PICTURES: Roaring final for Island Bay Festival
THE RIBBLE Street downhill kart race has been an institution in the annual Island Bay Festival for at least 10 years.
This year’s supreme winner was John Barraud in his fibreglass kart, the Silver Bullet.
Organiser Nic McGowan says the race was set up about a decade ago when residents of Ribble Street had letters in their post boxes seeking permission for the one-day road closure.
“It’s mildly inconvenient for people who live on the street,” says Mr McGowan. “It’s fun and vivacious.”
The downhill kart races are split into junior, intermediate and advanced categories.
In the junior category, trolleys have a driver who rides and steers and a motivator who pushes and is encouraged to supply realistic engine sounds. It starts halfway down on the flatter side of the hill.
The winner of the junior category was Nevaeh Derbyshire.
The intermediate category is for independent drivers, and two drivers race at a time until one trolley eliminates the rest.
The winner this year was Boh Denham.
The senior category had drivers navigating a marked course, designed to test their driving skills. Competitors had to weave around brightly coloured crash boxes.
The winner was John Barraud, with a time of 13.97 seconds, who also took out the supreme prize.
The last race is Le Grande Rush, which starts at the top of the hill, is time-trialled and and for high-performance trolleys only.
On the left is brothers Quinn and Edan Gillam-Hunt who rode together in the Ferrari, which won the award for consistent performer. On the right is John Barraud, the supreme winner.
The Ribble Street Death Wagon, made of five bicycles, was awarded a consolation prize in the Le Grande Rush.
On the left is Ben Hazelwood in the Racing Bull. Ben shared the trolley with school friend Boh Denham. On the right is junior champion Nevaeh Hazelwood.
A Wellington Free Ambulance was on hand for emergencies, but only had to deal with minor scrapes.
Seton Spence in the Black Ninja had an impressive crash but did not let it deter him from racing.