Rock Island Grand Prix is the world’s largest Street Kart race that has been taking place for 13 years running. Rock Island, Illinois has kart racers coming in from all over the United States and Canada to compete. They close off several streets in the District (which features restaurants, hotels, casino, bars, local businesses’ and live entertainment) and set them up one weekend a year for this much anticipated Labor Day event. We have been attending on and off for well over 10 years as racers and spectators. This years Labor day Rock Island Grand Prix was sponsored by McDonald’s. Can you guess who was super excited?! Yes, It was me but later when they warmed up it was definitely them! Thanks Ronald McDonald you made a couple of Boys really happy!
Of course Ronald McDonald isn’t the only excitement at the Grand Prix after all the whole reason we were there was because daddy was racing!
Kart racers come from all over the country to compete and race. If your a racing fan you’ll be watching the action just several feet from where your standing. Great kart racers such as Scott Speed,
Kyle Wiegand and several others have been crowned King of the streets in Several years past. There is an entrance fee and there’s pretty stiff competition because there is Money and trophy’s to be won by the fastest racers. You’ll get several rounds of practice in on Saturday, and racing starts on Sunday, but not before the locals put out a great Pancake breakfast spread ($6) for racers and spectators to fill their tummy’s before the race’s begin.
There are several classes to compete in and of course lots of rules for drivers but you won’t find much in the way of slacking competition. All are there to compete and many hope to win. If during the practice and qualifying your equipment fails and you need to switch something out such as a motor your automatically start from the rear. This happened to my husband. He raced and had the motor piston go bad and had to rent a motor from another racer to compete. The great thing about other racers is they are all willing to help each other out to an extent. Even with hubby starting in the rear he was able to work his way up to finish in 6th and 7th in his class. Of course we were all proud of him but he wasn’t too impressed.
My husbands Jerry’s moto is “If your going to race it isn’t so much that you finish and place, but you want to be fast and win! or at the least know your fast and crash because you made a mistake or someone in front of you crashed out and you couldn’t avoid them.” I’ll never understand his way of thinking but he’s always in it to win it and that’s why I love him.
Here’s a few pic’s from our day. Pit Crew hard at work and Daddy racing
Hubby won’t be happy til he gets his boys behind the wheel of a Go Kart. I personally don’t see us affording both our boys to race because the sport is very expensive for equipment like Karts, tires, motors, clutch and maintaining. Not to mention hotel stays and traveling. Without karting sponsors it will be next to impossible and we know that. I hope to look into sponsorship for them when the timing is right. There are so many ways to promote company’s with kart racing and they will get lots of exposure from either our crew members wearing t-shirts with company logos, decals displayed on kart, and trailer, to side bar posting on our Karting website. I’ll start possibly next near just depending…. Look at these two you know that they are ready. One is sitting in a Margay kart and the other a Tony kart which both are considered top of the line and very competitive in karting.
What do you think? Do they look ready? With a smile like that who wouldn’t want to sponsor my little guys. No Rock Island post would be complete with a Video of Rock Island Grand Prix Super can Heavy.
At Rock lsland you’ll find fun things at the family fun zone in the infield for the kids, and a craft fair. The Circus is in town this weekend, too. Labor weekend is hard to find a hotel local so if your interested in attending an event be sure to book your stay early. We stayed at the Comfort Inn this year with a great rate of $79 for the night with an indoor pool and free Continental breakfast in the a.m. If you don’t mind a musty smell when you walk in, or mind hearing what’s going on in the next room or a floor above you, or hearing upstairs shower running and listening to it drip for 15 minutes after then this is the place for you. The indoor pool (warm) and the hot tub are clean, but the air condition is a little high for me. It’s close to South park mall and walking distance from Denny’s and less than 15 minutes from the track which isn’t half bad when all the surrounding area hotel’s are booked.
Interested in reading more about Karting and local races? Check out Prokup MotorSports at http://kprokup.blogspot.com/. Kyle has some awesome pic’s from the race including one awesomely cool photo of my hubby.
Here’s a pic of Kyle and (my hubby) Jerry from Rock Island. Kyle races too but he was there taking pictures this weekend instead of competing.
Disclaimer: Topic, location and thoughts are that expressed of Night owl mama and Fandrey racing. Photos are marked to discourage others from taking them without our permission. No sponsorship money’s was received for this post but if your interested we’d gladly discuss sponsorship for next years race and mentions.