Mason Moore | Hinckley Reporter | 22 June 2022
THE RETURN of Hinckley Bid’s Soap Box Derby event was hailed a success yesterday (Sunday, 26 June), as thousands of visitors headed on down to Hinckley town centre to watch drivers steam on through Castle Street in their carts to try and achieve the fastest lap times.
Crowds filled each main street in the town centre – Castle Street, Upper Castle Street, The Borough, and even Market Place – in anticipation to see who would achieve the best times, and catch a glimpse of the many different themed vehicles in the derby.
There was a large turnout as thousands gathered around to see who could hit the fastest times in this year’s event, following a three-year-hiatus, with the last being held back in 2019.
Drivers had the choice of swerving around the corner as they attempted a chicane, or the choice to jump over a small obstacle whilst seated in their vehicles.
During the first of three laps, one of the drivers who had decided to go on a wooden cart-like soap box had taken a tumble off his vehicle outside Subway.
Thankfully, he gave the ‘all clear’ with a thumbs up, and continued on into Market Place, where he ended his run. Luckily, he completed both his second and third runs successfully.
Many themed vehicles were on display – from novelty-themed ones, to local charities and businesses.
Some of the notable entrants included a replica of the ‘Knight Bus’ from Harry Potter, a Ghostbuster’s ‘Ecto-1’ soap box, and a Platinum Jubilee-themed soap box.
One of the vehicles entered in claimed to be ‘the fastest banana in Hinckley’, whilst another soap box was designed to looked like a dog.
Meanwhile, some entrants didn’t need a decorated vehicle – instead, they decided to go old-school with a simple go-kart, with the idea of winning and being the quickest on their mind.
KEY EVENT: Bosworth MP comments
Dr. Luke Evans, Member of Parliament for Hinckley and Bosworth, said: “This is my first Soap Box Derby. I’ve been mingling in the crowds and I have heard first-hand how excited everyone is. This is a real testament to the BID (Business Improvement District), and Hinckley really is bucking the national trend. My favourite soap box which entered in has to be the Platinum Jubilee-themed one.”
Event organisers comment
Steve Wegerif, Director of Hinckley BID, commented on the turnout for the event. He said: “I’m really, really pleased. The crowds speaks for themselves. We’ve had many enthusiastic drivers taking part in this event.
“We have seen some incorrect reporting in the press recently regarding Hinckley’s high street, but we’ve got the lowest vacancy rate in Leicestershire, with 14 new businesses moving in since the start of the year and six more lined up to join.
“We arrange so many free-to-attend events for people to enjoy, so Hinckley is a town centre which is always worth checking out and being proud of.”
He further added: “Our thanks to all the businesses in Hinckley town centre. Their financial contribution to the BID enables these huge events to take place and allow us to showcase the very best of Hinckley. Thanks also to those who made this event happen.”
Toni Scott, Business Liaison Manager and Events Manager for Hinckley BID, said: “Once again, the weather held out for our brave entrants to push their vehicles to the limit. Our thanks to all who entered and to the many volunteers who assisted us.”
After watching the vehicles head on down Hinckley’s high street, a trophy presentation was held at the end of the event by Hinckley and Bosworth Mayor, Dawn Glenville and her consort and husband, Barry Walker, where they presented trophies to the respective winners.
The results are as follows:
Seniors – Fastest Drivers on the Day
- 1st Place: Dirty Truckers – 21.1 seconds
- 2nd Place: 1381 Motor Club – 22.5 seconds
- 3rd Place: Trinity Players – 22.6 seconds
Juniors – Fastest Drivers on the Day
- 1st Place – YEP Leicester – 22.3 seconds
- 2nd Place – The Hillbillies – 23.8 seconds
- 3rd Place – The MG’s – 24.2 seconds
Overall Fastest Team
- Senior – Overall Fastest Team (3 run average): The Dirty Truckers – 21.35 seconds
- Junior – Overall Fastest Team (3 run average): YEP Leicester – 22.55 seconds
- Best Turned Out Soap Box and Crew: The Mutzs Nuts
- Best Novelty Soap Box: 1381 Motor Club
- Most Enthusiastic Junior Racer: The Knight Bus
- Best Amateur Soap Box: Earl Shilton Scouts