Most people are familiar with the kind of outdoor track facility that smells like gasoline and hosts a dozen or so inferior karts, half of which are usually sidelined due to mechanical problems. Near the ticket window, there are a few arcade games, only a few of which are in working condition, alongside a vending machine or two for pop and chocolate bars. And, if you’re lucky, an old picnic table exists somewhere on the property that will allow you to sit down and watch your friends or loved ones as they make their way around the track, all the while complaining about the kart’s lack of speed.
Luckily, as we discovered, there’s Pole Position Raceway, a 1/4-mile indoor track experience that takes go-karting to a whole new and amazing level with exceptionally clean and modern facilities and electric karts that reach speeds of 45 mph. No more gas fumes, no more greasy tracks, no more weather concerns, and no more wrestling with your kart in an attempt to make it go faster because Pole Position Raceway is home to the high-performance Formula EK20 Pro Kart – a European design of top-notch technology. This kart accelerates and handles like a sportscar and will give you a racing experience unlike anything you’ve encountered at an outdoor track.
Given the popularity of Pole Position Raceway, the number of outlets is rapidly growing and now includes locations in Buffalo, Corona, Dallas, Houston, Jersey City, Long Island, Murrieta, Oklahoma City, Rochester, St. Louis, Summerlin, Syracuse, and Las Vegas, which is where BHDT Magazine participated in 3 races in order to experience the facilities. To say that we were impressed is an understatement.
‘The Strip’ location, just minutes from Las Vegas Blvd and across the street from The Palms Hotel and Casino, is surprisingly large and extremely clean, with some over-the-counter food and beverage options as opposed to vending machines, plenty of seating, updated arcade games, a lookout area from which visitors can oversee the entire track, and much in the way of race-related decor. NHRA, Motocross, and Formula 1 is all represented with various firesuits, helmets, and vehicles. However, the track leans heavily toward NASCAR, likely because this particular location is known for its ties to NASCAR Champion Kurt Busch, who spent a great deal of his childhood at this facility while learning to race. To this end, Busch memorabilia can be seen in several places throughout the venue. Additionally, the firesuit of 7-time Champion Jimmie Johnson is displayed in a glass case, Brad Keselowski’s helmet also encased, and the team shirts of Kyle Larson, Kyle Busch, and Tony Stewart hang proudly over the track. It is said that during NASCAR’s Champions Week in Vegas, it is not uncommon to see the drivers venture into Pole Position in order to race alongside fans.
Participants need to be at least 48″ tall in order to operate a kart. That said, the track itself is designed as a road course, with several tight turns and very few straightaways so it’s definitely a challenge. Teens and adult drivers with a concept of speed and peddle control undoubtedly will get more out of the experience than small children who might have difficulty navigating the track.
The Vegas location is all about convenience. Not only is the facility open all year round in order to accommodate fun-seekers, it also offers shuttle service to and from your hotel so there’s never a need to grab a cab or hop a bus if you’re a tourist and unfamiliar with the area. With all of this as well as a friendly and helpful staff, it’s no wonder Pole Position has become a great destination for family outings, celebrations and parties, and corporate team building events. And while you there, you can pose with the sweet ride that’s parked next to the go-kart entrance – a candy apple red Dodge Challenger that racers like to pretend is the grand prize.
If you are an adrenaline junkie, someone with a need for speed and determined to win, it’s easy to see how Pole Position in Vegas would become every bit as addictive as the slot machines on The Strip. So if you’re in the area or plan to be, don’t miss it. Or venture to any of the other 13 locations previously mentioned, and keep your eyes open for more coming soon seeing as Pole Position expands across the US and to a city near you. Check it out!