Ethiopia is the trailblazer for Slalom Karting in Africa | Federation Internationale de l'Automobile

Ethiopia is the trailblazer for Slalom Karting in Africa

Ethiopia has been selected as the country that will run the pilot programme for the “Slalom Karting” project in Africa and this morning, a demonstration of the sport was put on, watched by participants in the second FIA African Sport Regional Congress
FIA, Motorsport, Mobility, Road Safety, F1, WRC, WEC, WTCC, World RX

It showed what can be done with limited space and resources, to create events that can attract people to grassroots motor sport. In fact the project allows FIA National Sporting Authorities (ASNs) that successfully apply to participate and receive a free karting ‘toolbox’ comprising two complete karts ready for use, 200 plastic cones, helmets, gloves and overalls, a guide to setting up the Karting Slalom, and the safety and sporting rules. “There are some new ASNs and regions around the world where FIA needs to help directly to kick start grassroots arrive-and-drive motorsport. Everybody with talent should be given an opportunity to try our sport.” – said Graham Stoker, FIA Deputy President for Sport – “Karting Slalom can deliver this, and we are offering a toolkit with karts, cones, helmets and suits, and technical support either for free or at reduced price to our developing ASNs.” The concept of the karting slalom event is simple and easy to put into place. 

The event requires only a small area of tarmac, such as a supermarket car park or a school.

“I am a firm believer in the potential of this programme and not just in terms of developing grassroots motorsport,” commented FIA President Jean Todt. “It will also teach people, especially youngsters, the basics of driving and safety aspects that can be transferred directly from racing to driving on public roads.”

A group of 50 people took part in the demonstration, which took place in a car park next to the hotel that hosted the Congress. Ethiopia has the second largest population of any African nation – around 90 million – and constitutes an ideal platform to relaunch motor sport on this continent. “Even though events like the Paris-Dakar race are no longer being held in the continent, the motivation and passion I see from FIA member states give me hope that a safe, renowned motor sport is possible” - said Todt, adding that the greater participation of member states including rising number of females can make FIA even stronger.