Challenging Ultimate Speed
Not exactly buggy, but pretty close to it, The Ultimate Speed Challenge is hosted at the All-American Soap Box Derby during the Championship event which is July 27th this year. Because of it’s similarity to Buggy (and lack of “student status” requirement) there are several Buggy Alums that like to go and watch or even enter and race one or two cars.
For those that aren’t familiar, the Ultimate Speed Challenge happens in Akron, OH and is a single downhill roll. The heats are done like buggy with 3 lanes and 3 cars at a time. The starts are synchronized by a mechanical paddle that the cars all lean against at the start which then falls forward to release them. At the end of the race, all cars must brake and stop, but there’s no required distance (as far as I know).
The USC is the no-holds-barred version of the soapbox derby where many of the normal rules are relaxed and teams are allowed to go all out for the fastest cars possible. There are fewer strict rules than in buggy, what with the no turning and all, but the most noticeable differences are that the driver must be feet first when in the car and the wheels have to be a specific distance apart to line up with the standard soapbox start line.
I went for the first time last year and took a bunch of pictures (seen here) and I’ll be going again this year again. I know there are some other buggy people heading up there as well, so if you are: What brings you out to the races this year? and if you aren’t: What is keeping you away from the races?
I’m not participating in the races, but I will be spectating. Last year I particularly enjoyed chatting with other buggy alums and seeing what the competitors came up with in shell shape and design as well as wheel housings and wheels. Hope to see some of you there!