Building a Vette Kart for the Gambler 500 is a Great Idea

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Who would have known off-road tires actually look good on a Corvette?

We won’t blame you if you think this Corvette looks familiar. We’ve been regular followers of Cleetus McFarland and his Vette Kart, so seeing this one came as a bit of a surprise to us. But a good idea is a good idea, especially when you need a cheap but effective car for motorsport. Considering you can buy a wrecked one for pennies, and then race it in any way you want, it only makes sense to have this sort of unique resurgence of the C5 as the best performance bargain of all time.

For the guys behind B is for Build, a C5 Vette Kart was the perfect choice for the Gambler 500. An off-road rigorous test of machines that are either inexpensive, creative, or a combo of both. And, a party at the same time as well. As such, this Vette Kart has some mudder tires slapped on it as its main showpiece, rather than an enormous engine with top mount turbos.

gambler 500 vette kart

We join the build in progress as the roll cage is being prepped. Obviously being exposed to inclement weather is no good for raw metal, so painting the roll cage is a must. A metallic black was chosen to make it look more pretty, but almost too pretty considering what the Gambler 500 is all about. Lighting was important, too, and so two gigantic LED light bars that could double for an aircraft’s landing approach lights were fitted to the front bumper and the top roll bar.

As opposed to Leroy, this Vette Kart is still fully street legal, as per the Gambler 500 rules. In fact their rule book is quite simple. “Fun > rules.” It sets a precedent that the event is more about having a blast, rather than winning. We can’t wait to see how it turns out for B is for Build.

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Patrick Morgan is an instructor at Chicago's Autobahn Country Club and contributes to a number of Auto sites, including MB World and 6SpeedOnline.

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