The Woodbridge Kart Club hosted a very successful American Kart Racing Association (AKRA) 2021 Road Race Series opener May 22-23 at their longtime home track, the 2.0-mile Main Circuit at Summit Point Motorsports Park in the West Virginia panhandle.
While the AKRA opener was very well attended and produced some of the best karting competition at Summit Point in years, it didn’t go without some controversy. As expected, the CIK LO206 Senior races were a couple of the biggest and most competitive of the weekend. A large pack of racers competed for wins in both Saturday and Sunday’s 30-minute 206 Senior contests, and both day’s races resulted in WKC / AKRA officials disqualifying a number of drivers for excessive pushing and/or bump-drafting.
At sprint tracks, particularly in the 206 categories, bumping and pushing is the norm and within the rules. At road races, however, due to safety concerns this practice / driving style is in many cases frowned upon and against the rules. With the growing popularity of the Briggs LO206 engine platform over the last decade, many sprint racers are now entering their LO206-powered CIK karts in road race regional and national events around the country. This has been a growing occurrence for a few years now, and numbers and competition have continued to rise in the classes in every road race series around the U.S.
With their next event at the Summit Point Shenandoah Circuit July 10-11 now quickly approaching, last week WKC officials issued the following press release recapping their AKRA opener and reiterating a few club rules, mainly regarding the popular CIK LO206 Senior classes.
Here’s the official WKC press release:
Woodbridge Kart Club Hosts Highly Successful AKRA Season Opener; Clarifies Rules for Remainder of 2021
For Immediate Release
June 7, 2021
The Woodbridge Kart Club Board of Directors and event staff would like to thank the membership and karters from across the U.S. for supporting the second race of the season for WKC and the season opener for the 2021 AKRA National Road Racing Series. Approximately 430 entries complemented the event making it the largest karting event at Summit Point Motorsports Park in the last decade. The event was highlighted by the 2021 edition of the Animal Nationals which was promoted by Jonathan Tedder and Josh Nevels.
Fifty-three karters competed for cash prizes and the field was comprised of multiple generations of drivers both recent and those that have been removed from the sport for quite some time. Competitive spirits were rekindled and the paddock area at Summit Point was reminiscent of the days from the late 90’s and early 2000’s. In the end, it was Pennsylvania’s Zachary Linsell claiming the top prize at the Animal National Champion.
Many other competitive fields took the historic 2-mile track and the racing was safe and fierce all weekend long. The Board is looking forward to continuing this momentum to round 3 of the WKC campaign on July 10-11, 2021, at the Shenandoah Circuit at Summit Point Motorsports Park. This event will set up what hopes to be a duplicate of the May event with the second AKRA National at Summit Point to take place August 21-22.
Next, the Board wants to clarify and reiterate a few rules in place for 2021. The first is to address any confusion within the written rules pertaining to floor pans in the CIK LO206 division. This class, like all others, operates under AKRA rules which are in line with Cup Karts North America (CKNA) rules. The rule states that “Floor pans are permitted within the main side chassis rails, between the front and center (waist) chassis rails. No portion may be above the centerline of the rear axle or within the front bumper loop.” To clarify this further, full floor pans are NOT permitted in the CIK LO206 category. For questions concerning all other classes, please reference the AKRA tech manual which is located digitally on the WKC website.
Finally, the Board would like to reiterate that bumping and pushing is not an acceptable practice in any WKC road racing division. The penalties have been stated clearly at every event and will continue to be enforced. To help clarify the illegality of this practice, the Board of Directors has adopted the following rule update:
Pushing/Bump drafting is contact to advance 2 or more karts forward to effect a gain/benefit over other competitors. This act can be dangerous and is illegal. The penalty is disqualification from the race and in the case of multiple/continuing disqualifications may result in suspension of your right to compete for a sustained period of time. This rule is in addition to the current rules with regard to rough/aggressive or improper driving. While racing it understood that minor, incidental front to rear contact may happen, intentional pushing and bump drafting will not be tolerated and the penalty will be no different than being light at the scale or using illegal fuel or illegal engine. Pushing and bump drafting are considered a performance gain no different than the aforementioned offenses and will carry the same penalty at minimum of a disqualification and both the pusher and pushee are subject to the same penalties.
Simply put, pushing and bump drafting is considered cheating to gain a competitive advantage. Don’t do it and you won’t have any issues! The Board always welcomes your input, feedback, and suggestions. Please don’t hesitate to reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to seeing everyone again in July.