RACING: Teaching lifelong lessons to the younger generation
Following in her father’s footsteps, Nikki Usher is passing on the valuable life lessons learnt in the drag racing industry onto her four children.
Her son Charlie Usher competed at Ironbark Raceway at Roma’s Easter in the Country festival over the weekend.
“My dad used to race and he’s here supporting the kids this weekend which is really special,” she said.
“We have two more children who aren’t old enough to race yet but it won’t be too long before they do.”
The mother believes the lessons her kids learn from racing are valuable in all aspects throughout life.
“What they learn from racing is endless – the camaraderie between the kids and the sportsmanship is beyond great,” Mrs Usher said.
“In a lot of other sports there’s participation medals, whereas in racing you win or lose.
“It teaches them how to handle themself, it teaches them sometimes you just get dealt a really crappy hand – like your car breaks down or sometimes it may go too fast and you get disqualified and they may be really excited for their meet and are ready, then the worst case scenario plays out.
“It’s a good sport to teach them how to deal with life and you just have to push through. It really matures them.”
Being behind the wheel for several years, Mrs Usher said she knows her young kids are in safe hands but sometimes can’t help feeling a little anxious.
“I think the first time Charlie raced he was eight and at his first meeting, I was more nervous than I thought I’d be,” she said.
“Fletcher will be turning eight soon and I’ll be nervous when he starts racing but it’s a ridiculously safe sport – they all ride motorbikes too, and I put them in these cars with no issue in the world – the way they’re strapped in and have protective gear and the rollcage, it’s super safe.”
The mother said she feels comfort in how supportive and community-like the racing industry is for families.
“Everyone is just willing to pitch in – if something breaks, there’s always a parent asking what they can do to help,” she said.
“And when people are new to the sport, someone always puts you under their wing because cars can be tricky to figure out when you’re new so everyone is super supportive.”
Charlie said he had a ball racing in Roma over the weekend and is counting down until he’s 18 to hopefully race in Top Alcohol – “super fast cars”.