Rotax 24 Hour race summary

ROTAX Motors deliver fault-free performance at 24-Hour team race. PALM SPRINGS, Calif. -- Neither heat nor humidity nor rain nor round-the-clock running could stop five ROTAX FR125 engines from delivering an incredible fault-free performance in...

ROTAX Motors deliver fault-free performance at 24-Hour team race.

PALM SPRINGS, Calif. -- Neither heat nor humidity nor rain nor round-the-clock running could stop five ROTAX FR125 engines from delivering an incredible fault-free performance in the first-ever ROTAX 24 Endurance Championship, hosted by SSC Racing of Arkansas at Kartways of Arkansas.

The first-ever 24-hour ROTAX race pitted multi-driver teams (ranging from four to eight drivers) in karts powered by ROTAX FR125 engines in standard RMax Challenge configuration. The team of BTK Motorsports of Decatur, Alabama, came home the winner, completing an astounding 1,881 laps around the seven-turn, half-mile sprint track. BTK had a 36-lap edge over Edens Motorsports of Sherwood, Arkansas.

"This event proves just how tough and reliable the ROTAX FR 125 powerplant is," said Steve Cannon, general manager of SSC Racing's ROTAX Division. "The popularity and sales of ROTAX engine is exploding and this 24-hour race demonstrates why. Finally, karting has an engine that delivers performance and reliability."

Traditional 2-cycle kart engines have never been known for their reliability -- but the ROTAX is. The five ROTAX FR125s -- 28-horsepower, water-cooled, 2-cycle, centrifugal low-rpm lockup clutch and on-board electric starter -- completed the round-the-clock endurance challenge without a single engine-related problem. (Considering the ROTAX's 50-hour rebuild standard, the teams could have repeated the feat, if they wished.)

The race began at 11 a.m. on a Friday under misty, rainy skies and ended at 11 a.m. on Saturday under bright sunshine. In between, the five teams made dozens of pit stops -- fuel stops about every hour -- and tackled various mechanical problems, such as replacing worn out chains, sprockets, and swapping in freshly charged batteries. Each team used around eight sets of tires and went through 80 gallons of fuel. Brake pads lasted only two hours.

"Teams really perfected the pit stops as the race wore on," said track owner Gary Smith. "With 15 minutes remaining, Edens Motorsports pitted and changed four tires, the rear sprocket, chain, brake pads, and battery, and topped off the fuel, all in four minutes."

All told, more than 8,500 laps were completed.

The winning BTK Motorsports team was led by driver Tim Lobaugh of Baroda, Michigan. Lobaugh won the RMax Challenge U.S. Championship last year and represented America at the international championships in Malaysia.

-ssc racing-

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Series Kart
Drivers Gary Smith