Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Soap Box Derby Rolling To New Heights

AKRON, Ohio (Wireless Flash - FlashNews) – Things are rolling to a stop in Akron, Ohio, on Saturday (July 22), thanks to the city’s Annual Soap Box Derby.

About 514 kids from as far away as Guam and Germany are burning rubber to Akron to compete in the Derby, which is a 980- foot “gravity race” set up on a permanent track.

Derby spokesman Jim Huntfman says it’s a record number of racers and a vast improvement from the early ’90s, when less than 200 racers competed.

This is the 69th year of the Derby and times have changed since it first started. These days, the cars are made from kits, not soap boxes, and females make up 45 percent of the racers.

In addition, the racers have to do more than just point their cars down a steep hill. Huntfman says they have know the benefits of different types of axles as well as how to properly distribute lead weights in the racers so that the heavier kids don’t have an unfair advantage.

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