Getting started in the sport of Karting

About Karting

Karting is one of the most fun, exhilarating, cost effective and professionally run forms of motorsport in Australia.

It’s the perfect sport for families to come together at weekends and participate in an exciting, social, healthy and rewarding activity, and gives them the opportunity to become apart of a large friendly community of like minded people who share a similar passion for sport and motor racing.

Karting allows people of all backgrounds and age groups to participate in a sport that provides a thrilling and enjoyable sense of speed thanks to being so low and close to the ground and racing wheel to wheel with other drivers, which provides an adrenaline rush no other sport can provide.

In Victoria there are 17 Karting Victoria/Karting Australia affiliated kart clubs, with a race meeting happening almost every weekend at a kart club around the state.

The sport has racing events to cater for drivers of all age groups and experience levels from young drivers through to masters, from Club Days at your local Club to, regional Open Meetings and Series events to State Championship and National Championship level events.

If you enjoyed driving at your local indoor go-kart track and want to take it to the next level, the sport of Karting involving kart clubs affiliated with Karting Victoria / Karting Australia is the place you want to be to get started!

Improving and Educating The Driving Skills Of Tomorrows Road Users

Karting is a great educational tool for young people as it provides driving experiences that can help them become more competent, confident and responsible road users in all weather conditions.

It means that these drivers may have gained many years of driving experience well before they are old enough to qualify for a road licence.

Karting in general teaches drivers various aspects of car control in all weather conditions, concentration, focus and situational awareness, while also teaching them about the mechanical and engineering side of how motor vehicles and engines work and operate.

The sport also teaches the values of working together as a team or family, while learning about sportsmanship and fair play in a competitive environment.

Where The Driving Champions Of Tomorrow Are Born

The racing stars of tomorrow start in karting with most of todays Formula 1 grid including Australian’s Daniel Ricciardo and Oscar Piastri (from the Oakleigh Go-Kart Racing Club) beginning their racing careers in Karting, along with most drivers on the Australian Supercars grid including Jamie Whincup, Scott McLaughlin, Craig Lowndes, David Reynolds, Rick and Todd Kelly, Cameron Waters and Will Davison just to name a few, all regular competitors on Victorian kart tracks in the junior classes with many still current active Karting members and use Karting as valuable tool in their training programs today.

View the bottom of the page to see a table of some of the drivers that started karting and have gone onto become professional racing drivers in Australian Supercars and Formula racing categories.

A Sport Not Only For The Drivers

Karting is also not just limited to the drivers it involves a whole community of people working together in a variety of roles to make the sport possible.
At every kart race you will find people in positions such as officiating, stewarding, scrutineering, starters, time keeping, flag, scales, grid and pit marshals, commentating, grounds keeping and canteen operation just to name a few.

If you are interested in being apart of the sport, lending a hand and becoming apart of a great community of people, contact your local kart club or Karting Victoria we will be able to help you get involved.

Fully Regulated And Safety Focused Motorsport

With Karting being one of the most popular forms of motorsport in teh world, safety is of the upmost importance with the sport ensuring that it utilises the latest in safety technologies and procedures.

In recent years rear bumpers have become mandatory on all karts and the HANS device (head and neck support device) has become the standard for Cadet drivers.

There are strict rules and regulations in place to ensure the sport can be as safe as it can be. When a person applies for a karting licence they must successfully complete the “Safety Training Assessment”. Competitors also must use Australian Standard fire proof driving overalls, gloves, boots and helmets at all times.

On race day qualified stewards, officials and scrutineers oversee the race weekend to ensure the driving standards of competitors are to a fair standard and their karting machinery is in compliance with the rules and regulations of the sport. Qualified paramedic personnel are on hand at the track to attend to personal in the event of an accident. In the event of competitors breaking the rules penalties and suspensions may be handed down to competitors depending on the rule violation and may even require a tribunal hearing to decide outcomes in certain cases.

Attend A Race Meeting

A great way to get a feel for the sport of karting is to attend a race meeting at a Karting Victoria/Australia affiliated kart club in person and to have a talk to the members themselves or club officials who may be able to assist with any general enquiries.

Spectator entry to Karting events is almost always free with some clubs offering great views from grandstand seating to take in all of the action and generally run a canteen to provide refreshments or lunch along with full ammenities.

View the Victorian Karting Calendar to see when a race meeting is coming up in your area or contact your local club or Karting Victoria to further information about up coming race meeting dates.

Our kart clubs are open to you, your friends and family, we look forward to seeing you at our Kart clubs to enjoy the sport of Karting.

COIVD 19 – Please ensure you are update to date with all of the current regulations surrounding the COVID 19 pandemic and rules and regulations are constantly changing. It is always best to contact a club representative or Karting Victoria or Karting Australia if you plan on attending an event as a spectator.

See this website for the current advise surrounding COVID 19 related to Karting events https://www.karting.net.au/administration/covid-19-information

2. Steps To Start Karting In Victoria

2. Steps To Start Karting In Victoria

STEP 1 – Join A Karting Victoria/Karting Australia affiliated Kart Club
STEP 2 – Get a KA licence
STEP 3 – Buy a kart
STEP 4 – Buy your safety gear
STEP 5 – Practice and start racing

STEP 1 - Join A Kart Club

In Victoria there are 17 Karting Victoria/Karting Australia affiliated kart clubs.
Please visit their Karting Victoria club pages for contact details and links or visit the clubs official facebook page or website (if available) to find out more information regarding the club.

STEP 2 - Get a Karting Australia licence

Before buying a kart, engine or related equipment it is a good idea to understand what class or classes you are thinking about competing in and what licence level you may need to obtain in order to race in a particular class or meeting, series or championship.

Licences
– are divided into 4 different age group categories.

  1. Cadet 9 Licence from 6 to 9 years (maximum age is 10th birthday, must be 7 years old to compete)
  2. Cadet 12 Licence 9 years of age to 12 years of age
  3. Junior Licence 12 years of age to 15 years of age
  4. Senior Licence Minimum 15 years of age


To help distinguish the different licence levels when at the track Senior drivers use a black on yellow number plate, Junior drivers use a black on white number plate and Cadet 9 & 12 drivers use a red on white number plate.

*Note to be allowed to compete in Zonal Series or State Championship your licence grade must be a minimum of grade “D” for Zonal Series and grade of “C” for State Championship.

You can apply for a licence at the official Karting Australia website https://www.karting.net.au/how-to-get-started-in-karting/apply-for-licence

STEP 3 - Buy a kart

It is a good idea to have your local club or local kart shop help you with buying your first kart to ensure that it meets the standards and regulations for the class you are wishing to compete in.

The Karting Australia Getting Started page has guide for the cost for each class of Karting.

A link to the official Karting Australia rule book can be found at https://www.karting.net.au/administration/rules

Classes

The sport of karting has classes that caters for all ages, weight and experience levels. The classes below are run at the majority of most Karting Victoria race meetings. Series and State Championship classes are indicated below. 

Cadet 9 (6 – 9 years)
The purpose of this class is to teach young people to drive karts of restricted performance at a limited cost. Competitors use a Vortex 60cc Mini Rok fitted with a restrictor plate or Comer SW80 engine with a clutch. Drivers aged between 6 and 7 are only able to practice and must be 7 years of age before starting racing.
Approx. Power – 6hp

Cadet 12 (10 – 12 years)
Using the same principal of the Midgets class the Rookies use a Vortex 60cc Mini Rok or Yamaha KT100J engine fitted with a restrictor plate.
Approx. Power – 8hp

KA4 Junior (12 – 16 years)
KA4 Junior Light class – KA4 Junior Heavy class
With two weight divisions this class allows close competitive racing in karts with reliable engines (IAME KA100 Reedjet (fitted with a restrictor) or Yamaha KT100J) still fast enough to teach the basics of racecraft at a low cost.
Approx. Power – 11hp

KA3 Senior (15+ years)
KA3 Senior Light class – KA3 Senior Heavy class
Utilising the IAME KA100 Reedjet or Yamaha KT100S, this class offers relatively low cost, yet fast and competitive racing. The Clubman class, as with all ‘controlled’ classes, uses a single brand and compound tyre, with wet weather tyres also an option for inclement conditions.
Approx. Power – 16hp

TaG 125 Restricted (Touch And Go – Formula Rotax, IAME X30, PRD Galaxy etc) (15+ years)

TaG 125 Restricted Light class – TaG 125 Restricted Medium class – TaG 125 Restricted Heavy class

The TAG Restricted class caters for entry level competitors using push button or key start engines such as the Rotax MAX, X30 and PRD Galaxy engines fitted with a restricter plate. The engines used in these classes are watercooled and are fitted with a clutch and provide an easy step from beginner into the more powerful 125cc Open categories.

TaG 125 (Touch And Go – Formula Rotax, IAME X30, PRD Galaxy etc) (16+ years)

The TAG classes cater for push button or key start engines such as the Rotax MAX, IAME X30 and PRD Galaxy engines. The engines used in these classes are water-cooled and are fitted with a clutch.
Approx. Power – 24 – 28hp

Victorian Combined Masters (Karting Victoria class) (40+ years) 
This Division is in accordance with the TaG 125 Restricted Class Rules – Chapter 13 and KA3 Class Rules – Chapter 6 with the only amendment being the Minimum weights for the Masters Division which are as follows:
i) Rotax (EVO): 177kg
ii) All other engines: 172kg
iii) NOTE: The Minimum weight of a Kart fitted with a KA3 Engine may be adjusted throughout the year to achieve parity with the TaG 125 Restricted Engines.

Newly Introduced Classes

The following classes are new classes to the sport and may only be ran at particular race meetings or specific kart clubs depending on entry numbers or whether the class is specified for the meeting, while these new classes establish themselves.
It is always best to contact your club, racing series, event Supp Regs or local kart shop to check the status of these classes.

Cadet 4SS (new class for 2019)
https://www.karting.net.au/control-cadet-4ss-formula-launched

4SS Junior and Senior (Four Stroke Sprint – Torini Clubmaxx 210, Briggs & Stratton 206) (12+ years)
The 4SS class is new for 2018 designed specifically for the entry-level competitors.  The engines used in this class are low cost, low maintenance Torini and Briggs & Stratton four-strokes on Kats fit with a hard compound tyre.
Approx. Power – 9hp

Yamaha class
This Class is a combination of the Yamaha engines from KA4, KA3 and TaG 100
Junior division: Minimum Age: Year of 13th birthday, Maximum Age: Date of 16th birthday Senior division: Restricted by Licence Masters division: Minimum of 40 years old to Compete
All engines listed below are permitted in either the Junior Division or Senior Division
1) Yamaha KT100J, 2) Yamaha KT100SEC a. Must run with clutch and complete KT100SEC starter system, 3) Yamaha KT100SE, 4) Yamaha KT100SD.

See all of the details on each class in the Karting Australia manual at https://www.karting.net.au/administration/rules

STEP 4 - Buy Your Safety Gear

A racing helmet, suite, gloves, and driving boots with ankle protection and for Cadet drivers a Hans device that meets the rating standards shown in the Karting Australia manual are all also compulsory. It is important that you try on these items to get the correct size before you buy.

Your local karting club personnel or local kart dealer will be able to advise you on what equipment will be best for you.

STEP 5 - Practice & Start Racing

When a licence is first issued, the Driver must display a “P” plate in a location adjacent to their competition number at all times whilst they are on a Track. The “P” plate must resemble a “P” plate as used by the State or Territory civil roads authority. A “P” plate must continue to be used until such time as a Driver has qualified to be upgraded to the next level of licence.

See the “Licence Grading Process” and “Licence Criteria’s” for what you need to do to upgrade your licence in the Karting Australia Manual section “Competition Licences”.

Get Started In Karting Videos

The Karting Australia website has a list of Get Started In Karting videos explaining some of the fundamentals of karting, setup options, tools required and maintenance advice.
Please click on a link to view that video or visit the Karting Australia Get Started In Karting videos page below.

1 – Assessing a chassis
2 – Safety Equipment
3 – Tools Required
4 – Mixing Fuel
5 – Priming and starting the engine
6 – Lead Weights
7 – Chain and Sprocket Alignment
8 – Tyre Pressure
9 – Seat Position
10 – Throttle position
11 – Front Track Width
12 – Rear Track Width
13 – Rear Wheel Hubs
14 – Chassis Ride Height
15 – Wheel Alignment
16 – General Maintenance

See the full page at www.karting.net.au/how-to-get-started-in-karting/how-to-go-karting

You can get you and your family into the exciting sport of Karting today, if you have any enquiries about starting the sport please contact Karting Victoria via phone 1300 305 278 or email vka@bigpond.net.au

Office open hours are 10:00am to 5:00pm weekdays. More contact details are available on the Contact Us page.

Karting events aimed at people new to Karting

Come And Try Karting Experience Programmes

If you want to get behind the wheel yourself to get a taste of the sport Karting Australia currently has two programmes on offer, the Bring A Mate events and Junior Sprockets programmes.

Junior Sprockets Program
Is a participation initiative developed by Karting Australia that provides participants aged between 6 & 12 years of age with the opportunity to experience the thrill and excitement of driving an authentic racing kart in a safe and controlled environment.

More information on the Karting Australia Junior Sprockets program can be found here
https://www.karting.net.au/junior-sprockets

Bring A Mate Events
Bring a mate events are Karting Australia’s Junior and Senior Karting Experience Program.

Bring a Mate has been designed to allow people who are interested to try karting to get behind the wheel on one of Karting Australia’s 88 licensed tracks across the country in a real racing kart.

For more information on the Karting Australia Bring A Mate events or contact your local club or Karting Victoria to find out when there may be any Bring A Mate events coming up.

https://www.karting.net.au/bring-a-mate-program-launched
https://www.karting.net.au/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/BRING-A-MATE-PROGRAM.pdf

Racing Events And Competitions

Racing Events And Competitions
The sport provides competitions and series for all levels of racing from local, regional, and state through to national level competitions.
Whether it be a driver who wants to compete once a month at their local club, a beginner starting out in the sport or someone that wants to compete at the highest level, the sport of Karting has a competition that will cater for all levels.

Local
Club Day – Are club level events that can be held by each Victorian Kart Club usually on the last weekend of the month from January to November.

Starting in 2018 Karting Australia began a programme that is known as the Club Driver Rankings with points from every Club Day competed in going to an overall Club Day Championship prizes to help give an incentive for drivers to compete regularly at Club Days. You can see more about the Club Driver Rankings at http://www.clubdriverrankings.com.au

State Trophy Meetings (also known as Open Meetings)  – Are single race meeting events where entry is open to all other club members to compete.

 

Regional

Golden Power Series
Is a 6 round racing series run at clubs in the states Eastern-Central region with individual rounds being held at the Goulburn Valley, Bendigo, Albury-Wodonga, Gippsland, Rochester and Eastern Lions Kart Clubs throughout 2022.
See more details about this series at the Karting Victoria Golden Power Series page or official facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/GoldenPowerSeries

Victorian Country Series
Is a 6 round racing series run at clubs in the states South-West region with individual rounds being held at the Warrnambool, Portland, South West, Hamilton, Wimmera and Ballarat Kart Clubs throughout 2022.
See more details about this series at the Karting Victoria Victorian Country Series page, official VCS facebook page https://www.facebook.com/VictorianCountrySeries and official VCS website http://www.victoriancountryseries.com/

Vic Metro Series
This is a 3 round series in 2022 being held at the Eastern Lions, Oakleigh and Go-Kart Club of Victoria.

State

Victorian State Championship
In2022 the Victorian State Championship is being held at the Eastern Lions Kart Club over 3 days from the 12th to the 14th of April. State winners are recognised in karting with a blue number plate being awarded to the class winner which earns them the right to use that plate in that class for the next twelve months.

View one of the classes from the 2018 Victorian Kart Championship here, or view all of the classes from the championship on the Karting Victoria Youtube Channel

Victorian State Cup
State Cup champions are recognised in karting with a black number plate being awarded to the class winner which earns them the right to use that plate in that class for the next twelve months.

In 2022 the Victorian State Cup is being held at the Rochester Kart Club over 2 days from the 3rd and 4th of December.

National

Australian Kart Championship – Is the highest level of racing for the sport of Karting in Australia.

National champions are recognised in karting with a green number plate with gold number being awarded to the class winner which earns them the right to use that plate in that class for the next twelve months.

In recent years some of the classes winning champions have also earned the right to qualify for international meetings the ROK Cup International Final or IAME International Final.

See more details about this series at
https://www.karting.net.au/australian-kart-championship

Relive all the rounds of previous Australian Kart Championships at https://livestream.com/mysportlive

Junior specific race meetings

There are s race meetings specifically dedicated to cadet and junior drivers in 2022.

Junior Top Guns Round 1 and 2 at the Oakleigh Go-Kart Racing Club
Junior Sprint Classic at the Eastern Lions Kart Club

Special racing meetings

C & D Grade Titles
Is a race specifically only for C & D Grade licence holders and is run at the Gippsland Kart Club each year. The meeting provides a great opportunity for drivers at this licence rating to compete against others of a similar level.

Australasian Titles
Open to competitors from all clubs with the winner being recognised and awarded a red number plate which earns them the right to use that plate in that class for the next twelve months.

Historic Karting Victoria Vintage Grand Nationals
A race meeting run by Historic Karting Victoria that runs previous generations of karting equipment.

Find out more out Historic Karting Victoria and the Vintage Grand Nationals meeting at https://www.facebook.com/Historic-Karting-Victoria-102857983665091/

Common Karting terms for people new to the sport

Australian Karting Manual
The Australian Karting Manual is an essential reference tool for all Officials, Competitors and their support teams. We will continue to provide all karters with a printed copy of the Manual that will be updated annually. A dynamic version which, maintained as current, will have full regulatory value and effect will also be maintained on the Karting Australia site.

The Australian Karting Manual is the official rule book for karting in Australia. It is recommended that before starting the sport you spend some time on reading it to familiarising yourself with the official rules and regulations, and classes of the sport. Karting Australia releases updated versions of the manual throughout the year so be sure you are reading the latest version.

Online version of the manual can be accessed here https://www.karting.net.au/administration/rules

 

Supplementary Regulations
Also know as “Supp Regs” is the official document released related to the running of a specific event and is dowloaded by all competitors to find out the exact details of a race meeting. For race meetings in Victoria Supp Regs are made available on the kartingvic.net.au website.

Addendums
Both event Supplementary Regulations and the Karting Australia manual may be amended with changes throughout the year called “Addendums”. Addendums specifically overwrite what was written in previous releases.

State Regulations
A set of rules for Karting for a state. State Regulations may be applied to State, Zonal and Club Competition.

KA CM:S – How To Enter Race Meetings
KA CM:S is a name for the Karting Australia online entry system. You can enter race meetings and apply for licences via clicking the link KA Online Licence and Entries

Speedhive
Karting Australia uses the mylaps Speedhive timing system to log all results from its race meetings. You can visit the results for karting in Australia at https://speedhive.mylaps.com

Upgrading Your Licence

When starting out in karting a new Driver will start on the lowest licence grade of “E” for that particular category of licence. Cadet licence holders can reach the highest licence grade of “B”, while Junior and Seniors licence holders can reach the highest licence grade of “A”.

To upgrade from a licence grade of “E” to a licence of grade “D” a driver must successfully completed an “Observed Licence Test”.

To upgrade from a licence grade of “D” to a licence grade of “C” a driver must
a) Have held a D Grade Licence and meet upgrade conditions
b) Satisfactorily compete at four (4) Meetings with a D Grade licence
c) Must have Licence endorsed at the end of each Meeting
d) Must apply to State Secretary via Karting Australia CMS

To upgrade from a licence grade of “C” to a licence grade of “B” a driver must
a) Held C Grade Licence and meet upgrade conditions
b) Satisfactorily Compete at six (6) Meetings with a C Grade licence
c) Must have Licence endorsed at the end of each Meeting
d) Must apply to State Secretary via Karting Australia CMS

For Junior and Senior Licence holders only, to upgrade from a licence grade of “B” to a licence grade of “A” a driver must
a) Held B Grade Licence and meet upgrade conditions
b) Top 5 finish in a National Championship or National Series
c) Top 3 finish in a State Championship

6 year olds
Please note that 6 year olds are only allowed to practice at a club and are not allowed to compete in a meeting and cannot upgrade their licence fro grade “E” until they are 7 years of age.

To have a quick look at the Licence criteria scroll to the “Licence section” above, or see the full “Licence Grading Process” and “Licence Criteria’s” for what you need to do to upgrade your licence in the Karting Australia Manual section “Competition Licences” .

Formula One Drivers that started their careers in Karting

Victoria
Oscar Piastri (2021 FIA Formula 2 champion, 2020 FIA Formula 3 champion) from the Oakleigh Go-Kart Racing Club, VIC

Australia
Daniel Ricciardo – Tiger Kart Club, WA
Mark Webber – Canberra Kart Racing Club, NSW

International drivers – who started in Karting and went on to become Formula One World Champions
Lewis Hamilton, Hoddesdon Kart Club, England
Michael Schumacher, Kerpen Kart Club, Germany
Sebastian Vettle, Germany
Fernando Alonso, Spain
Jenson Button, England
Ayrton Senna, Interlagos Kart Club, Brazil
Alain Prost, France
Kimi Räikkönen, Finland
Mika Häkkinen, Finland

Oscar Piastri (2021 FIA F2 champion, 2020 FIA F3 champion) – Oakleigh Go-Kart Racing Club, VIC

Daniel Ricciardo – Tiger Kart Club, WA

Supercar drivers that started their racing careers Karting in Victoria

The majority of today’s professional racing car drivers in Supercars and Formula One first started their motorsport careers in Karting. Below are just a few of the drivers that have gone onto become professional racing drivers. 

Albury-Wodonga Kart Club
David Reynolds
Macauley Jones
Andrew Jones
Nathan Pretty

Eastern Lions Kart Club
Jamie Whincup
Craig Lowndes
Will Davison
Alex Davison
Cameron McConville

Geelong Kart Club
Anton DePasquale 

 

Go-Kart Club of Victoria
Paul Dumbrell
Steve Owen
Tim Blanchard
James Moffat
Tony D’Alberto
Jack Perkins

Gippsland Go-Kart Club
Jason Bright

Mildura Kart Racing Club
Cameron Waters
Rick Kelly
Todd Kelly

Oakleigh Go-Kart Racing Club
Greg Ritter
Steve Richards
Grant Denyer
Dale Wood

Interstate drivers
James Courtney (Combined Districts Kart Club)
Michael Caruso (Combined Districts Kart Club)
Scott Pye (Mt Gambier Karting Club)
Mark Winterbottom (Sydney Kart Racing Club)
Tim Slade (Southern Go-Kart Club)
Todd Hazelwood (Southern Go-Kart Club)
Nick Percat (Go-Kart Club of SA)
Lee Holdsworth (Ipswich Kart Club)
Garth Tander (Tiger Kart Club)
Jason Bright (Gippsland Go-Kart Club)
Jack LeBrocq (Berwick Go-Kart Club)

Overseas drivers
Scott McLaughlin (Kartsport Hamilton)
Fabian Coulthard (Kartsport Hamilton)
Simona de Silverstro (Swiss Karting Federation)

Stay up do date with Karting in Victoria

Once you have a kart licence and the Karting Australia rule book it is a good idea to stay up to date with your kart club, Karting Victoria and Karting Australia by visiting each bodies website or connecting with them via social media on channels like Facebook and Twitter. Any news, event supp regs, event promotions or manual updates will be posted to these websites.

Karting Victoria provides the following channels you can connect with:

Karting Victoria Website (updated with supp regs, addendums, meeting information, and any Karting Victoria related news)
www.kartingvic.net.au

Karting Victoria Facebook (updates from the Karting Victoria website)
www.facebook.com/kartingvic

Karting Victoria Twitter (updates from the Karting Victoria website)
www.twitter.com/kartingvic

Karting Victoria Instagram
www.instagram.com/kartingvic

Karting Victoria YouTube channel (featuring videos from prior Victorian Kart Championships)
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCffLcvUxbUj1CNpVJWqKftw

For Further Information

You can get you and your family into the exciting sport of Karting today, if you have any enquiries about starting the sport please contact Karting Victoria via phone 1300 305 278 or email vka@bigpond.net.au

Office open hours are 10:00am to 5:00pm weekdays. More contact details are available on the Contact Us page.

Karting Australia has further information on how to get into karting at this page here.
https://www.karting.net.au/how-to-get-started-in-karting

Get Started In Karting Videos
https://www.karting.net.au/how-to-get-started-in-karting/how-to-go-karting

Karting Australia Club Finder
https://www.karting.net.au/how-to-get-started-in-karting/club-finder