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Go Karts to drive fun Friday, Saturday in Duncan

DUNCAN  Since 1956, when partners Art Ingels and Lou Borelli unveiled the first go-kart in the Rose Bowl parking lot in Pasadena, Calif., karting has become the most popular form of vehicle entertainment and competitive racing in the world. The number of kart racers today is estimated to be nearly 2 billion.

In the United States, nearly 35 million go-kart enthusiasts of all ages participate in the sport annually. From indoor go-karting to outdoor tracks, and from amusement park rides to extreme and competitive racing, the small four-wheel vehicles Ingels and Borelli created and promoted have provided fun and excitement for decades.

Area karters and drivers from around the Midwest and Southwest get in on the competition Friday and Saturday when the fourth Red River Showdown is held in the arena at Stephens County Fair & Expo Center.

"We are delighted to be coming back to Duncan for the Red River Showdown," promoter and organizer Todd Hrncirik said from his base in Seymour, Texas. "We are expecting a super turnout, with a large number of racers coming from all over the southwest and beyond.

"In addition to Oklahoma, we've got people from Louisiana, Texas, Kansas and Missouri coming in, along with racers from New Mexico and some of the upper-Midwest states.

"That's a lot of hotel rooms being filled in Duncan and places like Lawton and Ardmore."

Sanctioned by the American Karting Association, the Red River Showdown is a series of races that lead to an overall championship at the end of the season. The Duncan stop is the third of the 2018 season.

"We are excited about coming back to Duncan again," Hrncirik said. "We've already had the first two shows, one in Wichita Falls (Texas) and one in Graham (Texas). Our number of car entries was down for a couple of years, around 130 to 140 were racing. But in our first two this season, we drew 164 (cars) and 169.

"We will have more entries at Duncan, because members of the Boss Asphalt Racing Club are coming over from Lawton, and that should bump us up to around 200.

"We really love coming to Duncan. We're very proud of the fan base we're developing there."

Action on the indoor track at the Expo arena gets underway with hot laps from 3-5 p.m. Following a 5:30 drivers' meeting, the first heats begin at 6 p.m.

On Saturday, there are no hot laps. The second heats begin at 9 a.m. and 3:30 p.m.

Tickets for spectators are $10 for adults and $2 for youths 12 and under. A ticket for a pit pass is $25.

The Lawton Constitution

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