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15 March, 2021

Karts turned into an educational tool

A partnership between the Weipa Dirt Kart Club and Western Cape College will turn into a win-win for both the club and students.

The club has purchased seven new karts that will be built by students and then used for racing.

Western Cape College teacher Michael “Kimba” Brooker said it was a great way to teach students practical skills and help the local dirt kart club.

“They are four-stroke karts, so not as fast as most of the karts used by club members, but they still need to be put together and serviced,” he said.

“There will be opportunities for students to make trailers and stands for the karts, as well as design stickers to go on the sides.”

Western Cape College principal Peter Linnehan said having a qualified mechanic on the staff was a coup for the school and that allowed the college to go ahead with the program.

“We’re still deciding which age groups to target but we think we might try with some of the younger students,” he said.

“This type of thing just isn’t offered at many other schools.”

Outgoing Weipa Dirt Kart Club president Derek Mowles said the idea was born in remote Western Australia and the club had tried for many years to get the program up and running in Weipa.

“We were lucky to get $35,000 from the state government for the karts and $10,000 from Rio Tinto Weipa’s Community Development Fund for other equipment, including safety gear.”

The Weipa Bowls Club covered the cost of the freight.

Mr Brooker said one kart came assembled as a demonstration, but the other six would need to be put together by students.

“It should be a real incentive for these kids to come to school and take an interest,” he said.

“Building something like a kart from scratch can be a source of pride and hopefully they then get the chance to go around the track on them.

“It’s a great partnership.”

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