Northland Tour Dirt Series goes 100% Animal

December 21, 2009

Briggs and Stratton Animal

3 years ago the Northland Tour Dirt Series started to convert the series from the standard five h.p. Briggs and Stratton flathead to the Animal overhead valve engine. Kart racing is converting from 1950’s flathead engine to the 1960’s overhead valve engine only 50 years later. The change is overdue.

Why we made the change

We try to keep the racer’s budget in mind whenever we make changes to the series. With that said we made the conversion to the Animal engines over three years. The first year we added one Animal class to each of the age groups, then in year two, two classes and now we are 100% Animal across all classes. We allowed the race teams to down size their flathead program slowly over the past three years.

The Animal engine

Over the past three years the Animal engine has been refined and improved, the rules have been tweaked and are now are very stable.  The animal engine is a great performer. It has proven to be a durable engine easily running twice as long between rebuilds. It’s design is superior to the flathead engine. From top to bottom the Animal is a better performing engine for racing. Here is my list of advantages of running an Animal engine.

  1. The Flywheel are aluminum and all the same, far better the cast iron version on the flathead
  2. The valves, seat and guides keep a good seal race after race
  3. The ignition produces a strong spark with minimal retarding at high RPM
  4. The sparkplug does not require indexing
  5. The block is strong and true and lasts easily 2 times longer than the flathead block
  6.  The rod and piston are stronger than the standard piston and stock rod in a flathead. Rod failures are far less than the flathead engine.
  7.  The rebuild parts are cheaper

I seen Animal engines pulled apart after 10 weekends of racing and only have 2 thousands of wear in the compression ring.  It’s a testimony for using good oil, maintaining  the air cleaner and the design of the engine. The Animal engine will save race team money. The cost of spare parts for the flatheads keeps increasing and some parts are no longer available. Maintaining a flathead simply just costs more than an Animal engine.

Northland Tour Dirt Series will be 100 percent Animal Engines in 2010.  I will miss the sound of 15 to 20 flatheads engine racing down the back straight away. See you in 2010.


Northland Tour Pavement Series 2010 Schedule

December 6, 2009

I am pleased to announce the Northland Tour Pavement series 2010 schedule. We would like to welcome Hawkeye Downs Kart Speedway in Cedar Rapids, IA to the tour.  The Mini Winston Cup will be added to the tour and run at Jamaica Kartway and Hawkeye Downs Kart Speedway. Additional local option classes will be announced later. The I.K.F. Pavement Grand National are tentative scheduled to be at Jamaica Raceway in August 12th through 15th. (pending I.K.F. approval). See the Northland Tour Pavement website for pictures of the Hawkeye Downs. I like to thank each track and the promoters for being part of the Region 3 and the Northland Tour Series.

April 24th and 25th
Jamaica Raceway
Jamaica, IA 50128
Randy Perkins 641-429-3050

May 22nd and 23rd
Hawkeye Downs Kart Speedway

4400 6th Street SW
Cedar Rapids, IA 52404

June 19th & 20th
Coulee Go Kart Raceway
W4985 County Road M
West Salem, WI
John or Kate Schaitel (608) 269-7034

August 7th and 8th
Jamaica Raceway
Jamaica, IA 50128
Randy Perkins 641-429-3050

Mid-America Pavement Speedway Nationals
8/13/2010 through 8/15/10
Jamaica Raceway
Jamaica, IA 50128
Randy Perkins 641-429-3050

Northland Tour Dirt series 2010 schedule

December 5, 2009

I am pleased to announce the Northland Tour Dirt series 2010 schedule. We would like to welcome GSR Kartway in Clintonville, WI to the tour. The Northland Tour Series will be offering a 25 point bonus for the weekend event at GSR Kartway. Anyone traveling to the event and entering both days will awarded 25 points to their total series points in the Northland Tour Series. Regional points will be assigned per the IKF Technical Manual. See the Northland Tour website for pictures of the track. I like to thank each track and the promoters for being part of the Region 3 and the Northland Tour Series.

May 15th and 16th
UPS University Plains Speedway
Brookings, SD 

May 29th  and 30th
GSR Kartway 11c
N11024 Hwy 45
Clintonville WI 54929
Phone Number: 920-915-1471
Race Day Phone: 920-687-0352

June 12th and 13th
Atwater Karting Speedway
Atwater, MN
Steve Minnehan 320-979-5294

July 31st and August 1st
Runestone Go-Kart Association
Douglas County Fairgrounds
Alexandria, MN
Tim Bitzan 320-808-1014

August 21st and 22nd
Cottonwood Speedway
26151 Westbrook Street
New Hartford, IA
Scott Edwards 319-346-1033

The seasons ended, don’t forget your sponsors

November 22, 2009

Over the years sponsors have had a big impact on fielding a Speedway Karting Team. The seasons ended, don’t forget your sponsors .

7 Ways to Thank  Your Sponsor!

  1. Have your driver write thank-you notes to your sponsors.
  2. Send your sponsor a completed list of race results.
  3. Send a photo of your race team.
  4. Shop at, support and patronize your sponsor’s business, and when you go in, mention to the clerk or owner that the business is your sponsor.
  5. Write a letter to the editor of your local newspaper publicly thanking your sponsor.  Clip and send a copy to your sponsor.
  6. It’s also a great idea to offer sponsors a form of recognition they can display in their place of business. Plaques, certificates, statuettes, etc., are easily affordable and make a lasting impression
  7. Stop by the sponsor’s place of business with your trophies and take a picture with the sponsor and their staff and give them the picture.

Here is two sample letters

Sponsor Thank You Letter – At the beginning of the season

[Sponsor’s Name]
[Sponsor’s Company Name]
[Sponsor’s Street Address]
[Sponsor’s City, State and Zip]

Date [Today Date]

Re Sponsorship [Race Team Name]

Dear Mr. [Sponsor Name]

On behalf of everyone at [Race Team Name] I would like to thank you for your very generous sponsorship of our team for the coming season. It has really sent a buzz through the entire team and everyone connected with our race team. I enclose some photos of our new kart and a thank you card from the entire team.

We have received the [Sponsor’s Name] logo images you sent through and have passed them on to our graphic supplier. In addition we have included the logo on the team trailer and newsletters.

You might be aware that there is a race scheduled at [Track Name] for Saturday and Sunday [Race Date]. If you, or anyone else from [Sponsor Company Name] would like to attend you would be a most welcome guest.

Here’s to the start of a great season follow us on the Northland Tour’s website ( Thank you again for your generous sponsorship. We hope that we will live up to our achievements of previous years. We promise to keep you updated of our progress.

With very best regards

[Driver’s Name]
[Race Team Name]

Sponsor Thank You Letter – At the end of the season

[Sponsor’s Name]
[Sponsor’s Company Name]
[Sponsor’s Street Address]
[Sponsor’s City, State and Zip]

Date: [Today Date]

Re: Sponsorship [Race Team Name]

Dear Mr. [Sponsor Name]

What a Season!

We have now come to the end of the season. The last Race on the season was a narrow victory over our class competitors.

As you know we have had a season of ups and downs. Our challenge for the Series title, which was looking very strong a few months ago, unfortunately could not be sustained. We did however finish in fourth place in a very strong Northland Tour Series.

But it is perhaps our stunning success in the [Track Name] for which this season will be particularly memorable. Our outstanding victory at [Track Name] being the crowning glory of a lot of hard work and a great year. Thank you again for attending the race.  I hope you enjoyed it all as much as we did. Photos of the event are posted on the Northland Tour website (  The press coverage was great too and I hope you feel we were great ambassadors for [Sponsor Company Name].

Thank you once more for your generous sponsorship over the last season. Your support is not something we take likely and is very much appreciated by everyone connected with the race team.

Very Best Regards

[Driver’s Name]
[Race Team Name]

Thank You Northland Tour Race Teams.

November 20, 2009

The Northland Tour Series racing season has come to a close; the prizes, trophies, plaques and jacket have been awarded. In recap, this year the Northland Tour, I.K.F. Region 3 had 946 entries over the summer. Eight tracks provided some of the best racing surfaces and greatest facilities in the Midwest. Runestone GoKart, Cottonwood Speedway Atwater Karting Speedway and UPS University Plains Speedway were the dirt series tracks. 61 Kartway, Coulee Go-Kart Raceway and Jamaica Raceway provide the pavement series great racing surfaces. The season concluded with the Pavement Grand Nationals at Jamaica Raceway.  The track promoters/owners and staff should be very proud of their facilities and, on behalf to the whole series, I’d like to thank them for their efforts.

The series for could not happen without the support of all to the 2009 sponsors for the Northland Tour. King Solutions, Briggs & Stratton, Firestone, ARC – Avenger Racing Chassis, Koopman Racing, Waller Racing, Uncle Frank’s, Hawk Performance Specialties, Oval Kart Parts, Snake Bite Cuts, PBR, Hole-Shot Racing Clutches, Goodson, Thor Oil, Subway of Chippewa Falls, Susa Racing Engines, DRE Racing Engines, Hoosier Racing Tires, Huse Racing Engines and Xtreme Cuts, EZ Fabricating,  The Toy Factory, Fast Factory, Maxxis, Digatron and Data Assist sponsored the 2009 season. I would ask each race team to support these sponsors by buying the products and services of each sponsor. My hat is off to this group of speedway karting supporters.

Next, I would like to thank the greatest group of sportsmen and competitors in the upper Midwest! These race teams and drivers came to the track prepared to put on a great show – week after week. There were a lot of different feature winners over the summer and I watched each driver and race team improved throughout the season. Never once in either series did anyone misbehave, throw things on the track in anger, push or shove a fellow competitor or crew member, no squad cars were called to the track –  just good clean competitive speedway racing – a credit to our series!

I’d like to congratulate each of the Northland Tour Series and IKF Region 3 Champions! The point races were very close this year. Great driving and preparation of the karts by the crew chiefs and pit crews paid off. All of the race teams stepped up to the challenge and improved their performance in 2009.

The Northland Tour would not happen without the help of the following people, Mark Alton and Joe Susa doing tech; Kattie Bear-Pfaffendorf, Sue Minnehan, Betty Norgaard doing sign-in and scoring; Doug Norgaard, Ron Hanson, Tony Crawford on the track. I would also like to thank Bill Hilger, President of IKF, for helping to find sponsors this season.

It was my pleasure to be part of the series – Thanks!

Hello world!

November 19, 2009

Welcome to This is your first post. Edit or delete it and start blogging!