K1 Speed: A “Crash Course”
The Poughkeepsie Galleria mall off of Route 9 seems, on the surface, like your average mall. There’s a food court, clothing and department stores, a puppy store, and even a Target. However, unlike most malls, the Galleria is home to a go-kart track known as K1 Speed, a brand that markets itself as “the premier karting company in America,” with additional locations in Canada and Mexico. They also take pride in being Eco-friendly, as their kart’s motors are completely electric. Drivers race against the clock, not each other, so everyone has an equal chance of winning. The Poughkeepsie location’s assistant manager, Bryce, spoke of his experiences working at K1 Speed while pop music blasted in the background, displaying K1 Speed’s appeal to a younger crowd: “We get all kinds of people, but our target market is probably millennials.”
“My favorite thing about working here is…probably the free races, I guess,” Bryce said with a laugh. But it’s not all fun and games (or races, rather.) There is also extensive training involved to learn safety precautions: “You have to learn how to safely run a race. You need people skills as well to be able to interact with customers, especially at certain parts of the day when we’re busier. It’s a lot of track training and stuff like that.”
In addition to being a place for high school and college kids to blow off some steam, K1 Speed also hosts events: “You have the option to rent out our Daytona Room, our party room, when you schedule a party. We do corporate events, birthday parties, bachelor parties, team building events, whatever kind of party you want!” In addition to the track, there’s also an arcade in the back with air hockey, basketball shooting games, and even a Jurassic Park simulator game.
The most common mistake people make on the track? “Not breaking,” said Bryce. “Definitely not breaking.”
There is nothing like K1 Speed in the Dutchess County area, so head to the Galleria, play some games, or maybe even become a record-breaking go-kart driver! Check out the photo gallery below for a closer look at K1 Speed!