LIMA — So maybe it was supposed to be for little children and just for fun.
Try explaining that to some of the children.
Friends Braiden Johnson and Lucas King singled each other out, saying they were going to take the other out. Mackenzie Vasquez predicted victory. One other child even called for the “ultimate destruction” of all incomers.
However, as serious as some of those faces may have been, they quickly turned to smiles as 19 children participated in the first Power Wheels Demolition Derby during the Allen County Fair. No official winner was declared as all drivers were given a trophy for their participation.
Event organizer Tim Clark said the event had several different goals.
“A lot of these kids are here with their dads that participate in the demolition derby,” Clark said. “The kids come with them and they see their fathers doing it and they want to do it too. The kids love it and they have a lot of fun.”
Clark said the event is now featured at the majority of county fairs in Ohio and that it was decided to finally try it in Allen County. He said it was important for the future of the demolition derby sport.
“This way we can get the kids excited for when they become adults,” he said. “This gets them interested and they stay interested.”
Most of the drivers had painted their vehicles menacing black, dark green or other terrorizing colors, though the few girls participating gave it a feminine flair with their pink Barbie Jeeps and the such. Most drivers agreed that they had been influenced by their fathers when deciding to participate. Some drivers even wore sponsor T-shirts or had sponsor stickers on their vehicles.
Lucas, 6, said he had participated in Power Wheel derbies before.
“My father talked me into it,” Lucas said, “but I like doing it. While standing next to his friend Braiden, both were asked who they thought would win. Simultaneously, both exclaimed, “I will.”
Mackenzie said she did not have a long, thought-out plan on how she would approach the race.
“I am just going to go out there and hit everything I can,” she said.