Tiger Kart Club

Getting Started in Karting

Getting started in karting

Karting is for EVERYONE

First things first, you’ll need to join a Karting Australia Affiliated Club like Tiger Kart Club. Membership gives you access to the club’s track for practice and racing and allows you to join in on all the fun stuff like club championships, social events and more.

Next, you’ll need to determine which introductory class you are eligible to join and compete in. There are three main classes in Australia: Cadets, Juniors and Seniors – all based on age. Have a look at the table to determine your class:

All of Australia’s karting membership administration is handled through the online Karting Operations and Management Portal known by everyone in the karting community as KOMP.

You can join our club online via KOMP by signing up for a free account.

You’ll need your own kart, of course!

A kart consists of a few main components:

  • A chassis (the main frame incl. axles, steering components etc.);
  • Bodywork components (all the brackets and plastics);
  • A seat;
  • Rims, hubs and tyres;
  • An engine.

Each of the above is dependent on the class or category the driver will compete in as each class is allowed to only use a specific type of chassis, engine or engine components and tyres.

For example, the Cadet class consists of two categories: Cadet 9 and Cadet 12.
The Cadet class is currently only allowed to use the Vortex Mini Rok engine for racing, with Cadet 9’s using a restricted version of the engine.

Importantly, all the main kart components are homologated, meaning that the racing governing body has assessed and approved the components for fair competition based on their compliance with the relevant rules and regulations of a given class.

Here’s a great video that explains the process of homologation and why it’s important for fair competition:

While all of this may sound complicated, the most important thing to understand is which class you’ll be competing in as this determines which engine you’ll need.

There are a number of different kart chassis manufacturers so it’ll be a good idea to first chat with someone at the track before you buy.

There are a number of kart shops/dealers in the Perth metropolitan area and we can help you find a good shop that is newbie-friendly and offers great value.

A tip: while buying new is great, there is often a good selection of second-hand karts, engines and equipment available for sale within the karting community. However, talk to us before you buy second-hand as you want to make absolutely sure your kart and engine is in top shape and right for your age and racing class.

As with all motorsports, safety is super important in karting and there are strict rules that apply on and off the track to ensure everyone is participating is a safe and responsible manner.

Most kart shops will have all the safety gear you need. Motorsport race gear shops also have karting gear, so check them out too.

Mandatory safety equipment includes a full-face helmet, a race suit, racing boots and gloves.

Some optional safety equipment include padded rib vests and neck braces – these are highly recommended, especially for younger drivers.

A safety tip: never skimp on a racing helmet. Always buy one that complies with recognised safety standards such as Snell or FIA and which is properly sized for your head. Helmets have a pre-determined life span with an expiry date, so make sure you aren’t buying an outdated helmet. Also keep in mind that if your helmet comes with a tinted visor then you’ll also need a clear visor if you want to practice or race during night-time events (which are awesome!).

Karting is all about fun and family vibes. Everyone’s super friendly and happy to help newbies.

Don’t be shy to ask lots of questions at your kart club, state association or local kart shop.

It’s a great idea to meet up at the track with someone who knows about karting, especially during the early days and until you’ve found your feet. They can help answer your questions.

Feel free to chat with other racers at the track. They may not tell you all their racing secrets, but they will always try and help where they can. Karting buddies often become lifelong friends!

The steps above are a quick summary of what’s required to get into karting. For even more information, click here for the Get Started in Karting Information Booklet published by Karting Australia.

Buying your FIRST KART

Karting is one of the most affordable forms of motorsport and is considered the first step in any serious racer’s career.

Click here to watch a video with some great tips on how to buy your first kart chassis.


Applying for a licence is easy and is done online by using the KOMP system.

Click here to get access to the KOMP system and apply for your licence.


All Drivers under the age of 18 will require their parent(s) and/or legal guardian(s) to hold a current Participant’s or Karting Australia Driver’s Licence. The Participant’s Licence will enable them to enter a minor into a Karting Australia sanctioned event and to apply for a licence upgrade for the minor.

The process to obtain a Participant’s Licence is simple and free by using the KOMP system.



In this Karting Australia Get Started in Karting video we explain what to assess when looking to purchase your first chassis.


In this Karting Australia Get Started in Karting video we discuss the safety equipment required.


In this Karting Australia Get Started in Karting video we explain the tools you require.

Observed Driving Sessions

Before a Cadet-aged Driver can compete in a race, they must pass an Observed Driving Session (ODS).

In accordance with Karting Australia Competition Rules, a Cadet-aged Driver must complete at least eight (8) hours of driver training/practice on a Karting Australia (KA) licensed track prior to undertaking an Observed Driving Session (ODS).

At all times while the Driver is undertaking the required training/practice, they must be supervised by either:

  • A Parent who is the holder of a Participants License; or
  • A person who is 18 years of age or older who is the holder of a racing licence issued by or recognised by Karting Australia; or
  • A driving instructor/coach who is recognised by Karting Australia.

The person supervising the Cadet Driver’s Practice sessions must complete the details of the practice undertaken on the New Cadet Driver Practice Log form (downloadable by clicking here).

Once eight (8) hours of driver training/practice has been signed off, the form must be provided to the Official who conducts the Driver’s ODS before they are permitted to undertake the ODS.

Once the Driver has passed their ODS, they’ll be issued with a D-Grade licence which entitles the Driver to a “P” plate. The Driver must display a “P” plate in a location adjacent to their competition number at all times whilst they are on a track – including practice and racing.

The “P” Plate must continue to be used until such time as a Driver has been upgraded to the next level of licence or other conditions as outlined in the karting rules.

Driving Instructors/Coaches recognised by Karting Australia must have a valid Working With Children Check.

Preparing for your Observed Driving Session (ODS)
Click here for more information on helping your Cadet driver prepare for their ODS.

Kart & Driver Safety

Uncontrolled karting is dangerous, but with the proper controls, karting can be very safe.

Karting Australia and the Tiger Kart Club takes its responsibilities to safety very seriously. Everyone who participates in any way in the sport of karting has a role to play when it comes to creating a safe environment in which we conduct our sport.

Karting Australia circuits and racetracks are required to be built and maintained in line with Karting Australia’s Circuit Regulations and Guidelines.
They are regularly inspected and licensed by accredited Circuit Inspectors.


Karting Australia provides the highest quality and the highest levels of insurance cover of any association in Australia. Every Licensed Driver, Official and Club Volunteer are fully insured whenever they are participating in approved competition and recreational karting on a Karting Australia approved club circuit. Public Liability insurance and general accident insurance comes with your Licence.