I’m reminded of the days when I was a kid and riding a billycart down the hill was an exciting prospect. Brakes were what your shoes were for.
We never gave such things as risk assessments a thought. There was too much at stake beating the kids from the neighbourhood as we vied for supremacy.
There was much love went into the construction. Some of us were better at it than others.
Ours was an assembly of bits of timber we found around the yard, a few wheels we sourced from the dump and piece of rope as the steering apparatus.
Strategy consisted of determining how much lean was required to take the bend at the bottom of our driveway and at the same time stay on the seat. No seat belts, no helmets, no one even had bike helmets in those days.
So our cart would be oiled up, made as ship shape as we could manage and the fun would begin. Corners would be taken at breath-taking speeds and shoes controlled the pace of the cart braking thankfully before anyone seriously hurt themselves.
Not only did you want the fastest cart you also wanted to know the ins and outs of the neighbours carts as any one else’s idea was always worth stealing.
To this day I recall the scraps and cuts, bruises and spills as we competed on what we considered the great racetracks of the world even if it was down my driveway.