THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO GETTING STARTED

Welcome to the wonderful world of karting!

If you’re visiting this page, we assume you have a lot of unanswered questions about getting involved in karting. Hopefully when you leave our site, you’ll have all the information you require to get racing.

Perhaps at this point you should distinguish between becoming an owner/driver or a hire kart racer.

Please note that the following are guidelines for owner/drivers. You can get more specific information from your local circuit or Motorsport Authority.

The South African Karting Regulations detailing specs for the various classes are available on this site.

Think of Karting as scaled down circuit racing, for as well as the vehicles being smaller the circuits are too; most karting is ‘short circuit’, although more powerful Superkarts (or Long Circuit Karts) do run on full-size race tracks.

The principle is the same as for circuit racing; karts go wheel-to-wheel and the winner is the first to reach the chequered flag, which falls after the designated number of laps is completed. Most Kart events comprise practice sessions, qualifying, heats and one or two ‘finals’.

The Championships are split into seven main categories:

Bambino
5 – 9 years
Micro MAX
7 – 11 years
Mini MAX
9 – 13 years
Junior MAX
12 – 15 years
Senior MAX
15+ years
DD2
15+ years
DD2 Masters
32+ years

The first step is to head to your nearest kart track, then once you are competitive and you feel ready for the next step, register for the South African Kart Championships by booking your race number, the most accessible and cost-effective way of competing for a national title there has ever been. The series is open to children and adults alike.

If you want to compete in karting, go to some meetings and chat with the competitors. Most of them will be happy to talk but choose your moment; the waiting (holding) area pre-qualifying or pre-race is not the best timing to ask questions.

Click Here to reserve your 2022 race number or contact your nearest kart club below:

Region Club Contact
Gauteng Rand Kart Club secretaryrkc@gmail.com
KwaZulu-Natal KZN Kart Club secretary@kznkartclub.co.za
Western Cape WPMC Karting wpmckarting@gmail.com
Gqeberha Algoa Kart Club clinton@ccmossplanthire.co.za
East London Border Kart Club geoff@stephen2racing.co.za

Karts are small, purpose-built racing machines with rigid frames and no suspension. There are different Karts for different classes, so you need to choose your class first. Most karts are broadly similar, with the main differences being the size, engine, tyres and whether or not it has a gearbox.

When buying your first kart, consider looking at used equipment through private sales on Facebook Marketplace or from an authorised kart shop. If you choose to go new from the outset you will find offers on brand new karts from the below authorised chassis dealers.

If you’re buying a new kart you can’t really go wrong, however you need a slightly larger budget. To give you an idea, a new Bambino Kart will cost you around R 41 580 and a new MAX kart will cost around R161 000, complete and ready to race. A new DD2 should cost around the R 173 000 mark. Used karts start at about half the new price for something decent. If you are not sure at this stage consider hire kart racing.

You will need a basic tool box:

  • Set spanners (an extra 10mm and 13mm are handy)
  • Screw drivers
  • Set allen keys
  • Set T-bars (not necessary but handy)
  • A spring puller
  • Spark Plug Socket (21mm)
  • Tape measure
  • Straight edge (metal ruler)

….and some accessories:

  • Kart trolley with wheels (see site sponsors shop)
  • 20l Fuel Container
  • Measuring beaker(see site sponsors shop)
  • Trailer or bakkie or store your kart at your local circuit

You’ll need CIK compliant safety items such as helmet, race suit, gloves and boots. You would also be wise to buy a rib protector, which isn’t mandatory but will save you from some post-race aches and pains.

Equipment Pricing Guideline:

  • A good quality crash helmet with visor (R 5095+) see example
  • A karting race suit/overall (R 2600+) see example
  • Boots which cover your ankles – Driving boots can be obtained from kart shops for around (R 1 100+), but boxing boots and basketball-style sneakers also work well. Look for something with a thin sole. see example
  • Gloves which cover your wrists (R 500+) see example
  • A 1.5kg dry powder fire extinguisher (You need this for scrutineering, attach it to your kart trolley)
  • Neck brace – Optional (R 1100+)
  • Rib-Protector – Optional – Compensates for badly fitting seats and bumpy tracks. (R 3195+) see example

You can probably get away with R 10 000 – R11 000 excluding helmet if you go for the budget options. Otherwise the sky is the limit.

Competitive racing can start as early as the 5th birthday in the Bambino class. Details of individual classes and age groups can be found below:

Regulations for most classes can be found on the 2022 Regulations section of this website while region specific regulations can be found under the respective Club sections.

Standard Karting Regulations, Sporting Regulations and Technical Regulations for each region can be found here.

Specific event or Championship regulations are found in Supplementary Regulations (SRs) made available on the event page by the organiser for each event.

Almost! …. you probably want to get in some practise first though. Before going out on a new circuit you should walk the circuit at least once when it is quiet (this goes for experienced drivers as well). Take someone who knows the track with you if possible. Look for places where the track is “forgiving” when you go off. More importantly, look for places that will break your kart if you make a mistake (high kerbs & drop offs eat sprockets, chains & brake discs!). Look for bumps & rough spots that may affect the handling or your braking distance. Mostly just get a feel for the lines and the track in general.

When you start off, don’t try to be fast …. it won’t work and you’ll most likely break something trying (If you’re lucky it’ll just be your kart!) – Rather try to be smooth. Visualise the track before you start and try to stick to the lines you “saw”. (You’ll modify these as you get a feel for the kart). If possible, follow someone who knows the track. This can be invaluable as 10 laps behind an experienced driver can be worth 100 on your own. Remember that you only have limited time (and money) to practise. Do whatever you can to make the most of your time.

COMPETE AGAINST THE BEST IN SOUTH AFRICA!

Enter the 2022 South African Kart Championships

Over 200 drivers have already signed up to compete in 2022. Are you one of them? Register below and let’s race together.

REGISTER HERE

THE CHAMPIONSHIPS EXPLAINED

About the Rotax South African Kart Championships

Some of the most famous names in South African Motorsport have Rotax Kart Championship titles on their CVs, including Michael Stephen, Jonathan Aberdein, Julian van der Watt, David Perel, Mark and Gavin Cronje and Bradley Liebenberg, to name but a few.

In 2022, the Rotax South African Kart Championships will race together again. Well organised club, regional and national race days countrywide, run by officials who love Kart Racing.

Managed by Karting SA, The Championships run to a single, simple, clear and comprehensive set of regulations. Backed by our supporting ASN, WOMZA, who share in our vision and initiative.

Over 200 drivers have already signed up to compete in 2022. Are you one of them? Register below and let’s race together.

2022 calendar

Enter the 2022 Championships

Get South African Karting Championship news to your inbox…

Join our mailing list

Over 200 competitors have registered to compete in this year’s revolutionary new South African Rotax MAX Kart Championships. Have you?