WAMPUM, Pa. – The World Karting Association is mourning the passing of District 5 Trustee Will Frank, who lost his battle with cancer early this morning, May 3, at his home in Nashville, Tennessee.
Will was a lifelong karter who devoted his life to the sport. A throwback racer, Frank and his Blue Ribbon Racing team supported many forms of karting, including dirt, sprint and road racing – both 2-cycle and 4-cycle. The most recent example of this was at WKA’s Daytona KartWeek in December, where Frank’s team had racers competing at the Dirt World Championships and Road Racing Daytona Championships in both 2- and 4-cycle divisions.
Last summer, Frank boosted local interest in the WKA Road Racing Grand Nationals at VIRginia International Raceway as the center of a heartfelt program that involved bringing local youths to the event as competitors and crewmembers.
Frank worked with Halifax (Va.) County Motorsports Academy instructors and hauled a Briggs Animal-powered sprint-enduro to VIR for Harrison Walker, a student in the Halifax County Middle School Karting Program, a facet of the Motorsports Academy, to drive. Three other students worked as crewmembers at the direction of Frank and his team.
In an appropriate conclusion of the touching story, Walker drove Frank’s kart to victory in one of the Animal Jr Sprint mains at VIR; Walker continues to race in the National Road Racing Series in 2012.
In addition to his Road Racing involvement, over the last year Frank worked tirelessly to try to restore the glory of WKA’s Speedway Dirt program. Will spent hundreds of hours on the phone with dirt karting industry members on behalf of WKA, traveled to dozens of dirt tracks on the east coast to promote WKA and brought racers to the Dirt World Championships at Daytona this past December.
A Massachusetts native, Will spent time living in Cleveland, Ohio, before settling in Tennessee with his wife, Patti, and family.
Will Frank will be sorely missed by World Karting officials, members and racers. WKA sends its thoughts, prayers and condolences to Patti and the entire Frank family.