Arbutus Fourth of July

Payton Sellman, 7, of Arbutus, competes in the annual soap box derby on Elm Road. Sellman was competing in the race for the first time. She flipped her car over during her first run, but was all smiles a few hours later in the Arbutus parade. (Staff photo by Sarah Pastrana / July 4, 2012)

Nine racers took to the hill at Elm and Oakland roads Wednesday morning for the 46th annual Arbutus Soap Box Derby as part of the town's Fourth of July celebration.

T. J. Sprankle, an Arbutus resident who has organized the event for the past three years, said it had "lots of smiles and fun."

Awards for first-, second- and third-place finishers in two categories of tire size were presented to the competitors as were three special awards, Sprankle said Wednesday evening.

In the 10-inch tire class, Austin Paugh beat out the other racers to take first place. Jason Bosley and Payton Sellman finished second and third, respectively.


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Dragan Hornatno took home first place In the 6-inch tire class. Gunnar Rippee and Owen Coffee finished behind him, earning second and third place, respectively.

Hornatno also picked up the Most Creative Award for his car, which was red, white and blue and had an internal stereo, Sprankle said.

The Good Sport Award went to Bryce Baquol.

Caesar Arca, the great grandson of Paul Arca, the founder of the local soap box derby, received the Charlie Brown Hard Luck Award after he hit a curb and decided not to race any more.

Participation in this year's event was up slightly from last year's field of eight racers.

In Sprankle's first year as organizer, the derby had a dozen racers.

"Several of (the drivers) were brand new," Sprankle said of this year's crew. "That was a fun thing."