How We Got Started
"It started with a random idea..."
TANDA Racing started almost entirely by accident when our owner Trei Smith decided it would be fun to get back into kart racing. Trei reached out to his long time friend Cameron Carter who was a former Drac Kart importer and winning kart driver during the 1990's. The two found a race kart for sale through craigslist and made a trip out to Arizona to pick up a used Tony Kart with a KT100 motor. When they got back Angel Burke (Trei's Fiancée and co-founder) thought it would be really fun to try kart racing. So a second trip was made to NTK at Denton, TX to pick up another Tony Kart with a KT100 motor.
With two karts the team was formed. Naming the team was the easy part Trei AND Angel were going Racing... TANDA Racing was born!.
"The more things change, the more they stay the same..."
Trei and Angel went out a few times to practice, but it had been so long since Cameron or Trei had raced that none of them knew where to really start. What classes can you run? What series can you run? How much time do you commit? How much money do you have to spend? It seemed to be really easy to start with a local track where they had some contacts. After testing the karts they came to the realization that the two chassis while reasonably modern were far from competitive. What would make them more competitive? Would it be easier to buy new karts and get support?
It became clear that the older Tony Karts would not be competitive. Racing can be very cutthroat, but the team began seeking information from people they believed would know what equipment was competitive. However, one thing had not changed, people were not very truthful about competitive racing chassis, engines or setups. The team tried asking around on the internet and got lots of conflicting data. So they decided to find the most under represented kart manufactures in the US and sent out requests for information on what they had to offer.
"Long wait, big payoff..."
After a few months several kart manufacturers had contacted the team, but one stood out above the others. The Czech kart company PRAGA Motors contacted Trei via email that lead to a phone call from the North American importer. An offer to go to test the chassis was presented and with very little hesitation the team headed to Homestead, FL. Bad weather didn't allow for much testing, but Cameron took photos and they all gathered data from all the time spent with the PRAGA mechanics and the little seat time they did get and headed home to make a decision.
With new reliable info in front of them they made the commitment to not only run the PRAGA chassis, but to also go all in and become an official dealer. "It didn't seem real until the freight truck pulled up and dropped off the first order of chassis" - Trei.
"Putting it all together..."
Over the 2014 season Cameron, Trei and Angel found quality people to ally with and increase the team's ranks. Almost everyone had similar experiences to how they were treated when starting out, siting misinformation from racers and kart dealers, shoddy engine builders, broken promises to provide setup assistance, even equipment being passed off as new when it could be over 10 yrs old.
TANDA Racing decided in the very beginning that we would operate with integrity. TANDA decided to make any information we learned about our products available to any customer or PRAGA kart owner. Members of the TANDA Racing team are required to operate within the rules of the various karting associations that they are members of. Most of all, TANDA Racing will promote the sport of racing by assisting parents with kid drivers and support adult drivers who are operating on very tight budgets.
We at TANDA Racing welcome our customers to our family. If you have questions, need support or just want to join our family at some great races... the door is open, come join us in the sport we love!