Last Thursday, we held the annual Year 6 Billy Cart Derby, one of the most highly anticipated events on the St Michael’s calendar.

Now in its 11th year, the Derby was initially introduced as part of the Year 6 ‘transdisciplinary investigation into complex machines’. Over the years the Derby has become a whole School celebration which helps to signify the end of Primary School for our Year 6 cohort.

Year 6 Teacher, Mr Bergin, said the Derby is “a marvellous way for the students to display their collaborative skills and enjoy each others company.”

In teams, the students build and decorate their very own carts, come up with team names and create costumes.

Year 6 student Daisy said she really enjoyed working with her teammates.

“We all became so much closer than we were before the Billy Cart Derby, I was quite surprised because I  thought it was just going to be a race,” said Daisy.

Each year, the Derby attracts a large crowd of spectators including students from the junior years, parents and members of the wider School community, and this year was no exception.

On Thursday afternoon, the crowd gathered on the sidelines of Frances Newson Oval to cheer on the Year 6 students as they raced around the track.

Students raced around the challenging track

Students raced around the challenging track

This year, for the first time, the racetrack was designed by the students themselves.

Year 6 student Cam worked on the track design and said everyone in the class put forward ideas which they merged together to create the final design.

“We presented the ideas to our class and ran a ballot where everyone chose their preferences for the track,” said Cam.

Year 6 student and fellow track designer Akira said the students used their iPads to help create the track.

“Once we decided on the design we used the trundle wheel to measure out the track and put down the checkpoints where each team needed to switch drivers,” said Akira.

The students worked in teams of five or six and each student was given the chance to drive the cart.

Students switched drivers at each checkpoint

Each student is given the chance to drive the cart

All teams put in a fantastic effort on the day and coming in first place was team Mario Party.

Team Mario Party came in first place in the Billy Cart Derby

Team Mario Party came in first place in the Billy Cart Derby

In addition to the award for First Place, the competition also presented awards for Best Costume and Best Cart.

The award for Best Costume was presented to team Class of 2018, who was inspired by the Year 12 class and their final day of School costumes.

Team Class of 2018 was awarded best costumes.

Class of 2018 was awarded best costumes.

Class of 2018 team member, Tilda, said making the costumes was their favourite part of the Derby.

“Our first idea was to dress silly, but then when we were working on our cart we came up with this idea. We thought it would be fun because we are graduating from Year 6,” said Tilda.

The award for the Best Cart was presented to The Badgers, who were inspired by the 2018 Bachelor, the Honeybadger.

Winners of best cart, The Badgers

The Badgers received the award for Best Cart

Topping off the race day fun, was the always entertaining staff race, where St Michael’s staff members volunteer to dress up and compete in the Billy Cart Derby.

The always entertaining staff race

The always entertaining staff race

Thank you to everyone who helped bring the Year 6 Billy Cart Derby to life this year, it was certainly a fun-filled day and we’re excited to do it all again with our 2019 Year 6 students.