Superkart


Superkart

The word Superkart has traditionally been used to mean 250 cc engine karts, the fastest category in Kart racing racing on full size car circuits. 250 cc Superkarts often set faster lap times than much more expensive and technically advanced racing machines. [http://www.mediasuperkart.com/en/news-actualite-313-french-cup-superkart-a-magny-cours.html Magny Cours F1 - Superkarts fire the crowds imagination !!] - July 06, 2007] Some British and Australian classes also include 125 cc gearbox karts.

The most obvious difference between a Superkart and any other form of kart is that they have full aerodynamic bodykits and race on car circuits over 1,500 metres in length. The power unit can be specially designed kart engines or production motorcycle engines with either 5 or 6-speed sequential gearboxes. Owing to their high top speed and massive cornering ability, Superkarts aerodynamic bodywork includes a front fairing, larger sidepods, and a rear wing. They use either 5 or 6 inch diameter tires and wheels.Superkarts race on "long circuits" (e.g. Silverstone, Laguna Seca, Magny-Cours). In the UK they also race on "short circuits" [ [http://www.karting.co.uk/tstp/RaceResults.asp?RS=1252&RE=10001&RC=18092 Race results & reports for all gearbox classes - 8th July 2007 - Kimbolton] ] (e.g. Kimbolton), "short circuits" are under 1,500 metres in length.

Superkarts are raced worldwide. There is a CIK-FIA European Superkart Championship, for 250 cc karts only.

The word "Superkart" is registered to Cadwell Car & Kart Club for the UK. [ [http://www.superkart.org.uk/ British Superkart Association] ]

Performance

Though its 2-stroke 250cc engine is small and produces only 95 hp (67 kW), it has 360 hp/l and 0.19 hp/lb (450 hp/tonne), which is higher than a Chevrolet Corvette. As such, Superkarts can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in less than 3 seconds with a top speed of 155 mph (250 km/h) [ [http://www.parcferme.com/content/view/2663/2/ Superkart at Magny-Cours - 2007] ] . Their low weight and good downforce make for staggering cornering and braking abilities. A Superkart is capable of braking from 100 mph (160 km/h) to standstill in around 2 seconds, and taking corners at nearly 3 ""g"" (30 m/s²).

At some circuits, Superkarts are the outright lap-record holders, at others they run at around Formula 3 lap times.

British Superkart Divisions :

*Division 1 is open to 250 cc karts with one or two cylinders and five or six speed gearboxes. Typically the karts produce 90 hp and are capable of 160 mph - the fastest form of kart. This formula was previously known as Formula E.

*Division 2 is for single cylinder karts with 5 and 6-speed boxes. Typically these karts produce 65 hp and are capable of 140 mph. However, being lighter than the twin cylinder (Division 1) karts they can be as quick on twisted circuits. This formula was previously known as 250 International. However the main British series is for single cylinder 250 cc karts with 5-speed only, also known as 250 National.

*125 Open - Powered by 125 cc engines and again featuring 6-speed sequential gearboxes, this class uses lighter chassis than the 250's.

Australian Superkart Classes :

*250 cc International - commonly referred to as 250 twins, these Superkarts are powered by twin cylinder Grand Prix motorcycle engines and usually have 6-speed sequential gearboxes.

*250 cc National - The single cylinder cousin of 250 twins, the National Class Superkarts are powered by 250 cc MotoX (motocross) engines and also feature 6-speed sequential gearboxes.

*125 cc Gearbox - Powered by 125 cc Grand Prix motorcycle engines and again featuring 6 speed sequential gearboxes, this class uses smaller and lighter chassis than the 250's.

United States Superkart Classes [ [http://www.theussk.com/ United States SuperKarts - USSK] ] :

*250 cc Formula/E or F/E - Twin cylinder, 6-speed, liquid cooled Grand Prix motorcycle engines such as the Honda RS250, Yamaha TZ250 or made for karting engines such as the BRC250.

*250 cc Inter-Continental E or IC/E - Single cylinder, 5 or 6-speed, liquid cooled Grand Prix motorcycle engines.

pectacle

Being inexpensive, Superkarts are very popular, and entries of 60 or more are common, (in Britain at the moment, anyway). Fortunately, most circuits allow for a large number of karts on the grids at once, and the sight of 60 karts arriving at the first corner at the same time is a real spectacle. The overtaking tends to be easy, as, like motorbikes, there is room to get past, so the races tend to be full of action. Race lengths tend to be around 20-25 miles (30-40 km), because the fuel tanks are quite small, so at most meetings which feature Superkarts, the karts race is often a brief, spectacular highlight (U.S. Superkart races are a timed 30-minute race; Pre-Final on Saturday, Final on Sunday).

A global category, Superkarts are endorsed by the FIA, and were featured as a support category to the French Formula 1 Grand Prix at Magny-Cours in 2007 where they bettered Porsche Supercup lap times.

A greener racing alternative?

Because of their small engines and compact size, karts and Superkarts have a much smaller environmental footprint than most other categories of four-wheeled motorsport. A Superkart is faster, cheaper and uses less fuel, tyres, oil etc. than many four-wheel motor sport categories. Using Australia’s most popular category, the V8 Supercars, as an example, clearly demonstrates this.

Notes

ee also

* Australian Superkart Championship
* Environmentalism in motorsport
* Kart circuits
* KF1
* KF2
* KF3
* KZ1
* KZ2

External links

*
* [http://www.cikfia.com CIK-FIA - International Karting Governing Body]
* [http://www.cikfia.com/web/karting/webkarting.nsf/results?openview&Collapse=all 1990 - 2007 CIK Results]


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