Kartcom News No. 13 out now!
It’s difficult to return to international karting competition this past month without mentioning the inexorable fall in the number of participants. There were only 44 drivers in the European Championship at Zuera, 25% fewer drivers at Castelletto in the Rotax Max Euro Challenge, so the figures unfortunately confirm a strong trend that still further clouding the discipline. Evoking the economic situation nothing new and masks other explanations, such as the enduring appeal of formulas like the CIK-FIA Academy Trophy.
Nationally, the KZ2 Coupe de France at Ostricourt didn’t attract as many competitors as could be expected for this popular category, but the first event of the 2015 NSK managed to gather 235 drivers in nine categories. 3MK Events also scored another success in the field of leisure karting at the SWS World Finals with 270 drivers from around the world. Finally, increasingly frequent Historic Kart meetings recorded a steady rise in their numbers.
It is as if the top level is receding more and more every year from the majority of karting enthusiasts. Money has taken on too much importance in international competitions to the point of discouraging most amateurs in the broadest sense. This is probably one of the current concerns of the Rotax Max Euro Challenge which is now dominated by factory teams, openly or disguised. When one isn’t a factory driver, and there are actually very few, it is often necessary to spend a lot of money to get hardware comparable to the big teams, in CIK or Rotax competition.
Karting professionals, chassis or engine manufacturers, retailers, teams, organisers, and others, though all share the same vital necessity of a greater number of drivers, this doesn’t show in their strategies. Isn’t it time, at the last moment, to take joint decisions in this direction instead of aiming for a small short-term victory over ones neighbours who are in the same boat?