What's on | Billy Cart Races for kids and parents at Kiama Show on January 26, 27

Billy carts purpose built by Kiama Men's Shed members

Billy carts purpose built by Kiama Men's Shed members

The noble skill of billy cart racing was featured in childhoods of many who grew up in pre-social media, pre-internet and even pre-television eras.

The construction from scavenged materials and subsequent downhill, white-knuckle piloting of the carts was the source of tales, grazed skin and bragging rights.

The tradition will be revived in a revised format at the 2019 Kiama Show on January 26 and 27.

For the 2019 show there will be races for Year Five and Year Six students and a Parent and Child Race. 

The initial idea to run the billy carts down Bong Bong Street, into the showground, up the ramp and finish in front of the pavilion and grandstand was not deemed to be risk free -- instead the races will be held on the showground on grass and a flat surface.

A series of identical billy carts have been made by Kiama Mens Shed – their construction has revived memories of previous epic machines.

The carts are two-person vehicles designed for a driver who sits and steers and the motor who pushes and runs. The races will be elimination between two teams over about 100m. The teams start at the Start-Finish Line and race in opposite directions to and round a bollard 20m away and back to the Start-Finish Line – at which point the driver and motor have to swap positions and complete the opposite section of the course.

First team back to the Start-Finish Line wins and progresses to the next round. There will be heats and semi finals on Friday late afternoon and finals on Saturday with cash prizes for the winners.

It is planned that the Kiama Billy Cart F1 Motor GP will become a feature event at all future Kiama Shows with opportunities from 2020 to both construct and race.