Off to the races

Tyne Val­ley na­tive heads to Ohio Soap Box Cham­pi­onship

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - THE ISLAND -

A fam­ily of nine had to fight for spots in the van when they headed to Ohio Fri­day morn­ing.

Bradley Hardy, 13, has his sights set high on the down­hill slope he hopes to con­quer at the Ohio Soap­box Derby on July 29 dur­ing the derby’s 80th an­niver­sary run.

“The hill is so big,” noted

Hardy.

How­ever, the young driver is con­fi­dent he can win and isn’t ner­vous about the com­pe­ti­tion.

The soap­box event in­volves a car that isn’t mo­tor­ized, re­ly­ing en­tirely on grav­ity to pull them to the fin­ish line.

The All-Amer­i­can style car Hardy drives is spon­sored by the P.E.I. Bag Com­pany. Trevor Smith, who is with the com­pany, is ex­cited about Hardy’s big trip too.

“He’ll like the crowd,” said Smith about the young driver.

The event is huge, bring­ing crowds that fill the 6,000 seats sur­round­ing the soap­box track.

Closer to home, Tyne Val­ley’s own Soap Box Derby will kick off the Oys­ter Fes­ti­val at the end of the month. These races in­clude two dif­fer­ent styles of cars. Rod MacNeill of West Isle En­ter­prises in Tyne Val­ley refers to these as big or small cars.

While they’re thought of as the big cars, the All-Amer­i­can style is a small sleek car, while the ‘small’ cars have all the room for cre­ativ­ity.

West Isle En­ter­prises sells the base for the small cars, and the rest is up to the racer. There are around 80 of these cars that com­pete in the P.E.I. race.

Both the big and small cars are set to race July 29 in Tyne Val­ley for the sev­enth an­nual soap box races, the same day Hardy com­petes in Ohio.

SUBMITTED PHOTO

Bradley Hardy, shown in his Soap Box Derby car, is ready to race it in the Ohio In­ter­na­tional Cham­pi­onships on July 29.

ALYSHA CAMP­BELL/JOUR­NAL PI­O­NEER

Bradley Hardy is shown with Trevor Smith from the P.E.I. Bag Com­pany, the car’s spon­sor. The car Hardy will be rac­ing is al­ready on its way to Ohio where the In­ter­na­tional Cham­pi­onships are held.

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