Go-Kart Crazy

Go-Karting fun on Hamilton Island

Go-Karting fun on Hamilton Island (Photo: Jenni Shah)

The most requested activity in our house is go-karts. Yesterday we finally gave in and took the kids out to Go-Kart Racing at Palm Valley. As the single carts can’t be driven by people under the age of 11, it was up to Mum and Dad to do some doubling (or dinking, if you are old-school). We signed our lives away and collected an attractive hairnet-helmet combo. We then had a briefing and got belted in.

Kids under 11 must be driven by an adult

Kids under 11 must be driven by a (responsible?) adult (Photo: Jenni Shah)

It would be fair to say that I’m a little competitive, so as soon as we were belted in and the attendant had started the engine my passenger and I were off. Halfway round the track we looked over to see our opponents just getting off the start line.

Family loyalties are tested when the racing starts

Family loyalties are tested when the racing starts (photo: Jenni Shah)

I checked with the guys at the track and they said that the fastest lap time was about 26 seconds. I don’t think we came close to cracking that at any stage, but we certainly gave a go on the home straight. There was a couple of wicked hairpin turns on the track and a hill to add a bit more interest. There was also a handy line painted on track, colour-coded to indicate when we should be slowing down what we should be applying the brakes, which was much appreciated!

Halfway through our 10 minute session I thought I would slow down and let the others catch up. Then we had great fun chasing each other around the track with the kids sitting in the back seat screaming “go faster, go faster”. The karts can get up to 45 km/h, but not when I’m driving!

At the end of a session the chequered flag waved, the red lights came on and we finished our final lap. My hands were shaking with the effort of holding the steering wheel, but I have to admit that I enjoyed it just as much as the kids did. All-in-all, what a great activity for a holiday with the kids.

Tip: You’ll need closed in shoes to ride on the go-karts, so don’t turn up in your thongs/jandals/flip-flops.