Hamster soapbox geared up for race day

The final touches are being made to fine-tune The Great Escape team’s soapbox kart ahead of Sunday’s big race at Alexandra Palace.

The team of staff and students from the Product Design course at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) have created a hamster-driven concept for their entry in the Red Bull Soapbox Race.

Soapbox kart IMG_6965

The mad-cap challenge on Sunday afternoon will see zany teams from across Britain racing their quirky home-made non-motorised soapboxes on a downhill track cheered on by thousands of onlookers.

The crash-filled spectacle will be broadcast from 5pm the same day on Dave TV, who recently sent a UMTV crew to DMU to film a profile piece on The Great Escape team.

Team captain Emily Hancock said: “It’s all gone fine and we’re looking forward to race day now.

“The soapbox is basically all finished and ready to go, even though we’ve all had to concentrate this week on displaying our work at the New Designers show in London.”

Their contraption has been built from the frames of two mountain bikes and is designed around the concept of a hamster in its wheel trying to escape from the vets.

soapbox TV team being filmed IMG_6783

Senior Product Design lecturer Nick Rowan will drive the vehicle - dressed in a hamster costume - with the rest of the team, graduating students Emily Hancock, Sarah Wharton and Glenn Byford, accompanying him dressed as vets.  

Course programme leader Alan Crummey has also played a key support role from the start of the project.

The Red Bull Soapbox Races are held all around the world and entries are judged not only on their speed on the track, but also on their showmanship and creativity – the more outrageous, preposterous and ostentatious the better.

Watch the crazy racing online on Dave TV and follow the team’s progress @TGESoapbox2017 on twitter.

Posted on Friday 7th July 2017

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