All the schools listed on this web site are members of the Association of Racing Kart Schools (ARKS) recognised by the MotorSport UK. The organisation is responsible for the now mandatory ARKS tests and also administers Club Examiners. The test costs up to £98.00 including VAT if applicable, but not including any hire fee for a kart. You will find that all of these schools can offer a professional and high standard of tuition, whether you are a complete novice or an experienced driver wishing to improve. If you should fail one part of the ARKS Test, the Written Test can be re-taken for £50 and the Driving Test for £60 (costs may vary from 1st July 2023 and may be less).
If you plan to take the test at a kart school or club please pay them direct. The list for Examines is downloadable from this page, near the bottom). Check the club’s website for details or contact the Examiner. Any vouchers already purchased from the previous payment system will be honoured, and the club will give a refund if the test fee is less. Remember the fee does not cover any cost of hire of a kart or PPE, or the practice day fee.
There are some exemptions for drivers who have had a National A licence before, or have enough signatures from Tyro/Clubman/NatSKA/Super K-X events and in some cases these people only need to sit the Written Test. Check with the Motorsport UK or ARKS to see if that might affect you and whether you also need to purchase the Start Karting pack which costs £69 from www.motorsportuk.org and includes the cost of the first licence(s).
Drivers from 6 years of age will have the chance to race at approved circuits, specifically licensed for Bambino racing, if they purchase the Go Karting starter pack and take and satisfactorily complete the ARKS Novice Driver Test. Drivers will then apply for the Kart Interclub (Bambino) licence, see Blue Book U1.7.1.
Race regulations must state that the format will be for timed qualifying and standing starts, to set the grids for the heats. Kart Teams are specifically prohibited from involved in any Motorsport UK Bambino event, whether Time Trial or Racing.
It is still possible to obtain a Kart Clubman (Bambino) licence for Bambino Time Trials, follow the training schedule (see Bambino Kart Training and Event Guidelines (motorsportuk.org) ) and enclosing the signed off Bambino Record card in with the licence application form (downloaded from the www.motorsportuk.org website).
Please note the training video that is referenced from a QR code in the Pack is now available on the Video page of this website here. This helps new drivers to learn what is required for the test. A training record card and details of the training are on the Resources section of the MotorsportUK website or as below. Note that a Bambino driver must have taken the full test and bought the Pack to upgrade to a Cadet licence.
A driver in the calendar year of their 8th birthday who has satisfactorily completed at least 3 Motorsport UK Bambino races (not time trial) may move in to the cadet category if they are at least 125cm in height. They must exchange their licence for a normal Interclub licence and become a novice.
Alternatively if they have signatures from at least three time trials and have passed the ARKS test a driver can apply to move to Cadets in the calendar year of their 8th birthday. The licence application must be endorsed and submitted by a recognised kart club and any licence would be restricted to a single venue until the driver has either reached their 8th birthday or been specifically observed by the Motorsport UK Steward at a minimum of three Interclub Kart races (U.22.214.171.124).
To complement the MotorsportUK Start Karting pack ARKS provide some useful guidance notes, which novices are encouraged to download and read thoroughly, these are:
Many also run their own race teams, offering anything from complete arrive-and-drive to just supplying a mechanic to help you out. Parents are encourage to read through the safeguarding guidelines and for choosing a team here.
You could also take the ARKS Novice Driver Test at many of the ABkC clubs, here is the list of Examiners at Kart Clubs. However they may not be able to arrange for a hire kart.
View the ‘How to Start Kart Racing‘ brochure below but note it is slightly out of date, the new from 2023 Intermediate class superseding Mini. If you contact the ARKS office we will be able to get a brochure shipped to yourself.
ARKS is the only kart school body recognised by the Motorsport UK. ARKS Ltd holds Public Liability and Professional Indemnity insurance with Sports-Insure. The administrator is registered with the ICO under the Data Protection Act