With $10,000 Hanging in the Balance, Two Xtreme E-Kart League Pros Prepare to Face off | Xtreme Racing & Entertainment

Xtreme has always prided itself on being one of the top fun things to do in Tulsa, and while our E-Karts are fast, they’re also accessible to practically anyone with a need for speed.

 That being said…  there are racers who set themselves apart, taking E-Kart racing from the realm of recreation to the professionally competitive.

For the past four years, Xtreme has brought these racers together in the Xtreme Racing League. Practicing, tracking their scores, and strategizing ways to shave seconds off their times – these dedicated drivers are part of a growing group of racers around the country that take their E-kart racing very seriously.

One such racer, Matt Shinn (or “Shinny” as the other racers affectionately call him), came from the world of drift driving, but found something unique he loved about E-Karts at Xtreme.

Shinny’s father raced motorcycles, so he had somewhat of a high-octane childhood. He says his family even jokes about him: “Most babies kick, but I just pushed with my feet. My parents say I was practicing putting the pedal to the metal before I was even born!”

Seemingly obsessed with racing since he was in utero, Matt spent every moment he could focusing on and practicing his skill. When he moved and started looking for fun things to do in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma… that was when her first set foot in Xtreme.

Originally just wanting to try his hand at the high-speed Go Karts, Shinny met Brandon Dixon, the founder of the Xtreme E-Kart Racing League. Despite being mostly into competition drifting at the time, Matt decided to test his skills on Xtreme’s E-Kart tracks, and was surprised by what he found:

From that moment on, Shinny was an E-Kart enthusiast, going on to win the last three Xtreme Racing League Championships.

But beyond just Xtreme, E-Kart Racing is rising in popularity nationwide amongst pro racers. For the last two years, the American E-Kart Championship (AEKC) nationals have offered $10,000 to the top E-Kart racer in America, determining the winner from various statewide leagues in a final face-off in Chicago.

Shinny represented Xtreme in Chicago last year, but he didn’t come out on top… and even though he took third place nationally and won $1000… it’s a loss he doesn’t intend to repeat if he’s the league winner again this year. However, this time around, his local competition for Xtreme Racing League Champion just got a lot steeper.

The first time Koby Phipps ever set a track record in a 10-person E-Kart race, he was twelve years old. A former Xtreme employee, he quit to take E-Kart Racing more seriously, because AEKC regulations stipulate national competitors can’t be employees of the places where they race. To him, it was just that important.

Racing alongside Matt Shinn, Koby only further sharpened his racing skill as he matured, and the two became friends. Shinny became a kind of racing mentor for Koby, and they share fond memories of running to the monitor to compare their stats after every league race. No matter who won or broke a record, it was the whole league who celebrated.

Koby was learning from the best and getting better every year, placing second in the second year of the Xtreme League, but the more experienced Shinny always came out ahead… that is, until this year.

For the first time ever, Koby has a solid lead in the League scores, and a real chance of winning the opportunity to be Xtreme’s representative at the AEKC in Chicago.

With one more critical race to go on Sunday, July 28th after Xtreme’s massive “Race Through the Ages” celebration (a motorsports vehicle showcase with real drift cars, autocross cars, motorcycles, Harley’s Angels girls, food trucks, and more), the young prodigy and the old expert are ready to see if the student really has become the master.  

Though even with all their history and $10,000 potentially on the line, Shinny and Koby remain light-hearted friends. This is about fun, in the end, after all.

“If he beats me this time,” Koby said while nudging Shinny, “he’d better go win in Chicago!”

“It’ll be a handshake and good job and maybe some advice about Chicago,” Shinny said when asked about how he would react if Koby defeated him in the Championship race. Then he added with a smile: “But we’ll see. There’s still one race left.”

To learn more about “Race Through the Ages” click here, and if you’re interested in learning about how you can join the Xtreme racing league, contact Brandon Dixon at brandon@xtremetulsa.com.