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2009 Vintage Kart Nationals spins wheels for another years

As they say, “the good Lord brought the sunshine” and the Georgia Sprint Karting Association brought the Vintage Kart Nationals back to the Black Hills Circuit track on Highway 36 continuing a tradition that dates back to 1966. Says Bob Barthelemy of Georgia Sprint Karting, “The tradition and history – well, back then the karts weren’t vintage. They were the standard karts. It was real competitive on the circuit. Now there is a bit more of a social atmosphere around the track and it is a tradition we are proud to keep alive.” The event itself is named in honor of Helen Wilson who founded Lamar County Raceway (now Black Hills) with her husband, Richard. Barthelemy first stepped on to the local track as a spectator in 1971 and began racing here in 1972. ”During it’s heydey the WKA Winter Nationals in Barnesville averaged over 500 entries from all over the U.S. as well as several foreign countries,” he added. Even now with a smaller crowd and a slightly smaller following drivers like John Griffin of Columbus, Mississippi drive hundreds of miles to compete and catch up with other drivers and mechanics. ”You can only understand why we do what we do if you drive a kart yourself. It is a tough sport with great people and amazing competition.” Griffin attends on average 5 events a year and is pleased to keep coming back to Black Hills. The weekend recap goes a bit like this: Saturday racing was great in all classes especially the “C Opens” which boasts either single or dual engines; twin 130cc engines putting out about 40hp. Video courtesy of

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