Scores of spectators showed up to watch the second annual Soap Box Derby in front of Landels Elementary School last weekend, where kids raced in hand-built cars powered only by gravity.
In a test of skill Sunday, kids ages 8 to 17 reached speeds of up to 24 miles per hour as they barreled down the overpass grade spanning Highway 237. The trickiest part was in negotiating the subtle crown of the street to attain the highest speeds possible.
The winner of the Stock class, which features the youngest drivers, was Mountain View resident Alison Parman. Elliott Martinez of San Jose won the Super Stock class, and in the Super Kids division, which pairs a disabled child with a driver, the winner was Pauleen Ugalde.
Then there was the first-ever Mayor's Cup, in which Mayor Tom Means, Vice Mayor Margaret Abe-Koga and officials from four neighboring cities vied for the title. Means lost by a few feet in the semifinals to Art Williams of Air Systems Incorporated, one of two race sponsors who competed. Cupertino Mayor Dolly Sandoval (who had beaten Abe-Koga in the semifinals) went on to beat Williams in the final race.
"Tom thinks he has weight going for him, but I'm more streamlined than Tom," Sandoval said before the race.
Eliminated earlier in the Mayor's Cup were Campbell council member Evan Low, Santa Clara Mayor Patty Mahan, Sunnyvale Mayor Tony Spitaleri and Palo Alto Elks Club "exalted ruler" Bob Fleck.
A total of 38 cars entered the race, including six Super Kids cars, up from 37 last year.