Just down the road from our camping base at Long Beach Camping and Touring Site in Norfolk is a high-adrenaline karting track. A mini Formula 1! It’s a very popular activity that my children were really eager to try out. They’ve never driven a powered go kart before, so I was a little nervous!
The cost is very reasonable. For children, it is £5 for 12 timed laps. The junior karts will go do between 20 and 25 mph … fast enough for my two. Now, Millie-Mae is ‘adult sized’, but sensibly we decided against putting her in an adult kart (£10 for 17 laps) as these can travel up to 50 miles per hour … no way was she (or me) ready for that! The karts are electric powered – faster and more powerful than the petrol ones.
How did they do?
We decided to try out the karting late one afternoon. When we arrived there was only one other kart on the track. The children were led down to the karts and they had a short demonstration (which pedal performs what function etc.). They were then fitted with a helmet … and off they went!
I have to confess, it wasn’t easy viewing 🙂 I’m what some people call a ‘nippy’ driver – never over the speed limit, but more often than not ON the speed limit. I hoped that my genetics might have been passed on to them. Lewis Hamilton grew up just down the road from me so I was hoping that my children would have a bit of the ‘speed king’ instinct of my famous neighbour … Nah. Millie-Mae and Toby were SO SLOW! They were like tortoises … By the time they’d completed their first lap, most people had gone home/made a coffee/eaten dinner/had a bath and gone to bed …
But then their confidence grew. And my hair quickly turned several shades of grey as I watched them get faster and faster and braking later and later. I was a nervous wreck.
Then the inevitable happened. A crash. 100% user error – it was Millie-Mae and she simply ‘forgot’ to turn and went headlong into some tyres at full speed. Thank goodness it wasn’t the faster adult kart. The impact winded her a bit (of course she blamed the kart). But she recovered and carried on. Did she learn a valuable lesson? Of course she didn’t. After what felt like a lot more than 12 laps she ploughed into the back of Toby’s kart. They were both OK, but Toby was furious with his sister!
I was relieved when the man called them in, and printed off their lap times. No surprise that Millie-Mae won the speed contest against Toby!
Would they do it again?
They did enjoy it, but the collision at the end has left them nervous of doing it again. They will – give it time. But I’m dreading them turning 17 and asking for driving lessons. They have a lot to learn first!
Hemsby Karting Centre is located on Beach Road in Hemsby. For more information please visit their Facebook page here.