Old-timers think they can just cruise into the biggest name in youth soapbox-derbying, but they could still learn a thing or two from the race’s star performer.
Fifteen-year-old Kevin Brennan, a three-year veteran who took first place last year, is aiming for a dynasty on Aug. 13, though he’s willing share a little sage counsel with adults inexperienced with the nature of the race (what with their driver’s licenses and all):
• Keep it simple: Brennan built his winning rig with just two wood planks, four wheels, and a handbrake.
• Small and fast is the way to go: Loading up a cart with fancy widgets will just slow it down. Light-weight materials like plywood are also choice.
• Trust nature: Brennan won last year without a push at the top of the hill, choosing instead to “let gravity do its thing.”
• Know the competition: Remaining conscious of every racer on the hill is key.
• Take risks: Believe it or not, in Brennan’s winning race last year, he changed up his strategy and raced backwards!
— Haru Coryne