COMMUNITY, SALEM EVENTS

And they’re off! Salem derby racers harness gravity in bid for speed

Soap box racing returned last weekend to Derby Hill in Bush’s Pasture Park for the first time since 2019.

The Best in the West Class AA Rally ran heats on Saturday, May 25, and Sunday, May 26, organized by Oregon Soap Box Derby.

The event started as Salem Soap Box Derby in 1952 with Doug Adams earning the title as Salem’s first champion.

Here are results of the 2024 event:

Saturday division winners:

Stock (ages 7-13) – Alistar McCann of West Linn

Super Stock (ages 9-18) – Felix Soto of Portland

Masters (ages 10-20) – Veronica Stagnaro of Danville, California

Sunday division winners:

Stock (ages 7-13)  – Alistar McCann of West Linn

Super Stock (ages 9-18) – Zachary DeFreest of Eugene

Masters (ages 10-20)  – Reese Delaney of Cove

Racers must make repairs on the fly trackside at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
A racer gets tips at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
Caitlin Steinbrugge and Avery watch the Salem Soap Box Derby races at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
Salem Soap Box Derby fans at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
Soap Box racers listen to instructions from the race director at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
Soap Box racers listen to instructions from Sam Delaney at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
A racer prepares to make a run in the Super Stock Class at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
Awards from Soap Box Derby wins in years past were on display at the track at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
A racer waits for the start of the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
As the gate drops down, a racer begins the course at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
Una lines up a Super Stock Class car for the beginning of a race at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
Zoey Vanderpool starts down the run in the Super Stock Class at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
A racer practices aerodynamics before the start of their race Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
Adrian Cordon sits with their Master Class car at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
Kai Cordon sits on a personally designed car in the Super Stock Class at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
One of the uniquely designed cars at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
A racer crosses the finish line at the at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
A young competitor believes that goggles are helpful in her racing experience at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
The racing care line up at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
Zoey Vanderpool looks down at her Super Stock Class car at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
Zoey Vanderpool makes a run down the track during the Super Stock Class at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
A competitor crouches forward in a racing position during the Stock Class race at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)
A racer smiles after finishing the Stock Class run at the Salem Soap Box Derby at Bush’s Pasture Park on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Laura Tesler/Special to Salem Reporter)

PREVIOUS COVERAGE:

Salem Soap Box Derby returns Memorial Day weekend

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Laura Tesler has lived in Salem, Oregon for 20 years and is originally from Flint, MI. Laura has been an underwater photographer for 15 years, and is an avid scuba diver. Topside, she has been taking photographs since age 12, and currently works on assignment for the Salem Reporter, and full time purchasing land for fish and wildlife habitat in the Willamette Valley. Laura attended Oregon State University, and has traveled extensively all over the world and the United States.