Tallahassee Soap Box Derby

By: Shari Loftley Email
By: Shari Loftley Email

It was ready...set... go today on Blairstone Road for the 5th annual Tallahassee Region Soap Box Derby.

41 racers aged eight to seventeen took to the streets in race cars they built with their own hands.

Neal Davis is the Executive Director and Race Director of The Tallahassee Regional Soap Box Derby.

"All these kids have to take a car, a part, and put it back together or they buy a new car and put it together and get it ready to race."

The Soap Box Derby is a non-profit youth development and racing program which has run nationally since 1934.

Soap Box Derby racing was brought back to Tallahassee in 2004 after being gone for over ten years.

The Tallahassee Soap Box Derby is more than just building cars and racing them it's also about building long lasting relationships. The program includes children from Tallahassee, Thomasville, Wakulla County, Quincy and Jefferson County, kids coming from different counties and cities for what two-year racer Scott Crosby describes as a common interest.

"You build friendships and you go around and rally with other people and you become family pretty much."

Regardless of the outcome of the race, each child is a winner with memories to cherish the rest of their lives.

The kids race for a chance to take home an even bigger prize this August at the World Championship finals in Akron, Ohio.

Families have been racing in Tallahassee for years. The Davis family included. "This is third generation... I raced in the fifties, my kids raced in the seventies and now my grand kids are racing."

The derby also included the annual sheriffs race between the Leon County Sheriff's Department and Wakulla Sheriff's Department. Each year the Law Enforcement cup goes to the winning sheriff's office between the two counties.

This year Leon County deputies walked away with the bragging rights.

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