Souped-up Power Wheels roar down the race track
Armed with $500 budgets, makers modify and race vehicles like Barbie Hummers and Dora the Explorer Jeep Wranglers for speed and endurance.
Move over, NASCAR. We've got a racing series that combines speed, ingenuity, and large adults on itty-bitty vehicles.
Welcome to the Power Racing Series, where makers modify Power Wheels and Little Tikes cars for a series of races that includes a road course, drag race, and endurance race. These lean, mean toy racing machines can reach harrowing 20 mph speeds.
Teams are allowed a $500 budget to modify a car. Change the battery, swap out the motor, put on some tougher tires, and shore up the suspension to handle your adult heft.
Personally, I would start with the $400 Power Wheels Barbie Cadillac Escalade Custom Edition. Pretty in pink!
Receipts are required to prove that a car is within the budget. Violate the rules and your vehicle will be forfeited to the Power Racing Series officials for the non-negotiable price of $100.
Safety equipment doesn't fall into the budget restrictions, so you can spend as much as you want on brakes, helmets, and air bags--if you can figure out how to fit them into the miniscule dashboard on your Dora the Explorer Jeep Wrangler.
The Power Racing Series has just launched a Kickstarter project aimed at expanding the series for 2012. The fund-raising goal amount of $20,000, if reached, will go to developing a new timing and scoring system, adding new races, buying more safety equipment, and inventing new event obstacles.
T-shirts, stickers, and sponsorships are on the reward list for the Kickstarter project. A $1,500 donation will get driver Karen Corbeill to dress up like Dale Earnhardt, complete with mustache and racing suit, for the entire series. Someone out there, please pledge $1,500 so we can see this.
Check out this exciting high-speed racing action complete with an electrical fire from the 2011 Maker Faire: