that many parents willing to make that commitment in the world we currently live in, when they can go down to the local ball park and have just as much of a good time putting their kid on a t-ball/baseball team for the summer, or to simply keep on buying them the latest video game to keep them occupied and out of their hair. the minds of karting really need to get their heads together and try to figure out how to offer some sort of very low cost, race ready kart package that even those parents with little to no mechanical talent wouldn't be scared to buy and put their kid(s) into. I wish I knew what that was, but simply I don't.....
 

Menace61

Member
Dirt
Well if it isnt in the budget, that just means you shouldnt be racing.
Low budget racers make up the majority of the entries in my part of the state. Making the sport more affordable to the average person would go a long long way to increase kart counts.
 

Colt sr

Member
To say you cant win on a budget is farfetched in my eyes. My race team doesn't have sponsors just my pockets. And as far as tires and preps go. Lets see here... I have nothing but older tires 2014 or older. Preps that we pick up from guys that really didnt care for them. With the right gearing and the correct stagger we are quite competitive. Winning a race isnt everything but its nice to win a race or 2 over the season. Which is basically what we do. I do agree that karting does need a entry level that is affordable for those who want to try it but if i remember correctly when flatheads were in their heyday clones came out that were affordable. Then newer parts that made them faster jacked their prices. Now you have predators a 100 dollar motor that now have faster parts to put in them which means to be competitive you need to have them built. Its the age old story of i want to go faster. Don't blame the tire or prep game for all of us that are adrenaline junkies. As long as you have the right setup, a good driver, and a descent set of tires you will not only be competitive but you may win a few races over the course of a season.
 

CarlsonMotorsports

Premium User
Get into Sprint racing.
I don't know of any sprint racing track that treating tires is allowed.

If they don't tech for it, then guys will do it.
Kind of like having 3 blind referees at the basketball game...If they don't call a foul, then the players will foul.
And with the heavy/hard/thick rubber spec tires most have to run, there is some serious advantage to cutting and prepping them.
Sprint racing has it's own pitfalls too.

The vast majority of kart racers in the US are on dirt each weekend.
In Europe, it's just about all pavement road courses.

To each their own. :)
 

Don K

Member
Prep has become a religion in karting. It has spread to micro 600's and car racing too. I felt a control of prep would be absolutely no prepping of any kind in the pits, no wrapped tires and an open tire rule. But only if you wanted some control of it. I think prep would be of less value if the tracks just junked up the racing surface some and got rid of beautifully groomed racing surface.

DK
 
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