Before we jump headfirst into club racing, Steven Taylor and I decided to get our feet wet with some competition karting practice days. The thought has always been that a good number of weekend practice track days would be helpful in:
- Getting used to driving our karts,
- Learning how to start troubleshooting mechanical problems, and learn what parts that we need that we don’t have.
- Some general team building before the racing starts.
We checked all of those boxes yesterday. After loading up our transport van with our karts and some used scrubbed tires, we traveled down to the PSGKA track in Spanaway WA on Sunday to meet with the rest of the Xccel Racing karting team. (You can see a lap of the PSGKA track via this link here in another post.)
Seeing this was the first time that we’ve run both karts, some mechanical troubles creeped up. I had some engine problems, broke a seat strut and a wheel stud, and Steven had some issues with his brakes and chain. However, part of the experience of karting is learning how to work on your own equipment trackside.
So we just dove in, and with the help of some friends, started to get things done to get back on track. We definitely have a lot to learn working on these machines.
It was so great to get back on the grid and have some battles with my teammates, and also make some new race friends. Someone was clocking our laptimes with a stopwatch, and with used tires we were right on the cusp of setting some competitive race laptimes for World Formula drivers in our class.
We have a lot to learn about how to tune these karts, and just about karting in general, but this was a great next step in our karting adventures. Steven and I were able to come up with a list of new parts and equipment that we need before our next time out, and got more confident troubleshooting some basic problems.
The next step is to have a maintenance day to refresh both our karts and the transport day, before we go out for next practice. We’re also working on designing sticker kits for our karts, so they look more snazzy when they hit the track!
Just being able to get back into racing again, makes this all worth it. We’re having a blast!