Full speed ahead for Kettering park’s soap box derby

A previous soap box derby at Wicksteed Park (2016)
A previous soap box derby at Wicksteed Park (2016)

Amateur racers will keep alive Charles Wicksteed’s legacy of engineering and innovation when they tackle this year’s soap box derby at Wicksteed Park.

Saturday’s event (June 16) will see 60 home-built karts tackle a downhill course close to the Kettering park’s campsite, with both juniors and seniors competing for prizes.

The event is now in its fourth year and is rapidly growing into one of the best events of its kind in the country.

It encourages competitors to use their ingenuity and imagination to create vehicles capable of tackling the course, with the thrills and spills attracting competitors and spectators from across the region.

Karts will be on parade from 11.30am with the first timed runs from midday and an awards ceremony at 5pm.

The event maintains the park’s reputation for innovation and highlights the extraordinary legacy of the park’s creator Charles Wicksteed, and his life as an entrepreneur, inventor, innovator and successful engineer.

Charles invented the modern day slide and swing as part of his dream to encourage families to enjoy a healthy, active lifestyle.

Tracey Clarke, Wicksteed Park’s community link manager, said: “Charles Wicksteed was at the forefront of innovation and engineering and the Soap Box Derby encourages people to be innovative and create something unique, just like he did.

“Families can have a free, fun-filled afternoon cheering on up to 60 home built soap box karts on a downhill challenge against the clock.

“The event is growing in interest nationally, with a strong ‘build-your-own’ focus.

“It is low cost fun for all of the family and an event where groups of enthusiasts come together to put their designs to the test.”

The event is free to watch, although car parking charges apply, and spectators can just turn up on the day.

The event is raising money for Wicksteed Charitable Trust and competitors are encouraged to dress up themselves and their cars.

Drivers under-18 must complete the driver consent form and have their parent/guardian countersign it as part of the entry process.

Wicksteed Park’s rides and attractions are now open for the 2018 season.

For further information about the soap box derby go to www.wicksteedpark.org/events For further information about the park go to www.wicksteedpark.org.