Ocean City Today

Speed through new ProTrack at Grand Prix Amusements

By Kara Hallissey | Jul 20, 2017
Photo by: Kara Hallissey General Manager Valerie Kramer shows off the Sodi RX8 go-karts at the ProTrack, which have adjustable seats and peddles to make the ride more comfortable in addition to reaching speeds of more than 30 miles per hour at Grand Prix Amusements on Route 50 in West Ocean City.

(July 21, 2017) Reaching speeds of more than 30 miles per hour to claim the fastest time of the summer awaits drivers at the ProTrack at Grand Prix Amusements on Route 50 in West Ocean City.

“We wanted to bring a real racing experience to Ocean City,” said Valerie Kramer, general manager. “Concession cars are fun for the family. On the ProTrack, you wear helmets and we use flags just like professional racing. There is a safety briefing before the race and the object is to get the top time.”

The six-minute ride through hairpin and challenging turns has riders gliding around the track 12 to 14 times depending on how fast they are going.

“We felt this racing experience was missing in Ocean City,” Kramer said. “Up to eight go-karts can race together at once. We do start them at about a two-second gap, but they are not alone on the track.”

A timing system keeps track of every lap raced and can break down the fastest times by the year, month, week and day. Races can be printed out as a vacation memento and are catalogued in the system.

“You are essentially racing for the best time of the summer,” Kramer said. “The timing system keeps track of every lap that has ever been raced.”

All drivers must be at least 16 years old, 58 inches tall and sign a release and waiver. Participants are required to have identification and wear closed-toe shoes. Those under 16 years of age must have their parents sign the release and waiver.

“It’s Ocean City’s only racing experience,” Kramer said. “We let you race and if another driver is holding you up, we flag them to allow you to pass. We encourage people to let others pass, but people will start going faster when a car is behind them and it usually makes them want to go faster after seeing the passing flags.”

The Sodi RX8 go-karts have adjustable seats and pedals to make the ride more comfortable.

“With each lap you go faster as you get used to the track and get comfortable with the car,” Kramer said. “You can’t drive full speed around the entire lap. It is something you can’t experience anywhere else in Ocean City.”

Helmets and head socks are provided for riders. First-time ProTrack racers are required to watch a safety briefing and create an account to make the process faster for future visits.

“Our cars are gas and you feel and hear it with each lap,” Kramer said. “You get in there and become a race car driver with the flags, track and barriers. The track is challenging and it’s a real racing experience.”

Last November, employees discovered the Sodi go-karts while attending the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions Conference and Trade Show in Orlando. By June, the ProTrack was open to the public for racing.

“It is fun and exciting to be a part of and help create [the track], Kramer said. “We transitioned the track in three days. Put the barriers up. After seeing the track design, I knew it would give this great experience and you don’t get the full experience until you race.”

One race costs $22. Group pricing is available. Currently, the ProTrack is offering a special where customers can purchase 10 races for $150, and they never expire.

“We are thinking of expanding the track for next season,” Kramer said.

There are military discounts available and reduced pricing for customers with wristbands from other Grand Prix and Baja Amusement Parks.

ProTrack is located at 12424 Ocean Gateway, which is at Grand Prix Amusements on Route 50 across from Waterman’s Seafood in West Ocean City. During the summer, ProTrack is open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Check out www.protrackoc.com or call 443-944-7173 for more information.

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