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Running With The Big Dogs: Trophy Kart

Posted in Features on April 8, 2008
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Photographers: Dave Waters

One of the hottest tickets in off-road racing right now has to be Trophy Karts - half-size replicas of today's most technologically advanced and fastest off-road race vehicles on the planet. The difference is that these Karts are built for both kids and adults. At the helm of the Trophy Kart organization and responsible for bringing them to the masses is legendary off-road racer Nick Baldwin and creator Nestor Berardi.

Known for his no-nonsense approach on the track, Baldwin has taken the same approach to promoting Trophy Karts in the highly successful Championship Off Road Racing (CORR) Series. There are currently three race classes in the CORR Series for the Trophy Karts: one for kids 8 to 11 years old, one for ages 12 to 15 years old, and another for 16 year olds.

"On any given weekend at a CORR race, we have at least 50 to 80 Trophy Karts in attendance, ready to race. It's amazing how everyone involved takes the racing so seriously, from the custom trailers and support vehicles to the fully staffed race teams with corporate sponsorship deals," says Baldwin.

Following the same rules and requirements as their fullsize CORR Series counterparts, each of the Trophy Karts must adhere and be built to the exact specifications of the series. Each vehicle must go through a technical inspection while its driver attends mandatory driver meetings and participates in contingency programs.

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On any given weekend, 50 to 80 Trophy Karts attack the same racetrack that their fullsize counterparts race. Competition is fierce between all of the drivers, as the bragging rights for a win are the same as the trucks that their heroes Alan Pflueger, Robby Gordon, and Carl Renezeder drive.

"The amount of requests for distributorship and dealership opportunities we receive on a daily basis is staggering. We must average at least four to five requests a day from interested parties worldwide," comments Baldwin.

In addition to being a hit on the racetrack, the Trophy Karts are equally at home on family trips to the desert or dunes, where they can be enjoyed purely for their entertainment value.

Countless adults are trying to figure out how to get behind the wheel of one of these Trophy Karts, even if for just one lap. We guess it just goes to show that no matter how old you get, you still need to have toys to play with.

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VEHICLE: 2008 Trophy Kart
CHASSIS: MIG-welded 1-inch-od mild-steel frame and cage
ENGINE: 265cc {{{Subaru}}} with a single-speed CVT/automatic transmission
DRIVETRAIN: Beltdriven and chaindriven
FRONT SUSPENSION: Custom-fabricated solid billet-aluminum upper and lower
A-arms, mild-steel-plated spindles, and King coilover
racing shocks
REAR SUSPENSION: Trilink system, billet-aluminum swing arm, King coilover
racing shocks
TIRES/WHEELS: 20x10x8 Carlisle Super Turf tires/10x8 aluminum Douglas
racing wheels
INTERIOR: Pro-Am steering wheel with quick-disconnect coupler,
single PRP bucket racing seat, and PRP four-point safety
OTHER PARTS: One-piece Glassworks Unlimited fiberglass body, custom-
fabricated exhaust system, front and rear race bumpers,
bed-mounted spare tire
PhotosView Slideshow

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