Derby Downs

The world-famous Derby Downs track in Akron, Ohio isn’t only home to races leading up to the FirstEnergy All-American Soap Box Derby World Championship – Derby Downs is also a center of activity and interest from the spring through the fall for special events and corporate outings!

Derby Downs
Annual Events

Gravity Racing Challenge
STEM Team Competition

STEM Summer Camp

FirstEnergy All-American
Soap Box Derby World Championship

Corporate Derby Challenge

Girls Racing to STEM Workshop

Inclusion Day

Senior Day

About the Derby Downs Track

Derby Downs has been the home of the All-American Soap Box Derby® for 76 of the event’s 78 years. It lies against a natural hill on the eastern fringes of Akron Municipal-Fulton Airport. On the west side of the track’s run-out area is the International Soap Box Derby organization’s headquarters building. The Derby program’s year-round administrative staff operates from the headquarters.

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There is a garage and service area at the top of the track which serves as car storage and the “service pit” area during the All-American Soap Box Derby Race Week. The Derby Hall of Fame and Museum building is located on George Washington Boulevard. During other times of the year, the Topside facility is the site of the Derby program’s assembly and shipping operations for the car kits and other components purchased by race organizations and individual contestants.

The bridge is 35 feet, seven inches past the former finish line, which was moved to lengthen the official track to 989 feet, four inches. To obtain the propulsion that produces exciting races, the track’s decline is separated into three stages. The first 53.75 feet carry a 16 percent grade, meaning a drop at the rate of 16 feet for every 100 feet. There follows a six percent grade for the next 530 and a two percent drop over the remaining 405.5 feet.

The track itself is as safe as experience and engineering can make it. The 30-foot-wide track is bordered by guardrails. The 1,200-foot run-out area beyond the finish line is an additional safety precaution. Parallel lines on the full length of the track serve as guides for drivers.