Kalì Kart: the story of Calogero Vanaria comes alive on the track

Columns: Stories
The return of the Kali Kart brand to the international racing scene – such as WSK events and soon FIA Karting – has generated a lot of interest and curiosity among people of karting, being perceived by many drivers as a novelty for the CRG group. However, Kalì Kart is much more than that…

For quite some time, the brand was not active with an official team, and it is noteworthy that the new generations find it challenging to connect it with prestigious names from karting's past like Michael Schumacher, Alex Zanardi, or Mike Wilson. However, the Kali Kart brand, like Tony and Birel, has played a role in shaping karting history since the early '60s, accumulating a significant record of sporting and commercial successes. For those who did not experience those years firsthand, let's try to revisit the key milestones of this historic brand.
The company was founded in Lonato del Garda by Calogero Vanaria at the end of the '50s, initially as a small artisanal production of chassis within his own car workshop and later evolving into a more organized company with a spare parts warehouse and a network of dealers. Vanaria (known as Kalì), born in Sant'Agata di Militello in 1932, at the age of 22, moved to Lonato del Garda, where he would spend his entire life dedicated to engines and his great passion for go-karts.
The love for karting sparked almost by chance in 1958 when he watched a race as a spectator on the street circuit of Brescia at ‘Piazza della Vittoria’. The decision to buy a kart was immediate, as was the decision to participate in his first race on the Castiglione delle Stiviere circuit, marking the beginning of his journey into the world of karting: a journey in which he achieved success as a driver, event organizer, and chassis manufacturer. As a manufacturer, he introduced many innovations, especially concerning the mass production of chassis and spare parts, providing an innovative service to his customers for the time. From a sporting perspective, Vanaria understood that races could be an important promotional vehicle for his chassis, so he involved his son Giancarlo as a driver and structured the racing team to participate in the most significant events in Europe. Kalì Kart's activity continued successfully until the '90s, with drivers of the caliber of Michael Schumacher, Alex Zanardi, Gabriele Tarquini, and Mike Wilson. The history of Kalì Kart became the history of karting, a sport that grew exponentially between the '60s and '80s, becoming a mandatory step for all drivers aspiring to enter motorsports. Kalì Kart won a total of 10 world titles, the first with Gabriele Tarquini in 1984, in addition to 16 international titles and numerous national championships. In 1986, the Kalì Kart brand was incorporated into the emerging CRG, founded by Calogero Vanaria's sons (Giancarlo and Roberto) and Giancarlo Tinini, who married Marina Vanaria, Calogero's daughter.

Today, the range of Kalì Kart go-karts is produced within the technological hub of over 12,000 square meters at the Tinini Group in Lonato del Garda. It combines quality and design, respecting its tradition and the founder's philosophy, who always looked to the future and embraced new technological and sporting challenges. Since the beginning of 2024, CRG has initiated many initiatives to relaunch a brand with an extraordinary history, which will be managed by the internal marketing structure of the Italian company.

For more information on Kali Kart products and programs, you can contact CRG marketing at: crg@kartcrg.com

Created by: fmarangon2 - 01/02/24

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