Race Rules

  1. Soap box cars must meet the Construction and Safety Guidelines as described herein.
  2. Please pre-register by September 9, 2023
  3. Your child must be born on or before September 15, 2017.
  4. Participants must be available and ready on race day at the starting location at 9:00 am and remain available to race at any
    time until all of his/her races are finished. Participants who are not available when required to race may be eliminated from further
  5. Cars may be inspected prior to each race to ensure they are deemed safe for racing. Ruling by the inspectors shall not be
    challenged. Cars rejected by the inspector must be removed immediately from the starting location.
  6. When racing, drivers must wear shoes and a helmet with chin strap.
  7. The race judges’ decisions are final and shall not be contested.
  8. By virtue of their paid-up registration, participants, or the parents or guardians of participant who are minors, have agreed to render harmless the Harriston Minto Agricultural Society Soap Box Derby and volunteers assisting with the Harriston Minto Agricultural Society Soap Box Derby and The Town of Minto of any consequences arising from participation in the derby.

Soapbox Cars

The design of the cars is up to the builders. The Soap Box Derby is a community event in conjunction with the Harriston-Minto Fall Fair to bring family, businesses and the community together for a day of fun, exciting competition, a family project for 6 years of age & up. Its’s an opportunity to build and race your own race car, a unique program that encourages close adult-youth activities while building & racing a car.

Race Rules & Car Specifications

Home-Built Soapbox Car Specifications

  1. Soapbox cars are powered by gravity only – NO ENGINES OR MOTORS
  2. The driver must sit in the car, facing forward and control the car using only hands and feet.
  3. VERY IMPORTANT. The car must fit the driver. Drivers must be able to get in and out of the car easily and operate steering and braking in the normal seated position without stretching or straining.
  4. The centre of gravity, with the driver in place, should be as low as possible without violating the minimum road clearance (2.5”) specification
    (including brake)
  5. Cars must have four wheels. Minimum diameter is six inches.
  6. Measures must be taken to prevent wheels from departing the cart when in use. Use cotter pins or other positive means to keep the wheels
    in place.
  7. Fasteners used in the steering and brake systems must be prevented from loosening when in use by the use of lock nuts, cotter pins, wire
    tying or other means.
  8. Road clearance to any part of the car, including fasteners, must be 2.5” minimum.
  9. Minimize front and rear overhang to prevent getting hung up on the starting ramps.
  10. All basic structure parts must be securely fastened to each other using bolts, screws or other suitable hardware. Plywood and solid wood are
    permitted structural materials. Particle or strand type board is not permitted for any structural part. The basic structure is defined as the chassis
    on which the driver sits and to which the axles, steering and brake mechanisms, and body shell are attached. The car body or shell may part of
    the basic structure. It must be made of rigid impact resistant material.
  11. Back and forth movement of either front wheel shall be limited to one inch. Stops must be installed to prevent over-steering. Steering
    movement must be smooth.
  12. The cars must have a breaking system capable of slowing the car to a smooth, short and safe straight line stop without damaging the road
    surface. If using drag clutches, the part touching the road must be made of wood or rubber.
  13. Cable links used in steering and brake systems must be secured and not slip under stress.
  14. Adjusting hardware such as turnbuckles must be lock-wired in the final adjusting position.
  15. The driver’s lower torso, legs and feet should be within the body shell. The drivers should not be able to contact the road surface or the
    wheels when seated in the normal operating position in the car.
  16. There shall be no exposed sharp edges or points. Exposed edges that may be contacted by the driver shall be smooth. Protective cushioning
    material may also be fitted.
  17. Cars MUST have hooks on the front and back strong enough to pull the cars back up the hill.


Most important … Have FUN building your Soap Box Car and have FUN spending quality time with your friends and family!