A young girl participates in a timed race. Soap Box Derby uses both direct head-to-head races and time trials.
Parents load cars into the starting blocks at the top of the hill.
The car in front establishes a good lead on the other racer.
A racer and his father load his car onto a truck trailer to take it up the hill.
After loading his car, a participant waits for his next race.
Parents take video of a head-to-head race.
On a beautiful summer afternoon - sunny, but not too hot - children race in the Washington, DC Soap Box Derby. They take their cars two-thirds of the way up Capitol Hill over and over as they progress through races that will determine the local winner of each category. The winners race at the championship derby later in the summer in Akron, OH, where they can win educational scholarships.
Racing is often passed down from one generation to the next, and some families have raced in derbies for decades. Racers must build their own cars from kits, an activity intentionally designed to include both parents and children, making participation at its core a family affair. Many parents and grandparents were present for the Washington, DC race.
While cars must be built from kits and meet specific requirements, racers can customize their appearance, adding a bit of creativity to the event. Cars are powered only by gravity and aerodynamics but have brakes for stopping.
Soap Box Derby races are facilitated through the All-American Soap Box Derby organization and have taken place since 1934.
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