Zucchini Races

It is less than a week until the https://www.mcspaddencountyfair.ca/zucchini-races, which is Sunday, September 12. (Note that there’s a VHS general meeting on Saturday the 11th, so there’s your weekend sorted.)

The last time this was brought up, people seemed enthusiastic about making over-engineered zucchini racers. But, there’s been silence on the subject for quite a long time…

So lets talk zucchini! Who is thinking of attending? What are you planning to build?

One thing I noticed is that in the pictures of past zucchini races, it looks like they stand a board up in front of the racers, then knock it over but leave it on the ramp. Which means your wheels need to be big enough to get over the board.

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I will put something in, either in the outlaw or technical class.

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Hi Elizabot et.al.

The starting gate sits flat with each racer in it’s own lane, the entire gate area tips up until the gate matches the slope of the ramp.
Here is a copy of some questions from past races, the current webpage has a photo from the top of the track showing some pickle-weights in the gates

Comment: Hello, I’m looking to get a bit more info on your zucchini racer track, particularly:

  • Is there a center rail on the track between the vehicles wheels?

  • Are there walls on the outside
    No center rail, there are 3 lanes, each is 11" wide, the walls between lanes are 7/8" high.

  • How will vehicles be set in the track and released at the start of each race?

The starting area is a level table surface that is is hinged, each starting lane is also 11" wide and 20" long with the same 7/8" walls between, there is also a back stop to prevent any rolling off the back
.To start each race the zucchinis will be placed so the fronts align with the starting line, a race official will lift a handle that tips the table up to 28 degrees, allowing the racers to roll onto the track (the first 18’ of track is also 28 deg.).

  • What are the weight categories being raced against one another?

The weight categories will be determined during registration, as zucchinis range quite a bit in size, and it is unknown what range of sizes will show up on race day.

  • What does the track’s profile look like, particularly the transition from sloped to flat? Ie. is it two boards abutted to one another such that there is a sharp angle at the point where it goes from sloped to flat or is it more of a smooth transition curve?

The track consists of the starting table, 18’ long engineered floor joists, and the final section is 8’ of flexible plywood.
When the starting table is lifted to start a race, the table meets the track with a very small lip (the starting table above the track approx 1/16", the joist portion of track meets the curved ply with a similar negative lip. the curved portion transitions from 28deg to 0 deg over 6’, and then racers are allowed to run off onto the grass for another 6-8 feet before encountering the safety wall (bales of straw) the finish line is the point where plywood meets grass.

How this is helpful and Inspiring.
Weigh in is in McSpadden Park from 2-4 on Saturday (Sept 11) and Day of from 11-12:30 (Sept 12)
Don’t miss it!

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This 2019 Fair video has lots of shots of the ramp in action.

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