This section of the MakerFaire almost deserves an entire event of its own. I know I would happily attend a monthly match of the power racing series in my home town. To compete, you must have a modded Power Wheel. Yes, those electric kids vehicles that go really slowly across your lawn, those power wheels. You tear it apart, soup it up, and race it.
The modifications I saw were all fantastic. There were completely different drive trains ranging from electric drills to starter motors. The wheels had often been replaced for better traction as well, though some opted to keep the poor traction just for effect. Control systems ranged from micro controllers handling power down to two bare wires being mashed together. It was fantastic.
Though it was technically a race, I got the feeling that most of the participants weren’t there to win, so much as to build an amusing performance. Goofy costumes and slick tires mixed with squirt guns and shouts of joy made the whole thing quite the spectacle. As you can imagine, there were electrical fires as well, but everyone jumped in immediately with a practiced set of actions to ensure the driver and bystanders were un-scathed. This was fantastic. I may have to start looking for people who want to start up a league here in Springfield Missouri.
Note that the black car that I was able to get closest to had a starter motor for the power. This motor kept overheating so he rigged up a water cooling system you can see in the pics. It was great.