The American Kart Racing Association enters its second season in the sprint karting market in 2017 and officials are anticipating growth in numbers and competition in both 2-cycle and 4-cycle divisions including the wildly popular Briggs LO206 and Animal powerplants and IAME Swift, Yamaha and TaG applications on the 2-cycle side.
With eight events on tap this year and a full slate of divisions for all ages, sprint karters are encouraged to join the fun and race with AKRA in 2017. Whether you can attend one event or all eight, rest assured you’ll be treated with respect and fairness as we continue to build the American Sprint Cup program and its following.
AKRA offers single event memberships for just $10.00 per driver, while if you’re interested in running for points and year-end awards packages, a full-year membership is only $45.00 for adult racers age 18 and up, and $15.00 for juniors age 17 and under. Juniors do have to join with a parent, bringing the total cost to $60.00 for a junior driver membership.
Once again in 2017, a driver must attend any three American Sprint Cup Series events prior to the Jacksonville Grand National Championship in October to become eligible for an AKRA Sprint National Championship. Each class’s best overall finisher at Jacksonville will be crowned 2017 national champion, provided the driver is eligible (attends three events prior to Jax). If a driver is the best overall finisher at Jax but has not attended three events, he/she will be crowned Grand National winner, but not overall national champion.
The Northern Tour and Southern Tour each have year-end points and awards packages, as well. Both the North and South open at Kershaw in April and then include three more rounds after CMP. Each of the four events in the North and South consist of two separate days of racing (Saturday and Sunday). Competitors may count their best 6 of 8 finals toward year-end points (two drops), meaning you can miss one complete weekend and still have a legitimate chance at a Northern or Southern Tour class championship.
If you have questions regarding the American Sprint Cup Series format, contact Bill McCutcheon or Keith Shampine.
NORTH / SOUTH SHOOTOUT at CMP
The American Sprint Cup Series kicks off its Southern Tour and Northern Tour four-race slates this April 21-23 at Carolina Motorsports Park’s technical 0.7-mile sprint track in Kershaw, South Carolina. One of the most challenging courses in the Southeast, entry numbers and competition are expected to be strong at CMP for what AKRA has tagged the “North / South Shootout” as the event will serve as both the Northern and Southern Tour series openers.
In March 2016, Kershaw hosted the first-ever American Sprint Cup Series event with approximately 50 karts in attendance for both Saturday and Sunday’s rounds. Officials are planning for increased numbers at this year’s CMP round with a strong contingent of racers expected from the North, as well as Southern Tour teams based in Georgia, Florida, Louisiana, Tennessee and the Carolinas.
Following Kershaw, the Northern Tour will re-visit three tracks that all helped make up the 2016 schedule. June 9-11 has the tour at the Genesee Valley Kart Club, a historic sprint track located in upstate New York a short jaunt south of Rochester. Boon & Sons, primary backer of AKRA Cadet racer Blake Boon, will again sponsor the Avon round.
Round 3 of the Northern Tour will have AKRA back at Thompson Kart Raceway in Thompson, Ohio, August 4-6. Last year’s Thompson round was the largest Northern Tour event with around 40 karts participating both days.
The Northern Tour will conclude at another historic sprint track, Nicholson Speedway in Chestertown, Maryland. This year the AKRA Nicholson round will take place Sept. 15-17, a few weeks later than 2016’s stop at Nicholson which will hopefully produce slightly cooler temperatures.
The AKRA Southern Tour has about two months between the CMP opener and Round 2 at Bushnell Motorsports Park in Bushnell, Florida. This year’s BMP round will take place June 23-25 and is sponsored by Diversified Plumbing of SW Florida, primary sponsor of AKRA Junior racer Elmer Edmonson. The new BMP track has received terrific reviews from those who have raced there, and AKRA is looking forward to more new drivers trying their hand at the 17-turn, two-thirds-mile course.
Monticello Karting in Monticello, Fla., serves as the only new track on the American Sprint Cup Series calendar. Regarded as one of the finest sprint kart track layouts in the country, AKRA will return a touring series to the one-mile venue this July 21-23.
The Southern Tour will close at another historic karting venue, the Lamar County Speedway in Barnesville, Ga. Southern Tour class championships will be decided Sept. 9-10 at Barnesville in an event title sponsored by Razor Chassis and Roberts Kart Shop of McDonough, Ga.
GRAND NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP
The 2nd Annual AKRA Grand National Championship will once again be held at the popular 103rd Street Sports Complex in Jacksonville, Fla., on October 27-29, where Grand National winners and overall AKRA national champions will be crowned.