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Start Your Engines

If you have pre-teen or teenage children, you’ll be thrilled to learn that there’s a venue guaranteed to deliver action-packed, high-adrenaline fun. A quick 20-minute drive over the new Huey P. Long Bridge will land you in Avondale and at the front gates of the NOLA Motorsports Park. The park complex opened in 2012 after its owner, and quite possibly New Orleans’ biggest racing fan, Laney Chouest, completed the more than $70 million construction project. While NOLA Motorsports offers a sleek, top-quality venue for car racing, the main attraction for families is the go karts facility where you and your kids can get behind the wheel and experience the fun of speed.

When you first approach the park, you’re greeted at a security gate where you receive directions to the particular part of the park to which you’re heading. NOLA Motorsports consists of many parts: the go kart track, the Autocross Pad, and by far the largest part of the 7.6-acre complex, the road course race tracks. Karting was our priority, so we made our way down Torque Drive until we arrived at the registration building and observation decks of the karting facility. Boasting the largest go kart track in the country, this is karting far beyond what you may have experienced at typical amusement park go kart tracks. Your crew will be experiencing the thrill of speeds up to 25 miles per hour as they twist through S-turns on one of three racing circuits. With its “arrive and drive” service you can visit the park without reservations, be looping the track in no time at all. It is important to note that some preparation is necessary beforehand if you are bringing friends or planning a party for your child. The go karts don’t have a minimum age, but they do have a minimum height requirement of 52 inches. All participants under the age of 18 must have a parental release form signed as well. This form, which can be downloaded from the website, must be signed if the parent isn’t in attendance.

Operating hours are seasonal, be sure to check nolakarting.com for the current schedule. 

Once the paperwork is complete, drivers proceed to the track, where they’re fitted with a collar and helmet, seated in their cars and line up to wait for their 10-minute drive time to begin. Once the green flag is waving, the karts take over the course and the race is on. Ensuring the experience is wholly authentic, the flag will change to a yellow caution flag if a kart temporarily goes off the track to let the other drivers know not to pass at that time. A checkered flag lets the drivers know that the race is over and it’s time to return to pit row for the results. Only one driver can claim first place, but all will claim a fun time and a great memory. If being a spectator is more your speed or if your junior set doesn’t meet the height requirement to drive a kart, consider heading out to the Kart Sprint Races that take place monthly. With two observation decks and catering packages, the karting facility is also a great choice for corporate events.

Visit nolamotor.com for more information on the park and upcoming events. 


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