High Caliber Karting and Entertainment was founded by three fun-loving and business-minded friends that saw a shift in the demand in the entertainment industry and a reduction in the barriers to entry; however, our story goes far beyond opportunity and business acumen. Our driving passions are rooted in experiencing life with passion, excellence, and excitement. Our objective is to ingrain those values into every interaction with customers, employees, businesses, and vendors. We believe every day should begin with excitement and determination.
We pride ourselves in taking something that is already exciting to the next level. The core of our shared experiences began inside a retail business. The founder’s relationship began through the most unique and exciting outings and sales events known to this Fortune 500 company. Our passion for the performance industry and attention to detail made instant customer connections. We quickly built a strong, loyal team and a loyal group of customers and employees who we cherished as family. Nearly a decade later, many of those employees and customers are still people we embrace with an uncomfortably long hug when we cross paths. We are extremely excited to offer that same lifestyle to you. (Bring it in for a hug)
These interactions are exactly how the brains behind the technology, Kevin Biesbrock, came into the picture. Kevin had an affection for the performance market as well and, along with being literally the kindest and most encouraging individual you will ever meet, blended with us like we were born of the same blood. After one interaction as a customer, I invited him to a local indoor kart track. We bonded over the enthralling idea that a business could exist to offer their customer base such an awesome experience. It would be almost a decade until the concept would come together that brought all three of us into a common goal and began the journey that is High Caliber Karting and Entertainment.
Over the next decade, we spent hours discussing, dreaming, and planning the direction of our entrepreneurship. The idea of opening a karting facility seemed almost unattainable. With passion and immense work ethic, we set our sights on other means of gaining the stability, skills, and funding necessary to enter the market. Every challenge, finding either success or failure, brought us closer to the beginning of our dream. Perpetual learning is a core foundation of a great enterprise. We worked relentlessly, honing our skills to become the greatest asset to one another.
Our opportunities to test ideas evolved when I attained some property where we could build a race track. The track was far from professional but allowed us to test our concepts and dreams in real life. With a Barbie Jeep strapped to a wooden table and pulled by “Old Brown”, a worn-out farm truck, we dragged lanes through the brush. Later, after hundreds of hours building jumps, berms, and transitions with “big boy” equipment, we had our first race track. Though far from professional, it allowed us to test concepts in real life. Every moment we spent testing concepts was heaven–we knew we were heading in the right direction.
Our dreams were a wide cast net. We had ambitions of kart manufacturing, professional racing, extreme off-roading, and venue operations; ultimately, we knew we just needed to start somewhere. We began by developing a small off-road machine, equipped for the rigors of our new track, dubbed “The Community Kart”. The Community Kart offered a chance to understand the inner workings, failure points, and stability needs of a hard-use environment. We broke it multiple times a day and continually improved the design. The Community Kart brought about major events–with as many as 50 attendees posting individual lap times onto a growing leaderboard. We began offering driving instructions and pushed the attendees to cut their lap times drastically. The leaderboard lap times grew tighter and tighter as both passion for competition and smiles grew–we knew we were on the right path.
Soon after the initial design was holding up strong, we started the next project of design and development, including, obviously, our propensity to bring already-extreme things to a whole different level. The next build came after about a year of development and was dubbed The GSXR Kart. The GSXR Kart pushed our limits of engineering–with over 120 HP and capable of over 17,000 RPMs reaching 0-60 in under 3 seconds and top speeds over 140 MPH. We had created a monster that was both terrifying and fun but not recommended for commercial use.
These builds were a great way to develop a better understanding of the mechanics for high-performance karting. We pushed the envelope further and further every day. Ultimately, we realized that commercializing these prototypes would prove to be challenging, not to mention outright dangerous. Our focus was far too broad. We needed to focus on what our offering would ultimately be. After significant study and consult, we decided that kart manufacturing was best left to the experienced hands in the industry and we would adapt appropriately.
In the Spring of 2017, we developed a business plan to open a kart track. The next several months we traveled all around the United States visiting professional karting venues with different operating models. We were able to go into a facility and learn about their strengths and weaknesses. Each location gave us a chance to answer the question “What can we do to bring a better experience to our customers?” We began to identify the strongest partners in the industry that had a common vision of providing the absolute best experience. Manufacturers, vendors, and distributors from all around the globe aligned with our vision to create a new, unparalleled entertainment offering.
Each location started to blur together so detailed notes were necessary to differentiate between them. It made us realize, the whole industry is the same. Every facility we went into had the same decorations, same gaming offerings, same food, same drink. It seemed as though there was a Pinterest track recipe our competition was following. Every venue seemed more focused on getting the customers money, rather than providing the absolute best atmosphere and experience for the participants. Our vision became clear. We needed to design a facility not only more engaging but of a “higher caliber” than the cookie cutter model. So began the punishingly late nights and long weekends that go into planning and preparing for a startup business.
The next few months became a whirlwind of identifying products, layouts, merchandise, and experiences. We partnered with the best companies and the highest quality products on the market in order to bring our service offerings to a higher level. While many owners were focusing on how to sell more chips, our team focused on getting the absolute best experience designed for every customer. We searched for the newest and fastest karts and studied the best performing tire compounds and track materials to bring you the highest g-forces and top speeds in the industry.
During our business development phase, we discovered a new technology that presented another experience we could bring to our customers. Through the growth of eSports, we see the potential in simulated racing to help grow our brand. The 6-hour time difference between us and eSports vendors added another layer of complexity to the mix. We were able to create partnerships with the top vendors in the world to provide the most interactive virtual racing experience.
As we continued towards our grand opening, we learned about new attractions and exciting products. Axe Throwing, Pocket Soccer, Rage Rooms, became “must haves” in our space. As we grow and grow, a core pillar to our company is always offering the latest and greatest and finding ways to make it better than anywhere else. This is such an important part of our business, we even develop our own immersive technology. Learn a little more about that here: www.combatkarting.com.
Our efforts do not stop there. With the karting operations growing closer to reality, our focus has turned to new technologies and experiences that will redefine the karting industry entirely. Through international partnerships and maniacal determination, High Caliber Karting and Entertainment will allow you to experience racing like never before and bring the most out of yourself behind the wheel. Whether you are a customer, an employee, or a business partner our goal is to give everyone an unforgettable experience.
– Team High Caliber