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Tkart magazine

Once in a Lifetime | Try driving a monster kart

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09 February 2016
One thinks those oversized karts powered by super sport bike 100 hp engines you see on youtube doen’t really exist. Instead we actually got to try one made by Praga Kart in Adria. Here’s how we did

The kart track at the Adria International Raceway in Rovigo, Italy


Impossible to resist the temptation of a kart with a 100 HP engine... and because you’d really like to know if what goes around the web is actually true


adrenalin like there’s no tomorrow and getting to say: “It really is true”


besides physical safety? whatever pride you still have as a “driver”...


You think that certain things can only exist on Youtube - like monster karts, contraptions that look like karts, but run on oversized engines that seem like an exaggeration compared to 100 or even 125 cc motors. You know, those videos of a guy equipping a chassis with anything that has some turbo, some NOS? Always pretty much on the improvised side of things...
Anyways, you’re absoutely convinced all this only exists in some faraway place inhabited by weirdos looking to kill time. Then you find out the two weirdos - yes, there are two of them - don’t live that far from where you work and that their names are Marco Barotti and Marco Ziviani. Both are huge fans of mechanics, true motor heads, who dedicate 8 hours a day to IPK, the company that produces Praga Kart and OK1 chassis. Drawing inspiration precisely from Youtube, with blessings from the IPK management, the two decide to try first-hand.

They take a frame and get to work on modifying it, drawing on their welding knowledge. They basically lengthen it, so it’ll fit a rather unusual engine as far as karts go: a four cylinder 100 HP (or almost) taken from a Honda CBR 600 involved in an accident... They work endless hours, nights and weekends, but in the end the fruit of their labor is well worth it - as proven by the “likes” the photograph of “The Beast” gets on Facebook. The person writing is one of the many who see that photo. So, at the first chance I get to talk to Daniel Sliva (IPK’s CEO), I can’t help myself: “Does the kart on the web really exist?”. His delayed response and worried look, spelling out “what does the guy want?”, get cast aside by his honesty: “Yes, it exists, two of our guys created it.”
This said, it doesn’t take me much longer to get a test day out of him. And, at one point, the date actually arrives: Sunday morning, Adria Karting Raceway, right after the WSK Night Edition. The Monster Kart with full Praga “uniform” is sitting in a box at the end of the pit lane. It’s huge, long, out of proportion - in one word: wow!
It surely doesn’t look like a prototype, farthest thing from it. They really did a great job on it, finished and perfect in every single detail. Two things immediately stand out: the pedals (three of them, brake, gas, and clutch too) and the engine (of course, it’s huge!).
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