Tips for Becoming a Better Go-Kart Racer

For many people, going go-kart racing in Detroit seems like a super fun way to pass a few hours of time with friends or family members. They usually think that just because they already have a driver’s license or because they spend a lot of time playing car racing video games, they are sure to be the winner of their friendly indoor go-kart competitions.

Anyone that has had the experience of racing will tell those people that it can be a lot harder than one might think. There are plenty of would-be racers that have shown up at go kart-themed birthday parties or corporate events expecting to dominate the competition even though they have never tried it before. They don’t realize that driving the indoor go-karts is a lot different than playing an arcade game or even driving their own car on the interstate or down the highway.

For those first-time drivers that are super competitive, the following tips are intended to keep them out of last place and up on the leaderboard.

#1 Hands Stay on the Wheel

When driving a car down the highway or even across town, most people tend to relax back in the driver’s seat and casually place their hands on the steering wheel. They may drive with one hand on the 12 o’clock position while lounging in the seat or they might not pay too much attention to where their hands are, but it is important to keep hands on the wheel during a race.

When racing, drivers are advised to keep the hands firmly placed on 10 and 2, just like they were taught in driver’s education. Behind the wheel of an indoor go-kart is not the time to get creative or “cool” with how to hold the wheel. In addition, the hands should stay on the wheel for the duration of the race. There may be times when a driver is tempted to use one of their hands for a hand gesture, but those expressions of exuberance should be saved for when the race has been won.

#2 Stay Still

Another mistake first time driver’s make when driving indoor go-karts in Detroit is shifting and leaning in their seats. As the intensity of the race increases, it is natural for some people to start trying to lean forward in their seats or shift from side to side. While the driver is, of course, securely buckled, these shifts can still affect their driving skills. Shifting the weight around can inhibit racing performance.

#3 Experiment with the Brakes

Just like the brakes in regular cars are all slightly different, the brakes in a go-kart are also slightly different. It is always a good idea to spend the first lap or a portion of the first lap experimenting with the sensitivity of the brakes. Knowing how hard or how gentle of a tap is needed to get the desired braking power is an important quality to possess.

Failure to properly familiarize themselves with the braking system can lead to drivers hitting the brakes too hard and losing all momentum. On the other side of the coin, it can also result in not hitting the brakes hard enough and then immediately hitting a wall. While it may seem silly to waste part of a lap working with the brake pedal, it will pay off when the other drivers are being left in the dust because they don’t know how to properly handle the curves.

#4 Experiment with the Lines

It is impossible to know which the fastest line is on the very first lap around the indoor go karts Detroit track. For best racing results, a driver should do a little experimentation to see where the fastest lines may be. Drivers can try taking different corners at different speeds. The angles can be worked to find the best approach to each corner.

Another tip that can help is for drivers to keep an eye on the other karts whizzing around the track. It is likely that at least one or two of those indoor go-kart racers have been on the track before. It is easy to spot what may or may not be working if another driver has a better approach it can easily be adapted for an instant improvement.

#5 Keep it Straight

Go-kart racing in Detroit is all about keeping it straight and staying on target. A straight line is almost always the fastest way from point A to point B, and the same theory holds true on the go-kart track. Drivers that spend their time taking long arcs also tend to lose all their speed and momentum.

Drivers should attempt to make use of the straightaways as much as possible, it is the best place on the track to build up some speed. However, it won’t be very helpful if the driver is zig-zagging across the track.

#6 Practice. Practice. Practice.

Remember the old saying: Practice makes perfect. Many drivers may find that these tips are easy to read but difficult to execute. While that may be true, all it takes to perfect the execution is a whole lot of practice. Great go-kart racers aren’t born, they are made by racing…over and over again. There will always be room for improvement on the track, and when a driver is besting all their competition, it is important to continually beat their past times as well.

Looking for a place to practice all of these go karting skills? Head to the best indoor go-kart track in Detroit. Drivers can enjoy 8-minute sessions to perfect their driving. That is roughly 15 laps worth of practice in each session. The latest indoor go-kart models are fast and reach speeds up to 35 mph, and there can be 12 karts on the track at once for the ultimate competitive experience. Choose this fun option for a company event, bachelor party idea, or simply something fun to do with friends.