THE CLOSEST thing to Formula 1 is coming to Limerick.
Last February the National Karting and Adventure Centre became Europe’s first drift karting (cars cornering sideways) facility.
Now they are to expand their current track to 1kms in length making it one of the largest indoor tracks in Europe.
Located in the old Burlington factory near Corbally, proprietor, Colm Wright says they have sought inspiration from other Formula 1 tracks like Monza, Monaco and Barcelona.
“We looked at the layout of all the Formula 1 circuits and took ideas in completing our design. We want to provide our customers with the ultimate driving experience.
“There will be some new features which will provide excitement and an experience close to driving on a real Formula 1 circuit,” said Mr Wright.
As well as being an opportunity for budding Lewis Hamiltons, Sebastien Vettels and Michael Schumachers to test their driving skills, jobs will also be created in the process.
“With the expansion we are delighted to create more jobs through the building programme, hiring of both full-time and part-time staff to cater for the expanded services being offered. Over the next 12 months we envisage that five to 10 part time and seasonal staff and three full-time staff will hired,” said Mr Wright.
Other businesses are also benefiting from the expansion of the National Karting and Adventure Centre, which was only opened two years ago.
The venue attracts a lot of stag and corporate parties from all over the country and have regulars travelling from Waterford every weekend,
“They stay in hotels so it is boosting the local economy as well. Everything we do is local,” said Mr Wright.
*For a full version of this story see the weekend edition of the Limerick Leader newspaper.