Beautiful weather greeted the participants and audience of the 18th Annual Big Hill Boxcart Derby on November 26, as the spectators were witnesses of an historic day with the first ever all female final for the Adult Downhill and the first ever female overall champion.
After a series of trial runs participants were ready to get down to business with a variety of box carts; some designed for speed and some with a focus on flair in many shapes, colours and themes creatively designed with some matching the drivers’ costumes as they zoomed toward the finish line.
Supporters filled up on the usual fare of hamburgers, hot dogs, drinks and sweets as they cheered on their favourite racers along on the 800-foot course. There were a variety of other treats and drinks, including the famous “swiggle” on sale as well.
This year’s Derby had ten Junior and ten Adult entries utilizing a total of fourteen carts as some carts were registered in both classes. Contestants came from Hope Town, Marsh Harbour, Great Guana Cay as well as a couple second home owners on Elbow Cay.
In the junior downhill category, Maitland Lowe Jr. placed first in a fast boxcart for ARSS (Abaco Rage Sailing Syndicate) followed in second place by Ryan Knowles in the HG Christie Cart and Blake Cash in the Flaming Runner bringing in third place.
In the adult downhill category Nicky Warshauer captured first place in Sundance Marine’s “Mayday”; following in second place was Jenna Dverfler in Sundance Marine’s Pink ; finishing out the top three was Brady Cobb in the Sundance Marine’s Red.
The more challenging slalom category was also dominated by Sundance Marine’s boxcarts with Nicky Warshauer taking first place in the “Mayday”. In second place was the Pink cart driven by Eric and rounding out the top three was Jenna Dverfler in the Pink cart.
In the final category for showmanship the Bahamas Boxcart Association split the category between Junior and Adult for the first time. The competition was stiff but the judges settled on the following results:
In the junior class Teddy Ziskind’s “Black Magic” took top prize, followed by Savannah Pritchard’s “Jokes All Day” and Casey Roberts’ “Nippers”.
In the adult class Dave Pahl’s “Rat Sass” claimed top marks, with Frankie Knowles’ Abaco T’s placing second and in third place was Johnny Roberts’ “Nippers”.
After two first place finishes, the overall winner and King (Queen) of the Hill for 2016 is Nicky Warshauer and the Sundance Marine White “Mayday” make her the first female to win the overall competition.
According to Organizer Stafford Patterson of the Bahamas Boxcart Association, funds raised will benefit the Abaco Swim Club and the Hope Town Primary School.