Soap Box Derby competition is more than just a race

2 years 2 months 1 week ago Sunday, June 12 2016 Jun 12, 2016 Sunday, June 12, 2016 3:51:00 AM CDT June 12, 2016 in News
By: Hli Yang, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA – Columbia’s Downtown Optimist Club hosted its annual Soap Box Derby on Sunday. The race, though competitive, teaches children life skills and science.

Blake Holmes, an 11-year-old driver from Columbia, got his start in the race four years ago.

“I actually started doing this because we actually got a Christmas tree here (Downtown Optimist Club) when it was Christmas and then they asked me if I wanted to race in the Soap Box Derby and I said, ‘yeah, sure I’ll race in the Soap Box Derby,’” Holmes said.

To Holmes’ surprise, he won his division.

“I was really, really happy because I didn’t think I was going to win because it was my first year and I really didn’t know anything, but I was really happy because I got to go to nationals,” Holmes said.  

In his four years of racing, he’s learned the competition is more than just a race. Holmes’s said it’s an opportunity to spend more time with his family and learn more about physics.

“You shouldn’t steer a lot because when you’re steering, you’re just wasting, you won’t go fast instead of just going straight on,” Holmes said. “And building the car is really, really fun because you get to spend time with your family and like, my dad and I were building my car, doing tweaks and everything like the alignments has to be as straight as it can be on a dial to zero. You have to adjust your axle, brake, and pedal and spring too. It’s just really exciting.”

Mid-Missouri Soap Box Derby Director Rick McKernan said derby racing is built on educational STEM concepts where the drivers learn various aspects of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math.

The program book states, "While the driver's mission is to win the race, doing so requires the sound application of many educational concepts that enhance the driver's likelihood of winning."

Holmes’ mom Cassy said the Downtown Optimist Club provides a great opportunity for the children and families.

“We are able to get together and it’s not just the kids working on the cars, there’s always parents and siblings always running around here,” Cassy said.

She said this competition has allowed Blake to learn outside of the typical sports he does.

“He learns about science and physics, and the cars going up and down in motion,” Cassy said. “It’s not just your typical sports thing. There is a learning aspect to it.”  

Blake has learned several science lessons through the race, but he’s also gained more knowledge on other subjects.

“I might do some stretches because I have to get low in my car because of the aerodynamics."

He said he’s excited to race on Sunday, but is okay if he doesn’t win again.

“It’s not really bad if I don’t go to Akron because I give someone else the chance to go to Akron, because I’ve already been there,” Holmes said. “So, it doesn’t really matter if I lose or win or something. It’s just about having fun really.”

43 drivers from all over Mid-Missouri including Sturgeon, Fayette, Fulton, Ashland, Hartsburg, Harrisburg, Hallsville, Boonville, Centralia, Clark and Columbia participated on Sunday. Different businesses sponsored the drivers.

The finalists with the best times advance to the International Soap Box Derby in Akron, Ohio where drivers from all around the world compete. The drivers range from 7-17 years old, but some “local celebrity” drivers also came to compete on Sunday.

The three different divisions in the Soap Box Derby are Stock, SuperStock, and Masters. To see a list of rules for the competition, visit the Mid-Missouri’s Soap Box Derby’s website.

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY - After several meetings regarding Jefferson City’s budget, the city’s budget committee held a public hearing Monday night.... More >>
1 hour ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 7:55:00 PM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - MU's campus was more crowded Monday compared to recent years. Freshman enrollment has the highest increase in... More >>
3 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 6:39:00 PM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
LEBANON (AP) — A 31-year-old Missouri teacher was given a suspended sentence in a case of sexual conduct with a... More >>
3 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 5:59:00 PM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Officers arrested two men in connection to a Monday shooting on Eastland Circle. Columbia Police officers responded... More >>
3 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 5:52:00 PM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – Matt Garrett has been named general manager of KOMU 8 and Mid-Missouri’s CW. He has served in the... More >>
4 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 5:03:17 PM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
FESTUS (AP) — A U.S. Army helicopter was forced by bad weather to make an emergency landing at a restaurant... More >>
4 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 4:56:00 PM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – After three weekends in a row of gunfire downtown, this past weekend was relatively quiet in comparison. Since... More >>
5 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 4:29:00 PM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - A nurse who falsely claimed to provide health care services to Carl DeBrodie pleaded guilty to a... More >>
5 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 4:05:00 PM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — A judge has sentenced a man to life in prison for attempting to rape a Missouri State... More >>
6 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 3:49:53 PM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — A couple claims in a lawsuit that a former top lay official in the Springfield-Cape Girardeau Catholic... More >>
6 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 3:46:52 PM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
O'FALLON (AP) — Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft is investigating why a suburban St. Louis polling place opened 90... More >>
6 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 3:42:09 PM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - In wake of the worsening drought conditions throughout Missouri, Governor Mike Parson announced in a press conference... More >>
6 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 3:14:00 PM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - City council members will give the public its first chance Monday night to comment on the budget for... More >>
7 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 1:58:00 PM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - An electrical fire at a Columbia shop caused about $10,000 in damages Sunday afternoon. The Columbia Fire... More >>
8 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 1:41:00 PM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
CAMDEN COUNTY - Four people took a golf cart for a joyride Saturday morning, according to the Camden County Sheriff's... More >>
8 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 1:12:00 PM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - University of Missouri police are crediting the public for helping them find the suspect in a sex offense... More >>
11 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 10:23:00 AM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — Conserving oil is no longer an economic imperative for the U.S., the Trump administration... More >>
11 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 10:20:55 AM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Kansas City police are investigating three separate homicides over a 12-hour span. KMBC-TV reports... More >>
14 hours ago Monday, August 20 2018 Aug 20, 2018 Monday, August 20, 2018 7:42:00 AM CDT August 20, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 68°
10pm 67°
11pm 67°
12am 68°
1am 68°