Mr STEPHEN JONES (Throsby) (13:48): It has been 25 years since the last billy cart thundered down Wentworth Street, Port Kembla, in my electorate in a once-annual billy cart derby. The iconic event was relaunched last year thanks to the energy and organisational ability of Red Point Artists. The return of the derby was an overwhelming success and I was pleased to see the Red Point gang set the event again this year. Despite the wet weather last Saturday the 2013 billy cart derby attracted nearly 14,000 spectators lining Wentworth Street to watch over 100 competitors—some from as far as Victoria—whip down the track in their handmade contraptions.
There were entries from all ages and occupations, ranging from father-and-son teams with their wooden wagons to the community carts from Lions Clubs and the local SES—a cart I have ridden in myself—right up to the high-speed pods and luges entered by the more daredevil competitors. There was just as much entertainment off the track too with many Port Kembla businesses opening their doors alongside local art exhibitors, street performers, multicultural food vendors and even a motorbike parade.
I pay special thanks to all the community at Red Point, including Wynne Gibson and Dulcie Dal Molin, who volunteered their time and money and worked around the clock for weeks to organise this fantastic event. It has well and truly helped put Port Kembla back on the map.