Motorsport UK’s new karting pathway to offer greater access to the sport

Friday 28 October 2022

Motorsport UK’s ground-breaking changes to the UK karting pathway, that will enable a more meaningful route through the karting pyramid, have attracted widespread support from the industry’s leading manufacturers.

Earlier this year, Motorsport UK set out a vision to enhance the karting pathway. Starting from the 2023 season, the new pathway is designed to offer greater access to the sport, a more linear progression, and provide manufacturers with an opportunity to develop new equipment and technologies.

This included the introduction of a new ‘Inter’ category, adjustments to the age criteria, and the opportunity for manufacturers to submit new engine and powertrain variants for homologation across all age groups, aligning Motorsport UK’s karting regulations closer to the global equivalent.

As a result, a number of globally renowned products are now set to hit the market from next year, and the greater flexibility around age criteria will help forge more meaningful pathways through the sport for the stars of tomorrow.

As the sport continues to drive forward the race for sustainability, Bambino will see the phased introduction of electric powertrains from 2024.

For Cadet, the switch to a CIK specification, 950mm chassis has seen a record number of applications for homologation, a sure sign of the positive regard in which the introduction of international-standard products to the class have been received.

The current IAME Gazelle engine will be phased out in favour of the newer restricted Water Swift, and the Honda GX200 will be introduced to ultimately replace the older GX160 version. Both the IAME Gazelle and Honda GX160 will retain British Kart Championship grids for 2023. Internationally renowned powertrain suppliers Rotax and Tillotson will further enhance the standard of competition at a national level.

Existing 900mm chassis will remain valid for competition in club events for at least a further three years.

Confidence in the new Intermediate category is assuredly high, after the news that Honda, IAME, Rotax, TKM, Tillotson and, from 2024, Vortex, will bring their powertrains to the class.

A number of these engines already serve as the benchmark for international competitions with others, such as Tillotson, offering a more accessible, cost-effective option, giving a broad range of products to suit each competitor, without the need for compromise in on-track performance.

The UK’s Junior and Senior classes are already among the industry’s leading lights in terms of single-make categories, and therefore remain unchanged for 2023, but they too will benefit from the addition of Vortex in 2024 to add further prestige.

The chart below sets out the technology now set to be available to competitors in each category, subject to track testing and approval, as well as the eligible age to participate:

“This is an exceptionally exciting time to be involved with karting in the UK, and I’m pleased with the community’s response to Motorsport UK’s changes to the pathway,” said Dan Parker, Motorsport UK’s Karting Manager.

“What we have witnessed is a real desire to bring internationally renowned products to a national level of competition, giving competitors even greater choice over their equipment, and raising the standard across the board as a whole.

“Our demonstration events to showcase these technologies so far have been very successful. The feedback from teams and drivers has been really positive overall, and I’m excited to see these changes come into force from next season.”

Anybody with further questions can contact Motorsport UK directly using the email address, or alternatively contact their local club or team to discuss which classes they will be running from the 2024 season onwards.