Pinewood Derby

Workshop | Jan. 6th
Check-in | Jan. 26th
Race Day | Jan. 27th

The Pinewood Derby is a cub scouting tradition. Although it is a competitive event and awards are given, the intent of the derby is to provide each scout the opportunity to do their best while having fun competing and cheering on their fellow scouts.

The key lessons that the scouts should take away from the derby:

Templates (Sourced from


The workshop is scheduled for January 6th, 2024 from 8-12 in the church gym. Use the sign-up sheet to reserve your scout's spot now.  Slots are available to 2 scouts in 20 minute increments.  Walk-ins are welcome, but it's requested that all walk-ins defer equipment usage to those with a reserved time.

We're also seeking adult volunteers to help with setup, man the band saw and sanding stations, and finally for clean-up.  Sign-up for these roles is included in the same sign-up form as reserving a slot for your scout.


The success of the Derby Race is highly dependent on many volunteers to help it run smoothly.  Work for the event starts on Thursday 1/25 with setting up the track and getting everything prepped and ready.  Then, on Friday 1/26, check-ins begin and volunteers are needed to assist with getting all cars registered.  This finally culminates in race day on Saturday 1/27 with volunteers needed to manage the derby.  Walk-in volunteers are always welcome, but to help delegate responsibility, we have a sign-up form to help volunteers jump right in to managing various tasks needed to run the race. 

Pack Derby Rules

The following rules are set forth to provide a fair and fun Pinewood Derby for Cub Scouts of all ages. Some of the rules are to allow the cars to fit the track, while others are to encourage craftsmanship among older and younger scouts using the same materials. All cars must pass inspection to qualify for the race. The inspection points are as follows:

To maximize fun and fairness, the derby will be conducted so that each boy will race a minimum of 4 heats and will use a different lane in each heat. 

Scouts will race by rank and there will be six rank winners (Lion, Tiger, Wolf, Bear, Webelos I, and Webelos II). The fastest car from each rank (6 cars), plus the next 14 fastest cars will be allowed to compete in the Pack Championship. Scouts will also be judged and awarded for the following categories: “Fastest Looking”, “Most Creative” and “Most Patriotic”. 

The goal of the pinewood derby is to have fun, not only racing, but in building the cars! Encourage your boy to do as much himself as possible, but feel free to help, particularly where power tools are concerned. It is fun to let your Cub Scout choose the design, and you can help him realize it!

Car Inspection and Check-in

Cars shall be checked in on Friday evening before race day. The official scale to be used for race-day will be available and calibrated to ensure accuracy. Additionally, if desired, you will be able to make practice runs once track setup is complete. Be sure to bring (though some will likely be available) a drill, weights and glue as deemed necessary for any adjustments which may be required.

Car Inspection List


How is the derby ran?

A race will consist of multiple heats to allow each racer to run 4 times, once on each lane of the track.  The racers qualifying time will be based on their 3 fastest times (dropping the slowest time).

The derby is comprised of an optional sibling/parent race and 6 separate den races and finishing with the grand prix.  The number of entries for siblings and parents will determine whether there is 1 or 2 additional races. The races lead off with the Parent/sibling races, followed by Arrow of Lights and ending with the Lions as the final qualifying race.  The 20 fastest times across all the qualifying races will be eligible to compete in the Grand Prix.

Participants will have access to their vehicles before the Grand Prix starts to make any final adjustments (adding graphite, adjusting wheels and so on so long as their car remains eligible per the check-in rules).  

NOTE 1: The order of the races is intentional.  Any race day challenges will be sorted out with the non-scout races at the beginning and the youngest scout's race will be closest to the Grand Prix, offering a shorter derby day to them.

NOTE 2: While parents may qualify and run in the grand prix, they won't be eligible to receive a trophy which will be handed down to the next fastest time.  However, this rule does not apply to siblings.

Can parents / siblings race?

Absolutely!  We encourage all to have fun and join in, but be sure you don't forget to email to register and receive your car entry number needed for check-in.  Also, check out the FAQ 'How is the derby ran?' for more details on the parent/sibling races.

Can I pick my own car number?

Yes and no.  We aim to run an efficient race and part of that involves keeping the cars organized.  Given that we run multiple races, the first digit is used to represent the qualifying race the car is entered in.  However, the last 2 digits are sequentially assigned based on last name.  If you have a specific desired number, please contact to request your number and we'll attempt to fulfill any requests we can.

Can I use other wheels than those in the kit?

You must use official BSA wheels like those provided in the kit.  However, the Scout Shop does offer alternative wheel colors that are BSA approved.  You may purchase and use these alternatives if desired, but other wheel options are not allowed.

Can I enter multiple cars for the derby?

All entries must have been created by the participant in the month(s) leading up to the derby, and previous year's cars may not be reused.  However, if a participant would like to submit both a race car and a show car (for the non-race awards) please contact to ensure both cars are registered.  At this time, we do not allow multiple race entries by a single participant, but you're welcome to use the track on check-in day to select the faster car if you intend to build race cars.

2024 Results