The schedule for the race goes as followed: Saturday will kick off with the Stock Race, followed by the Super Stock and the Masters race. Sunday will be the Challenger Race.
Races are subject to chance, based on the number of participants in the race.
The stock race is for kids between the ages of 7-13, the Super Stock and Masters will be for children between the ages of 10-17 and the Challenger is for the handicapped children participating.
“Kids can choose to be in which race they want. Usually the tougher the races, the nicer the cars and the more experienced the kids,” said Derby Director Dennis Werntz.
Impound day was held on Saturday June 9, with the final inspection and weigh in between the days of June 10–14. During the inspection, directors inspect cars for safety and to make sure they meet the strict regulations of the All-American Soap Box Derby Association.
“The first and most important thing we have to ensure is the safety of all our participants. We check to make sure everything is working properly and that nothing will go wrong. The parents depend on us to keep their kids safe,” said Werntz.
Werntz and his team stress the importance of letting the community know that each kid has every opportunity while in the derby group.
“I think more kids need to be involved in this group, especially from Holmes County. It’s much different than any other sport. Parents get to be hands on with their kids instead of just dropping them off at practice,” said Werntz.
First and foremost the group focusses on reassuring parents that they are here for the families. Each year, the group adds more opportunities for families to get involved.
“We work with families to get them what they need and to make sure we keep them on the right track. The kids that are in our group are treated like our own kids and we want to see them succeed,” said Werntz.
A clinic was provided for rookies to build their cars. All first-timers were asked to complete a trial run before the final race on May 20 or June 3. Sponsors were at the trial runs to help promote the sport for the new racers. Kids and their families are responsible to get $120 from their sponsor to meet all their needs while entering into the race. Assistance can be available for families who need help through the organization.
“Having kids go out and talk to businesses for their sponsorship teaches them a lot about how to open up and talk to people. Often kids hide behind their shells, but this organization is a great educational opportunity to learn new things,” said Werntz.
After the race, the top eight winners will be announced. They will receive trophies and plaques in each division. Each first place from their respective division will earn an opportunity to compete in the All-American Soapbox Derby in Akron, on July 21.
Published: June 11, 2012