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Owner of East Lansing Kart Track passes away

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Owner of East Lansing Kart Track passes away

Postby Sean r/t » Tue Dec 04, 2012 12:05 pm

East Lansing Kart track is a very special venue to me, as it's where I learned nearly everything I know about racing. My successes this season wouldn't have happened AT ALL had it not been for Bobby Haun and the East Lansing Kart Track. Bobby helped me personally nearly fifteen years ago at the ELKT drivers school, and tought me valuable lessons that I still remember today. Bobby gave kids and adults the oppourtunity to race wheel to wheel at a reasonable cost, and kept the track open each and every year, despite being hit hard by the economic downturn. I doubt this track turned a profit the last five years, but Bobby did everything he could to make sure kids were able to keep racing. While I only made it out to race once in 2012, and twice in 2011, I was always greeted with open arms by Bobby and the ELKT staff whenever I returned. Bobby never forgot his racers, even after not seeing them for 5+ years.

Bobby attended the PRI show in Orlando this past weekend, and was struck by a truck while walking on the shoulder of the road. Probably the worst news I've heard all year. I'm not sure too many Waterford drivers came from Kart Racing, but for any that did, I'm sure you're aware of ELKT, and Bobby Haun.


I'll likely be at the services this Saturday:
Sean Grogan
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Re: Owner of East Lansing Kart Track passes away

Postby rallaer » Wed Dec 05, 2012 5:42 am

Wow. Thanks for the notice Sean. I knew him as well. I would take my boys there to practice on weekdays, and he was always so helpful and so nice. This is incredibly awful news. I feel so bad for his family. He was a terrific guy. Thanks again for posting this, I would have missed this completely.
Rob Allaer
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Re: Owner of East Lansing Kart Track passes away

Postby Jim Bambard » Wed Dec 05, 2012 2:08 pm

The Karting world has truly lost a friend. My son and I raced ELKT together for several years and my son was a multiple track champ as a result of time spent with Bobby. The ELKT gave more to us than we could ever give back. Bobby truly lived for the sport and was always willing to help and teach. Words can not express the sadness we feel. My heart felt sympathies go out to his family. He will be missed.
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Re: Owner of East Lansing Kart Track passes away

Postby Sean r/t » Sat Dec 08, 2012 5:14 pm

The services for Bobby today were perhaps the saddest thing I've ever been a part of. I barely knew Bobby, but what I learned about him today sure didn't make any of this any easier. Bobby was a devout Christian, and a proud all around family man. For those who lost a close friend, an uncle, a brother, a son, a husband, or a father...I can't even begin to imagine carrying on with life after something this tragic happening.

I remember doing the driving school as a kid with Bobby and his brother Kevin standing on the track as I did lap after lap. They would stand ON the track pointing to their feet indicating where the apex was that I was missing, until I got it right, and then they'd run to the next corner until I got it perfected. It really bothers me that someone who spent a good portion of their life teaching kids how to drive and race, has it all come to end because of a bad driver.

The East Lansing Kart Track should still be in operation next year, and I plan to dust off the old Birel and Yamaha two-cycle to race in memory of Bobby and everything he did to help develop the skills I have today. Anyone who still has their old karting equipment I'd urge you to do the same.

The services ended playing Bobby's favorite song while showing a picture of Bobby in his drivers suit sitting up against the Kart trailer just before a race, listining to his head phones, eyes closed, in the zone, listening to this same song in which he played each time before competition.
RIP Robert Haun Kart #14
5/15/66 -12/2/12
Sean Grogan
-#37 Yellow/Red Spec Neon
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Re: Owner of East Lansing Kart Track passes away

Postby Mark_Silverberg » Sat Dec 08, 2012 7:22 pm

EKLT is a great place to race and perhaps even a better place to practice. They have open practice on fridays and saturdays from April to October. If you are there on friday at 10 AM opening you often will have the track to your self for at least 3 hours. Besides a strong yamaha class there is also a growing 4 stroke class using the chinese knock offs (clone) of the Honda GX200 engine. You can typically find ready to race clone karts for between $1200 and $1800

Bob Haun will be greatly missed and was a good friend to all. Nothing would make the family happier than to see a strong turn out at the track this year.
Mark Silverberg
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Re: Owner of East Lansing Kart Track passes away

Postby The_Pipefather » Wed Dec 12, 2012 3:54 pm

I come from karting as well, and ELKT was the place I went to the most, because of its location, price and atmosphere. The track is extremely tight and challenging, certainly the Waterford of kart tracks in a manner of speaking. There have been one or two years where I did about 15 weekends in one season, and Bobby was a pleasure to hang out with on all of those weekends. He never had the commercial mentality that most vendors in karting do, and had made a lot of positive changes to the track, including a much-needed re-paving, beginning last year. If there is a memorial race I will try my level best to be there in my now-retired Rotax.
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