top of page
  • Writer's pictureCreative Designs

Soapbox Derby 2016-Muscatine, Iowa

Muscatine holds Soapbox Derby after 50 years

Filmed by East Campus students as a part of their Educational Media Program.As crowds lined Third Street and the tunes blared from loud speakers, spectators saw soapbox derby cars race in downtown Muscatine for the first time in 50 years this Fourth of July. From the Muscatine Journal:

Soapbox Derby Comes Back to Muscatine

Three rounds of competition began at 11 a.m. Monday.  The two fastest times would be counted for each of the 30 competitors. Out of those times, the four fastest moved on to the semi-final round, where there were two races and then fastest from each semi-final  moved on to the championship round.Bill Reimers, who described himself as a "life-long local" took first place in the speed division with a car made from a luggage rack. This was the first time he ever raced in a soapbox derby. In the championship race, Reimers went up against the builder of his car, Thad Davis. Reimers won the championship race with the fastest time of the day, 40:51 seconds. After the race, Reimers said his heart was pumping during and after the race.“I beat his own car,” Reimers joked to a spectator offering congratulations.During the final race, Reimers mapped out the route on his hand, trying to “stay on the line” and win the race.  The route was from the top of the Third Street hill all the way down to Iowa Avenue. Spectators lined the streets behind 300 hay bales stacked along the curbs.Two racers went down at a time. Some were there for serious competition and others were just looking to enjoy the ride. They hit speeds of 25 to 35 mph.  Other first timers to the sport, father and son duo Todd and Tyler Hansen of Muscatine hoped to qualify for the championship round.  Todd almost made the finals with a time of 45.15.Tyler couldn’t race himself since he wasn’t old enough, but had his friend Nate Bass drove Tyler's car. Tyler’s derby car finished with a time of 54.32 seconds.Although Tyler was looking to topple his father, Todd said he was proud of his son’s car.“Honestly, I wanted him to win,” Todd said. “I got this overwhelming sense of accomplishment with how well he did on the car.”Tyler's car featured two big back wheels and a wheelbarrow turned into a seat. Todd’s car was made from a soapbox derby car kit, but was customized with the Musco Lighting logo painted on the side. The car’s number 40 was to celebrate Musco’s 40th anniversary.Tyler thanked his sponsors for all the help with the car.“I just wanted to say thanks to our sponsors; we couldn’t have done it without them,” Todd said.Reimers also thanked the sponsors and competitors, saying they did an amazing job with the race. Reimers also suggested this event should be an  an event annual. He would also like to see the races opened to younger competitors next year.“Since this was a safe event, I’d open it up to the kids so families can build cars together and have kids race,” Reimers said.Reimers and the Hansens are hoping to be back on the Third Street hill next year.

0 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All
bottom of page