GRAVITY RACING CHALLENGE - Ohio Afterschool Network

Where STEM Learning Meets Derby Track
It's been called,
"The Greatest Amateur Racing
Event in the World".
"The World’s Gravity Grand Prix”
But to most of the more
than a million youngsters
from around the globe who have
built and raced their cars,
it‘s just the "Soap Box Derby."
Soap Box Derby Jeopardy
In what year and where was the first Soap Box Derby Race held?
How many kids raced in the first race and how many spectators came?
In what year did the first girl race?
To further the International Soap Box Derby’s
mission is to educate and inspire all youth
through fair and honest gravity racing
competition and mentorship….
The Gravity Racing Challenge
was developed to promote
the STEM Initiative in
K-12 education worldwide.
Today GRC resources and materials are being used
by K-12 educators and students in 13 states and
worldwide in classrooms, summer, and after school
programs in:
New Zealand
New York
North Carolina
The Gravity Racing Challenge provides After
School Programs different student resources &
learning opportunities in two distinct areas….
First the Gravity Racing Challenge STEM Team Competitions
which is hosted each May at Derby Track in Akron, Ohio.
First held in 2010, the Gravity Racing Challenge STEM Team Competition
continues to experience tremendous growth…
2010 - First school team Soap Box Derby race at Derby Downs
2 teams from the National Inventors Hall of Fame
2011 - First Gravity Racing Challenge School Team Competition
9 teams from Akron area (6 schools)
2012 - 65 teams from Ohio (450 students & educators from 30
schools) - Additional GRC Team STEM Competitions
offered included photography, infomercial, press release
2013 - 90 teams from Ohio; (over 700 students & educators from 42 schools)
Each team has 2 coaches, 3-10 team members (driver, alternate
driver, pit crew, and media specialists) who:
• Construct a soap box car from a kit
• Create a design for their Team t-shirts and banner
• Decide which optional STEM Competitions to do:
Press Release
Mini Soap Box Derby Car Competition
During this GRC Competition in May,
Teams have the opportunity to
parade down Derby Track….
Compete against Teams from across Ohio and
surrounding states.
Participate in interactive STEM booths
University of Akron
Making Silly Putty
Honda Booth
Racing Lego Cars
Corsair Flying Association
Learning to Pilot a Plane
With this program, students use a fun, engaging
Project Activity Booklets which guides them through…
Mini Soap Box Car Construction
Mini Soap Box
Car Construction
How to Use Measuring Tools and the
Mini Car Construction Kits
How to run the Race
using a
Mini Soap Box
Derby Track!
Educators’ feedback to Gravity Racing
Challenge Programs & Resources:
Standards Aligned
Across the Curriculum
Team Building
Develops Life & Career Skills
Meaningful & Fun
Soap Box Derby Car Construction Information:
Visit: Click on You Tube.
Click on Car Build Videos 1, 2, and 3
To learn more
about the
Gravity Racing
Challenge, visit
our website at:
and click on
The team experience in the Soap Box Derby is
like none I have ever experienced before. Soap
box derby requires strong collaboration and
team values. Teamwork is vital to building a
successful car because almost everything
requires a partner or a group. The ingenuity of
designing the car and the problem solving skills
required to troubleshoot are all key skills we
will use in life regardless of the career paths we
choose in the future.
By: Kartik Sastry
Westlake H.S.
Or contact Linda Hubbell, Education Program Director, International Soap Box Derby at:
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 740-817-0345
5th Annual Gravity Racing Challenge Team Competition in Akron, Ohio will be held on May 17, 2014.
Team Registration is currently open and is limited.

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