This is exactly what we are doing this year. In the past we didn't even have rules handed out only what was in the box. Some parents came and found out the day of the race that their wheels didn't pass inspection among other things.Stan Pope wrote:
Hit the basics, support them in implementing their concepts, allow them to test their results, i.e. a track and a reference car. (You might want to make a "no racing" rule)
It's okay if they dig about and discover / learn more than you intended to teach.
We are holding a time trials this year and will have a drone/pace car for them to run against. I am unsure of this but we will also let them write down their time. They will have one day to fix anything and see if they can make it faster if desired. I don't think it will be a big problem, if it is we won't do it next year.
But once again our main motivation was much like what was stated in the first message - I didn't want to see any cars not make it down the track.
We did do a seminar this year and I think it's only fair especially for new scouts coming into the pack, but it was only a slide show with information on rules, tips & tricks. But this was way over the top from what was happening in previous years.
We may venture into a workshop next year, but I feel not having a workshop can also (for lack of a better word) force the Dad's to help their sons. I think the workshop should possibly be for the single mom's or a Dad that is out of the picture.
The seminar should be adequate to help level the playing field, although I wouldn't turn down anyone who asked for more help.
By the way this year we are also handing out "Turtle" trophies. This won't be announced until the day of the race so scouts won't build their cars specifically to go slow. We thought this would keep those scouts interested that might be out of the running early.
Turtle trophies will go to the 4 slowest cars, we are calling them "Under the Speed Limit" awards. Not trying to coddle the kids, just trying to keep things interesting. Got this idea from last year at the council races when two cars racing each other couldn't make it down the track. (don't know how they made it to the Council races?!) But the crowd cheered more for those two cars than they did for the winners! It was actually quite fun!