FirstEnergyAll-American Soap Box Derby Countdown

About Us

Celebrating 79 Years of Racing in New Hampshire

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Since 1939, the New Hampshire Soap Box Derby has held youth racing events that are open to boys and girls between the ages of 7 through 20. 

Three major events are hosted by our organization in NH each year.  We host an annual Local Race which is held in June on Broadway in Dover, NH.  Residents of New Hampshire, southern Maine, and southern Vermont can participate.  The winner of a Local Race is called a "Local Champion" and is eligible to compete in the First Energy All-American Soap Box Derby World Championship in Akron, Ohio against other Local Champions.

We also host annual Spring and Fall Rally Race weekends which are often held at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, NH.  The south entrance five lane roadway provides just the right conditions for a race course.  Top seeded racers in Region 10 are eligible to compete in the First Energy All-American Soap Box Derby World Championship in Akron, Ohio against other Regional Rally Champions. 

In Soap Box Derby drivers compete side by side on a gentle sloping track or street blocked from automobile traffic. In fairness, drivers race against each other twice per heat, switching lanes (timers) and performing a swap of their wheels. The overall time difference between the two finishers crossing the finish line determines the winner. Races are performed in a series of heats in a single or double elimination manner (depending on the type of event). Courses average about 800 feet in length with races often won in fractions of a second.

This is a unique program in that it encourages close parent-child activities while building and racing the car. The construction of the gravity race car reinforces the importance of setting and completing goals while developing traits such as self-confidence, perseverance and craftsmanship. The parent/child relationship is fostered as parents teach their children the proper use of tools. The youth is encouraged to do as much of the work as their level permits.

“Most of all, derby is about fun, family and sportsmanship!”





Mission Statement

The Soap Box Derby® is an international nonprofit organization whose mission is to build knowledge and character, and to create meaningful experiences through collaboration and fair and honest competition.

Core Vaules and Drivers

• Youth Education and Leadership Development
• Family Engagement and Enrichment
• Honesty, Integrity and Perseverance
• Innovation and Entrepreneurship
• Teamwork and Collaboration
• Mentoring
• Volunteerism
• Commitment to Community

The Derby is the official sanctioning body of Soap Box Derby racing and has exclusive licensing partnerships with more than 100 racing districts throughout world. These racing districts conduct sanctioned Soap Box Derby races throughout the year and qualify champs for the annual FirstEnergy All-American Soap Box Derby® World Championship race at the world famous Derby Downs Track in Akron, Ohio. 

The Derby's Education Program is a fast-growing component of the organization and includes a STEM-Based Curriculum, the Gravity Racing Challenge® STEM Team Competition and a Mini Soap Box Derby program. 

The Derby also operates the world famous Derby Downs Track in Akron, Ohio where events are held throughout the racing season.

The Board of Directors oversees the operation of the Derby, and the day-to-day activities are handled by the Headquarters staff in Akron.