TXDerbyDad wrote:Because once you're past inspection, there is no risk. It's the reason why NASCAR has inspects cars before and after races, and cheaters always get caught afterwards. Before the race, the car can be corrected, and everything is fine, but afterwards they already competed at an unfair advantage.
NASCAR is an adult race. I do think that we need to do things a bit differently for a kids race.
I don't disagree, that's why I don't like tearing down a car after a race. But, I've also seen some adult behavior to let me know that it's not just a kids race to everyone, and those people can and have ruined it for kids. There's a reason there's a cottage industry around selling derby related stuff, and it's not Cubs who are buying it. Now, I've bought the tool pack from MaxV, and weight and other stuff from other vendors, but I draw the line at a $30+ set of wheels or $16 axles, at least for the Cub races. Those establish an uneven playing field where the most money invested tends to win, and not effort by the Cubs. My scientific curiosity, love of physics and experimentation, and access to a track means I do own some of those things to further my understanding, but I'd NEVER put them on a car in a Pack race. Other people are not so scrupulous.
TXDerbyDad wrote:Here's a hypothetical, built around two actual situations I've witnessed, though modified to show my point.
Let's say your rules allow drilling axle holes, but don't allow modified axles. Unfortunately, without pulling the axles, you can't check, but you take it on face value that they're from the BSA kit and they're normal. Your race is a best 3 out of 4 runs averaged to determine place. One car dominates, and on its fourth run it flies off the track, the car breaks, and a modified axle with relief spots is exposed for everyone to see. The car clearly passed inspection, but you now have proof it was winning because of cheating, and everyone can see it.
What do you do?
Any rule that you cannot verify with a non-destructive inspection, is a bad rule and should be thrown out.
Agreed, but it's a fairly common rule (google pinewood derby rules and you'll see), and a situation I've witnessed where two cars did fly off and break but thankfully they were not cheating. Further, we expect Scouts and people into Scouting to be HONEST. But I'm a big believer in trust but verify.