July 31, 2023

Local racer wins world Soap Box Derby title

Stanwood-Camano racer Bella Siddle, 13, won the World Title at the 85th All-American Soap Box Derby in Akron, Ohio, on July 22.

Stanwood-Camano racer Bella Siddle, 13, won the World Title at the 85th All-American Soap Box Derby in Akron, Ohio, on July 22.

Siddle made her way to Akron after winning the masters division at the Stanwood-Camano Soap Box Derby at Arrowhead Ranch in June.

This wasn’t Siddle’s first championship — she has been racing for years.

Siddle won the All-American Soap Box Derby rally stock division in 2021, making her the first racer from Washington to win a national title since David Krussow of Tacoma in 1966. Before that, in 2019, she won the local race’s stock division.

The differences in division mostly depend on experience, age and car type, according to a news release from the All-American Soap Box Derby.

• Stock Division: Racers age 7-13 compete in cars built from kits, which assist newcomers by providing a step-by-step assembly of a basic- style car.

• Super Stock Division: Racers age 9-18 are given the opportunity to expand their knowledge and build a larger, heavier model car, also from a kit.

• Masters Division: Racers age 10-20 compete in sleeker, more sophisticated cars — also built from kits.

Soap Box Derbys throughout the country encourage science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills, while encouraging mentorship and family collaboration throughout the car-building process.

Most racers and family members spend weeks attending driving and building clinics in addition to working on their cars, many of which are sponsored by local businesses.

According to the release, more than 320 boys and girls from across the U.S., Canada and Japan participated this year. More than $36,000 in college scholarships were awarded to winners.

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