Not sure whether this is the right forum for this post.
Three of us went to this go-kart track up on Dadushan in western Taichung today. It was very good fun.
The rental karts are 270cc ones made by Bowman in the UK. Most rental karts in the west are around 150cc I think. They’re pretty torquey, only have a brake on the rear wheels, and the steering’s quite high-geared as well, so it’s easy to end up going sideways or spinning. Most of my skidding was quickly brought under control, unlike somebody I saw spinning 180 degrees. It’s exhilarating hanging onto the steering, right on the limits of tyre adhesion, pushed sideways in your seat by what must be a couple of Gs of cornering force. It’s also tiring – after two 15-minute sessions my arms were aching. Sessions are 300NT each which may seem a lot but actually you get 15 intense, fun-filled minutes for that. Tickets are sold in the cafe on the second floor of the building, which has some nice outdoor seats from which you can see all the action.
Rosso, the boss is very friendly and gives you a little safety and technique talk before you go out the first time. His English is pretty good and if you want to talk racing lines etc. with him he’s very happy to oblige. He encourages you to take it easy and get used to the kart and track for the first few laps. He says that for most people, NOT skidding at corners will be faster. Sliding is an inefficient way of braking or accelerating – the only thing it can be good for is helping you change direction quickly at the beginning of a turn.
From time to time Rosso’s son, who looks about 12 years old, and somebody else – maybe his friend – have a private session on the track. This is necessary because they drive 100cc 2-stroke 20hp pro racing karts – very fast. It’s great to watch them going round and they have a high level of technique. They always wear full racing suits so they’re safe. Lucky boy! My 12-year-old students would be so jealous.
Regarding safety in general – the standard seems reasonable although not quite as paranoid as in other countries where they sometimes have remote control to slow karts down, and where you can be stopped for even touching another kart. They loan you a perfectly respectable full-face motorbike helmet – an M2R – and if you want to wear additional protective clothing that’s up to you. If you do drive too dangerously they will pull you over to the side for a lecture – this happened to a couple of guys who had been overtaking aggressively. There are tyre walls, and it’s very unlikely that your kart would flip over as they slide so readily.
Having said this, I think that going karting here might not be so great if you’re a very timid driver, unless you went at a quiet time or took a few of your like-minded friends and tried to get the track to yourselves for a round. People do go round quite fast and if you just want to toddle around it’s probably not nice being overtaken all the time.
To get there go out of town on Wuchuan West (Wuchuan Xi) Road. Go under the highway and carry on up the hill to where the industrial units start. You will come to a roundabout (traffic circle), with a petrol station across from you. You take the left fork and carry on up. Pass another petrol station on your right, and shortly afterwards the road will fork. The wide road bears right: you don’t take this but instead continue straight on up the hill on a much narrower road. After a little while the road widens and you should see a Maxxi tyre company factory on the left. The entrance for the go-kart place is just before the tyre company.
Their phone number is 04-2358-1056
They’re open 10am-10pm – don’t know if that’s every day.
Their website is rosso.com.tw