Note: The following is a highly generalized list of items for racers. Many people may already have some hand or power tools. Karting has many brands and factors associated with it that change over time. As a newcomer to the sport, we strongly urge you to take the time to consider multiple perspectives, brands, and budget options when getting involved.
At CKT, we want karters to get involved at a cost point that makes sense to them, while still allowing them to be safe on the racetrack, and have fun. The best way is to start conservative. This likely means taking the time to find a quality, used kart and proper safety and mechanical equipment so that you can go to the track and enjoy learning and progressing in karting from day 1. With so many kids progressing through various karting classes, used karts and equipment tends to be highly sought after in these classes especially, and therefore often retains value fairly well.
For most kart racers, the following are required to begin to compete with The Colorado Karting Tour:
- A High-Performance Go Kart
- Proper Safety Equipment
- Adequate Hand or Power Tools for Maintenance
- Transportation and Storage
- An Understanding of Sporting Etiquette and the Rulebook
- A Positive Attitude
Ballpark Investment for a racing go-kart
- A good used Kid Kart (5-7 yr olds) can vary from $800-$1500 as a race ready package. A brand new kart can cost approximately $2500 in complete ready to race condition.
- Junior 1-level karts (ages 7-13) typically are slightly more, with a mid range race ready package costing approximately $1200-$2000. New ones cost approximately $3,000-$3,500.
- Junior 2- level (ages 12-16) and Senior (16+) karts can vary in price. Typically, a used chassis (without engine) will cost between $800-$2000, and this can often include an engine package or other equipment. Due to the variety of engine packages available, we have separated the engine package cost from that of the karting chassis. Most karting engines can be found for $500-3,000, depending on displacement, model, performance, and pedigree.
Required Safety Equipment, and costs:
Mandatory for all competitors, regardless of age:
NOTE: All Safety Requirements and certifications that CKT utilizes as a regional representative of The International Karting Federation can be found at this link!
- A modern, Snell SA 2015 approved full-face helmet. There are a variety of models, sizes, and budgetary options available for karting helmets. Many helmets that people choose to start with range in price from $200–$600.00. Of all equipment listed on this page, CKT urges all members to invest the proper amount of research and funds in finding the best fitting and performing helmet that suits their budget. CKT follows The International Karting Federation’s technical and homologation requirements for all karting helmets. For further questions or suggestions on current vendors to contact to sample and try on a variety of helmets, contact us via email.
- A Racing Suit (karting specific as they are abrasion resistant). Like helmets, the sizing, brands, and features available vary greatly. Typical retail prices between $125-500.00 for most suits. Just like helmets, CKT follows all requirements regarding current homologation and certifications for suits.
- Over the Ankle Racing Shoes (Ideally racing-specific shoes), range $50-300.00
- “Full-Coverage” Racing Gloves, range $30-150.00
Additionally, racers under age 14 must have (we also strongly urge all racers to have these as well):
- An SFI Foundation approved Chest and Rib Protector. As with helmets and suits, there are a variety of brands. Typically, cost range $50-200.00.
- A neck brace/protection system. These devices do not have a sweeping standardized system in place for homologation. However, per IKF rules, all drivers under age 15 must utilize a neck protection device of some sort. This includes the Leatt Brace, Armadillo 360 Device, and EVS brace. For more detailed information, contact us via email.
Safety equipment is never, ever, ever a place to cut costs. While you don’t have to buy the most expensive safety equipment, you must consider it your own responsibility to invest in tested and certified safety gear.
Additional Equipment To Have In Your Pit Area
All performance karts require routine maintenance and service at and away from the race track. The following will help your kart perform at its best, and keep you on track on race days or practice days.
Note: For most items listed here, The Colorado Karting Tour will not enforce a specific ruleset or certifications. However, these are common items found in the pits of almost every single kart racer at the track.
All Karters Must Have the following in their pit area at all times:
- A working Fire Extinguisher that is within code. A simple ABC type is fine. Ranges $20.00 -100.00.
CKT Recommends that Karters Have:
- A comprehensive set of hand tools, ideally some power tools: While there are many items to list here, some of the main ones most kart racers will find useful: A set of metric wrenches, sockets, and allen keys, Screwdrivers, a hammer or mallet, measuring tape, safety wire and pliers. The prices of this can range from as low as $200.00 for starting tools to thousands if you have the nicest tools of all shape variety and color. Consider this an evolving and ‘as needed’ sort of category! Common power tools include drills, and impact guns.
- A Fuel Jug or Container: Most are plastic, and come in a variety of sizes. A common size is the 5-gallon variety. Ranges $30-75.00
- A Kart Stand: While there are those that do not have one, most kart racers utilize a kart stand to transport and work on their karts within the pits. They elevate the kart off the ground, allowing access to all areas of the kart at an ideal working height. Ranges from $150.00-300.00.
- A form of shade or sun protection: A small EZ-Up or portable tent is always nice to have at the track, and found in most pit areas. Many basic tents begin at $100.00, but fancier ones can cost considerably more.
- An Air Pressure Gauge, ideally also an Air Tank or even Compressor: Almost all teams will have an air pressure gauge.To start, don’t worry about having a fancy electronic one. A simple one will do just fine! In addition, having compressed air in your pits is nice for filling tires and for cleaning parts. Range $5.00- $150.00
- A small first-aid kit: While not mandatory (CKT always has a paramedic or attendants on site at any official event), small cuts can happen while working in the pits. Having some basic bandages is always good.
For many racers, the initial investment to purchase a kart and the basic equipment needed to go racing is the most demanding hurdle. Below are some common costs racers may incur depending on the class, type of engine, and general maintenance requirements of their kart.
- Tire costs: Depending on the racing class, it is common to regularly change tires for maximum performance. This expense will vary depending on the tire compound utilized in a certain class, as well as an individual’s competitive ambition and amount of time spent practicing. A typical set of karting tires will cost $150-200.00 a set.
- Fuel: For most karting classes, racing fuel is utilized for competition. The exact octane rating and type is dictated by class in more detail on our 2018 Racing Classes page. In addition, pre-mix oil additives for 2-cycle engines are commonly replaced, as well as common oil changes for 4-cycle engines. As there are many different varieties of fuel and fuel-oil additives that are either mandated or appropriate depending on the class you choose to compete in, the pricing will vary significantly.
- Lubricants and Cleaners: Setting aside fuel-additives and oil changes, common lubricants found in most karting pit areas include bearing lubricants such as WD-40, as well as chain lubricants. Depending on your maintenance habits and use, these will deplete over time.
Transporting Your Kart
For most racers, the kart arrives at the race track via their own transportation methods. In many cases, kart racers have trailers specifically intended for use at the race track to support their kart racing, and to keep the karts safe and dry to and from the track. With that said, it is also common for people to use other vehicles to transport karts.
- A typical adult-sized kart is about 6′ in length, and 5′ in width when fully assembled. Naturally, a Kid Kart or Cadet kart is smaller than this when assembled. Coupled with their low profile (approximately 2.5-3′ tall at max), and most karts are fairly flexible in terms of how they may be transported to and from the track. The images above show a variety of options.
- With some minor disassembly (removing the plastic bodywork), a kart’s footprint shrinks noticeably: approximately 5′ in length, and 1,000-1,040mm wide (41″) in width, as the rear axle is almost always the widest point of any kart with bodywork and wheels removed.
Reach out to Us!!
For more info, consider contacting us via email: [email protected] We love to hear from potential new racers, and will do our best to work with you to find a practical budget and plan to get you on track!