Archive for the ‘People and Things’ Category

Need for Speed???

Thursday, March 23rd, 2006

If you want to experience hair raising speed on four wheels, you must try the Bondurant Ultimate Shifter Kart Course. The shifter karts have a six speed manual transmission, and are capable of going zero to 100 mph in six seconds, and zero to 100 to zero mph in around 10 seconds.

I didn’t start feeling comfortable in the kart until the end of the three hour class. The experience of driving a shifter kart is unlike driving any street car. First, you sit a few inches off the ground, in a machine with mind-blowing acceleration ( check out the Kart vs. Corvette video on the Bondurant site). The karts do not have a clutch pedal, nor an H-pattern shifter. My left foot kept reaching for the clutch, and instead found the brakes. Unfamiliarity with the sequential gearbox would cause me to lose track of which gear I was in. Making those two blunders and then trying to find the right line into a high-speed turn is an unsettling experience, to say the least. When one finally nails a good lap, it’s quite a rush.

I can’t wait to go back for “lapping sessions…”

My Shifter Kart Images

Jeff Nappi’s Shifter Kart Gallery, with videos!

Four Guys and a Shifter Kart...

Kart Racing

Friday, March 10th, 2006

I’ve been a motorsports fan for as long as I can remember; longer than I’ve been involved with either photography or running. For years, I was a spectator, watching races live or on TV. Then, some friends from work and I discovered indoor karting. Being a spectator is fun, but skimming along 3 inches off the ground at 45 mph is way more addictive.

So far, my racing has been limited to the two indoor tracks at F1 Race Factory in Phoenix. I can’t seem to get enough, but at the same time, look forward to going faster. So, in a couple weeks, it’s on to the shifter karts at the Bondurant Ultimate Shifter Kart Course. The shifter karts have a six speed manual transmission, and are reportedly capable of going 120 mph. I can’t wait! It should be a blast.