Horsham’s first - and only - indoor go kart racing facility celebrated its grand opening Saturday afternoon, six weeks after the 100,000-square-foot facility first opened its doors.
Montgomery County Commissioner Chairman, Josh Shapiro assisted co-owner Carl Asplundh with the ceremonial ribbon cutting to commemorate the new Horsham Speed Raceway location.
Speed Raceway, which fills the former Walmart in the Village Mall, offers two race tracks, two conference rooms, two party rooms, a winner’s circle, gift shop and more. Keith Asplundh, Carl’s son and partner, said the go karts run on electric as opposed to gas.
“Most go kart facilities are gas, but more and more in the future they’ll go electric,” he said.
Registering for a membership is the first step before your first race, but it is only $6 and it is good for a whole year.
“You have to have a membership, it’s required,” he said. “It’s just for the first time they race and it is good for as many races after that for a year, just so they can drive here in the future. And it’s $20 to race after that.”
There are two different kart types, one for kids and one for adults. To ride a kiddie kart, you must be at least 48 inches tall, whereas to ride an adult kart there is a 56-inch height minimum.
“The adults go 14 laps and the kids go 12 laps because they go slower,” Asplundh said. “It’s the same amount of time but they just drive slower, their cars are slower.”
Wayne Hargan of Quakertown said the employees control the speed of the karts with their computer system. The karts have the ability to reach 50 miles per hour.
“When they see you’re a lousy driver, they’ll cut you down,” Hargan said.
Asplundh attributed the raceway’s recent arrival to the addition of new businesses at the once-faltering Village Mall Shopping Center on Blair Mill Road.
“So once the landlord [said] we were coming here, and a in this shopping center, so it’s picking up already,” Asplundh said. “And I think in the future even more people will come in. It’s definitely going to help.”
One way the raceway owners hope to bring in customers is through birthday parties and corporate events. Chalfont resident Ron Ridolfo said it will be a great place for such parties and company events as well as family time and dates.
“There was nothing close by, so this is a good opportunity for this area,” Ridolfo said. “I think it’s going to be a nice family place for the weekends. It’ll be a great team-building event in the conference center.”
Employee Sean McCabe and his coworkers make sure racers know the important safety tips before they hit the track. Some of these reminders include wearing a tight seatbelt and a helmet with little to no wiggle room and to slow down around the corners of the tracks. He said it is a fun place to work.
“I love it here,” he said. “Everyone is enjoying themselves. It’s a fun atmosphere.”
Speed Raceway is open Tuesday through Sunday. Click here to learn more about safety measures, events, racing leagues and more.