Menifee Sets 'Little Rascals' Loose in Soap Box Derby
Kyle Davis is all business as he waits to head downhill in his White Lightning race car. Eric ...
|Kyle Davis is all business as he waits to head downhill in his White Lightning race car.|
"Ryan (Eric's son) won in a fiberglass car last year, but they changed the rules so you can't run a fiberglass car anymore," said Eric Johnson of Johnson's Auto Service in Menifee. "I wanted to make it look like the Little Rascals -- you know, an old school street racer."
|Rust Bucket team members (from left, back row) Ryan Moore, Nick Johnson, Eric Johnson, Richard Johnson and Ryder Lawrence (in front).|
About 45 drivers -- mostly teenagers and younger -- took part in the event, bringing vehicles of all shapes and colors. There are fairly strict rules set down by the organizers at Valley-Wide Recreation, but the bottom line is simple: Build a car without an engine that will roll down the steep hill of Menifee Road toward Holland Road as fast as possible.
"It gives kids an opportunity to learn how to use tools," said Hemet resident Mike Percival (below), who was putting air in a tire before sending his 7-year-old grandson Daniel Hulse out to race in the Training Wheels Division. "I run an air conditioning business, and it's amazing to me how many young people come to work without knowing the right end of a screwdriver. In doing this, Daniel now knows everything about how one of these cars is put together.