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Release #6

KartSport Whangarei's annual Summer Slam event on 11/12 January witnessed the first competition for the new Vortex Kiwi Cadet Rok 3 ss.jpgMini ROK engine. Honour of recording the first race wins fell to Dylan Grant (Cadet ROK) and Ben Morrison (Vortex Mini ROK). Overall class winners for the weekend were Joshua Parkinson (Cadet ROK) and Ben Morrison (Vortex Mini ROK).

Drivers are loving the responsive nature of this all new one make package from Italy that KartSport New Zealand believes will boost participation numbers.

Cadet ROK dad Frazer Parkinson:
"The first thing I noticed was how much cleaner the kart was after we ran the engine in ! The Rok engine with its full exhaust meant there wasn’t the usual burnt oil all over the back of the Cadet at the end of the day. 
The engine itself was easy to work with. Josh loves the Touch and Go (TaG) start, and the ability to restart came into its own when he tangled with a back marker in the first race. The engine stalled, but he was able to restart himself and finish.
Another advantage of the TaG -  no more spinning clutches off on the grid !
After 2 full days of practice and racing, the battery still had plenty of capacity in it. Nice to know that I can  run it for a weekend without worrying.
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It was interesting to see that the lap times were comparable to the Raket. The fastest Raket vs the fastest Rok was only a couple of tenths, not that it mattered because they weren’t racing against each other, although, I think it would be great to be able to do that. I am sure some tracks will favour the Rok slightly and others the Raket. 
The rev limiter means that you have to compromise a bit in terms of acceleration on the exit of the tighter corners, but this ensured we had the speed on the straights. The key was to find a balance. We could have matched the Rakets in the corners with more teeth, but then we would have had less top speed. At the end of the day, it puts the focus on setup and driver.
People are going to love the new engine, especially the drivers ! It will be great to see a full field out there. I am hoping we see a few more appear on tracks this weekend.

Vortex Mini ROK driver Ben Morrison:

"I thought I would be slower than the Yamahas, but I managed to pull out and pass easily.
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I started at the back for each race, because I thought I would hold everyone up, but I ended up getting 2nd and 3rds.
Its great starting the kart by myself and being able to get it going if it stops on the track.
The motor is nice and quiet and it looks like a real race engine "

Vortex Mini ROK dad Lydon Morrision:
"We had a great weekend at Whangarei. I was surprised how well the ROK went as Ben and I were on a big learning curve. Not having to carry around a starter motor, not constantly checking squish and swapping carbs gave more time to work on kart set up.

I think as more ROK's hit the track, fellow karters will see the huge benefit of these engines.

Alex Grant ran his ROK in JR for practice and both karts were equal speed. It was great to see the different driving skills of Ben and Ashton coming to the fore, rather than the most expensive motor wins."

“There is no disputing motor racing is expensive but karting is still cheap motorsport and this new engine gives our entry classes: Cadet (6-11yrs) and Junior Restricted (9-13yrs) a purpose built, off the shelf race ready package” Project Leader Graeme Moore added. “Kartsport New Zealand was determined to put parity back into the sport and at the same time deliver a modern easy to use and maintain package that anyone can run.”

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Moore understands the challenges. Like many parents he entered the sport with his son Richard without the benefit of a mechanical or engineering background and found the previous offerings a minefield of complexity and development cost.  The GFC has added even more pressure on fledging racing families and while the sport has been well served by the previous Raket and Yamaha engines the new Vortex Kiwi Mini ROK has the added benefit of allowing the engine to transition from the Cadet Age Group to the older age group Junior Restricted with just a simple change of its electronic rev limiter and exhaust header allowing increased power for the older age group. 


Moore is delighted with the response from both drivers and parents “The rev limiter was a key factor in the decision to run with this engine. It has the affect of significantly reducing wear and tear and therefore maintenance costs while at the same time the engine produces strong linear power so drivers can enjoy the feel, and learn the skills of moderating real horsepower through the corners.”

Captions: Cadet ROK drivers Joshua Parkinson (89), Dylan Grant (20) and Noah Skipps (73) and Vortex Mini ROK driver Ben Morrison (35) competing at the Summer Slam event. Credit: Sue McDonald, http://www.pbase.com/suemack/11_1_14




KartSport New Zealand