By Kathi Bliss
Downtown Lockhart will be alive this weekend with the sights, smells and sounds of street racing at its finest, as the Texas Lone Star Grand Prix kart race returns for its second year in historic Lockhart.
Started in 2011 by kart racer Donnie Cluck, the Texas Lone Star Grand Prix has quickly grown to be known as one of the premier kart races in the nation. Drawing participants from across the United States and around the world, the LSGP was designed to attract new drivers and fans to the sport.
After its first two years in Dallas, the Texas Lone Star Grand Prix entered negotiations with the City of Lockhart to provide a home for the Texas Lone Star Grand Prix, a challenge that the leaders and citizens of Lockhart embraced wholeheartedly.
The free, family event starts on Friday as more than 150 racers from dozens of different states and at least six foreign countries move into Lockhart for the two-day Texas Lone Star Grand Prix. Drivers ranging in age from 7 to nearly 60 years old will zip their customized karts around Lockhart at speeds in excess of 100 miles per hour – less than two inches off the ground.
The inaugural race last year hit a few hitches according to some drivers, with the pavement being a bit too bumpy in places, and the spectators being a tad too close in others. However, the City of Lockhart has been working to address those issues, with new pavement poured on much of the race route, and fences and bleachers slated to be installed after 5 p.m. on Friday.
Downtown businesses and residents will see some inconvenience through the weekend, as most roads and side-streets surrounding the Caldwell County Courthouse Square will be closed to parking and traffic. However, permits have been made available by the City for residents who live in the area, and business owners have taken steps to make sure that patrons can find their way into the shops and eateries downtown.
Racing practice begins at 8 a.m. on Saturday, followed by qualifying and pre-final races from 1:15 – 6:25 p.m.
Sunday’s main event starts at 11 a.m., after a morning practice and an autograph session with the drivers from 10:30 – 11 a.m. Awards will be presented at 3 p.m., and drivers are expected to be out of the pit area by 8 p.m. on Sunday.
Traffic patterns will be restored to normal by 6 a.m. on Monday.
For additional information on the Texas Lone Star Grand Prix, visit www.lonestargrandprix.us.