How Long Does Go-Karting Take? (Understanding The Time Differences)

From casual sessions to professional races, learn how long go-karting takes with our in-depth guide on the subject.
how long does go-karting take really

Are you karting for the first time but need to know how long does go-karting take?

A casual indoor go-kart race can last around 8-10 minutes. Professional outdoor races can last between 15 minutes to 24 hours, while a single-session run may last around 10 minutes.

In this article, we’ll discuss how long it takes to complete a professional go-kart race or a casual go-karting session. We’ll also cover the various factors that determine the length of go-karting on average.

Unlocking The Duration Of Go-Kart Racing

Go-karting is one of America’s favorite pastimes and a beloved professional sport. But if you’re a first-timer, you might wonder how long go-karting takes.

That depends on whether you’re talking about a friendly go-karting session at your local track or a professional go-karting race event.

In essence, this is how long go-karting can last across the board:

  • Go-karting tracks and arenas may offer 5-10 minute long causal sessions, depending on how much they charge.
  • Professional outdoor go-kart racing can take 15 minutes to 24 hours, depending on the racing format.
  • Indoor go-kart races might last 8-10 minutes, depending on the track.

Factors That Determine The Duration Of Go-Karting

Track Type And Size

Go-karting tracks come in all shapes and sizes; it’s how they keep things new and exciting! You’ll probably finish a lap in a small, simple track within 1 minute. But a master track with several twists, turns, and obstacles? That’s going to take a bit longer.

An average-sized go-kart track is approximately 1100 to 1200 meters long and 7 to 9 meters wide. That’s not even 1 mile. Even the slowest go-karts can drive at least 9 mph, with the fastest ones going as fast as 150mph. 

This means you can drive around the entire track in less than 1 minute.

Race Format And Number Of Participants

There are three variations to go-kart racing; endurance, sprint, and speedway racing. Endurance racing takes place in some of the longest race tracks, around 1.5 to 4 miles in size. 

Two racers compete with each in this epic showdown. The whole thing can be over within 30 minutes or a whopping 24 hours. 

Sprint racing is a unique variant that takes place on specific 1/4 to 1-mile-long circuits. There are multiple racers who duke it out over a series of short races with minimum laps. It only lasts for a short period because of the 15-minute time limit. 

Finally, speedway racing has 1/10 to 1/4 mile-long oval tracks with four turning corners and two straight ones.

They have multiple participants, and races can range between 4 to 20 laps. 

The duration of the race could range from 8 to 40 minutes, depending on the length of each lap (assuming each lap takes approximately 2 minutes to complete).

However, this figure is more on the ‘longer’ side. 

Go-Karting Rules And Regulations

Different go-karting events may have different rules and regulations. These may often change how long or how short a race can be. A race with 50 laps would take approximately 2 and a half hours.

Meanwhile, a shorter race of 20 laps should last roughly an hour, more or less. We also have to factor in the different rules and regulations, all of which could increase or decrease the overall duration.

How Long Do Go-Kart Races Take On Average 

Indoor Vs. Outdoor Tracks

Indoor tracks are generally shorter than outdoor tracks. This automatically makes indoor races shorter than outdoor ones. 

For the sake of example, let’s say we have a massive indoor race track of 70,000 Sq.ft. 

That’s about 1/3 miles, or maybe slightly more than that.  Let’s say the track has around 20 challenging turns, all of which will definitely slow you down. Additionally, the course requires the completion of 10 laps.

How long would it take to finish?

According to our calculations, finishing each lap should take around 45 seconds to 1 minute. So, that should total amount to 8-10 minutes, assuming you have to finish 8 to 10 laps. On the other hand, races with outdoor tracks typically take longer to finish. 

Depending on the race format, it would take anywhere between 15 minutes to 24 hours to finish an outdoor race track.

Typical Go-Karting Session

Go-karting sessions, unlike races, have nothing to do with competition. 

It’s just you and your friends having a fantastic time on the track; pure thrill! How long a go-karting session lasts depends from place to place.

Venues with smaller tracks may offer 5, 10, and 15-minute sessions, while bigger tracks may offer up to 60-minute sessions.

Tips For Making The Most Of Your Go Karting Experience

You don’t need to be well-trained to enjoy an epic day of go-karting; it’s all about instincts! However, we do agree that a few tips can greatly improve your go-karting experience. So let’s discuss some of them. 

Remember, you’re go-karting adventure starts in the waiting line, which can be quite long on a busy day. So make sure you arrive early to avoid waiting in line for hours on end!

Also, don’t try to participate in back-to-back races, especially if you’re a beginner. Relax, take your time; the race track isn’t going anywhere.

And, of course, following the rules is an absolute must, no question about it. Following go-karting rules helps ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all participants. 

So don’t try to be Speed Racer on the race track; you’ll end up getting hurt or hurting those around you.

Final Thoughts

The next time someone asks you, ‘how long does go-karting take?’, tell them it’s complicated!

A casual session on an indoor track might take 8-10 minutes, while professional outdoor races vary from format to format. Endurance races may go on for 30 minutes, up to 24 hours, while sprint races usually take 15 minutes.

Finally, speedway races of around 20 laps may take 20 minutes if you can finish each lap in under 1 minute. Assuming you’re a newbie who will take 2 minutes per lap, it could stretch into 40 minutes.



Meet Charles, a passionate writer and avid go-kart enthusiast. With a background in motorsports, Charles brings a unique perspective to the world of go-karting and motorsports. When Charles is not behind the wheel, you can find him crafting compelling stories and informative articles on the latest trends and technology on the PK's Go-Karts blog here.