The fifth track that we ventured out to was the Nola Motorsport Park in New Orleans. This is probably one of the biggest facilities, especially from a kart and motor racing facility that I've been to in the USA. Nola Motor Sports Park has a huge motor racing circuit there, but also have the driver training facility kart racing circuit and rental karts. The paddock space in between the car racing & kart racing paddock, it's just monumental! A big facility that offers a bit of everything for, for everyone. If you're the recreational karter, you can go rental karting and you're driving on half of the NOLA Kart circuit which is an impressive layout for rental karting.
From the kart racing side, there are multiple layouts they can configure to race on. The smaller layout is used for club racing, while the full circuit used at SKUSA is around 20 corners. The circuit has a long straight, but also a lot of technical sections as well. Fast chicanes where drivers can look to utilize the inside curbs and it's also held a Rotax Grand Finals in the past. I think it's the only one to be held in North America. That's cool to have that on your resume.
The rental kart facility is a good way to start off if you’re looking to get into karting. Rental karting is the cheapest way to see whether you like the sport, whether you can afford to do it. It's a bit of a steppingstone, but obviously it's not a true indication on how fast the racing karts go. But like I said, it's a good starting point for people to get familiar with, whether they want to get involved in in kart racing.
Driving NOLA was a fun truck to drive. It's fast on the back straight and a lot of it does come down to slipstream, especially in the cadet categories. You could be three or four karts’ lengths in front until you get to that main straight and suddenly you have karts slipstreaming right up to you. But then once you get through the technical chicanes, drivers can use some of those inside curbs and there are some hard braking zones as well. That's where the more experienced drivers are able get an advantage on their competition. I think it's a good track for plenty of passing opportunities. There is skill involved in driving that track well, which is again, what we are looking for, from a racing point of view.
You want that technical aspect to make it challenging for the driver and make sure that you are learning when you are racing. I’m not sure if they have a kart shop facility at the racetrack to support racers, but nothing was available the day we were there.
That was the fifth track we visited on this trip, starting in Indiana. I think we covered about 3,300 miles within a couple of weeks. It was a very busy couple of weeks travelling across the country to experience these five tracks.
To learn how to drive this track fast, be sure to check out our track guide here that gives drivers all the braking markers, throttle zones and apexes from every angle.