Thrills and spills of Arva Soapbox Challenge draws large crowds

It’s not every day of the week you get the chance to see high flying carts and buggies screeching through the streets of a normally busy town.

It’s not every day of the week you get the chance to see high flying carts and buggies screeching through the streets of a normally busy town.

But that’s precisely what locals in the otherwise bustling town of Arva were treated to recently as dozens of racing enthusiasts took part in the much anticipated Arva Soapbox Challenge 2012.

Involving makeshift wagons and carriers hand-crafted by over 20 hopeful participants, in the end Drumlish man Eamon Brady saw off Moyne’s Peter Donohoe and Noel Ellis from Arva to claim the event’s top honour.

The distinction of most innovative award, meanwhile, went the way of Smear’s Joe Curran who fended off a posse of rivals to claim the first ever staging of the aptly named ‘Ball Race’.

Later that evening, a fancy dress party took place in the Breffni Arms Hotel with the most eye-catching costume being worn by Laura Magarahan and Steward Moynan.

A couple of weeks on from the event, organisers have so far managed to raise in the region of €3,000, the proceeds of which are expected to go to Kildare based Barretstown Children’s Charity.

“We ran it (soapbox) last year as well and hopefully will run it again in August next year,” said Brian Murtagh, one of the driving forces behind this year’s event. “I suppose people are getting good craic out of it which is great to see.”

A cheque presentation to Barrestown, organisers revealed this week, is likely to take place over the coming weeks once all monies from the event have been collected.

The following is a list of participants who took part on the day: Brian Harwood, Emmet Sloane, Shane McEntee, Alfie Denneny, Ryan Magarahan, Dylan Murphy, David Smith, Bernard Galligan, Peter Donohoe, Dermot Feeney, Mark Harkness, Nigel Kells, Michael Reynolds, David Kelleher, Eamon Brady, Noel Ellis, Declan Corrigan, Brian Murtagh, Hughie Martin, Barry Kiernan, Enda Boylan and Declan Corrigan.