Pinewood Derby Championship Finishes in Seconds at Seton Scout Reservation

Pack 35 Webelos Scout and Championship winner Austin Sciulla with his father and winning car at the Pinewood Derby Championship at Seton Scout Reservation in Greenwich. Photo Credit: Denise Savageau

Pack 35 Webelos Scout and Championship winner Austin Sciulla with his father and winning car at the Pinewood Derby Championship at Seton Scout Reservation in Greenwich. Photo Credit: Denise Savageau

Each of the nine Cub Scout Packs across Greenwich sent their top three Pack finalists to compete in the Greenwich Council Pinewood Derby Championship that took place on Saturday at Seton Scout Reservation.

“We were honored to represent Pack 35 in a close and exciting finals,” said Augie Sciulla, father of first place winner Austin.

“I have grown to thoroughly enjoy the challenge of building a fast car, learning about physics and engineering, and bonding together, father and son,” he said.

Austin’s car was one of the few cars to race below 2.6 seconds on the 40-foot electronic racetrack.

Rich DiPreta, championship M.C. and Cubmaster for Pack 23 looks back on his Pinewood Derby experience.

Ray Garrsion, District Director helps Austin Sciulla retrieve his car from the finish line at the Pinewood Derby Championship at Seton Scout Reservation in Greenwich. Photo Credit: Denise Savageau

Ray Garrsion, District Director helps Austin Sciulla retrieve his car from the finish line at the Pinewood Derby Championship at Seton Scout Reservation in Greenwich. Photo Credit: Denise Savageau

“As a former Scout, it was exciting to see the passing of the Pinewood Derby from one generation to the next.  Unlike when I was a Scout and we eyeballed the winner of each race, Greenwich Council computerized the races, which really made a difference as some races were won by .001 of a second,” DiPreta said.  The 2017 championship turned out some of the fastest times in years.

  • 1st place winner, Pack 35 Webelos Scout Austin Sciulla 2.5992 sec
  • 2nd place winner, Pack 20 Webelos Scout Jack Rossi 2.6021 sec
  • 3rd place winner, Pack 35 Tiger Scout Owen Kennedy 2.6140 sec

Started by a Cubmaster in California in 1953, the Pinewood Derby is one of the highlights of the year for Cub Scouts.

The program builds character and bonds of friendship for the young boys that  participate.

Cub Scouts check their times at the Pinewood Derby Championship at Seton Scout Reservation in Greenwich. Photo credit: Heather Brown

Kevin O’Shea, Council Scout Executive with top 3 finalists (L to R) 3rd place, Pack 35 Tiger Scout Owen Kennedy, 2nd place, Pack 20 Webelos Scout Jack Rossi, and 1st place Pack 35 Webelos Scout Austin Sciulla at the Pinewood Derby Championship at Seton Scout Reservation in Greenwich. Photo credit: Heather Brown

Kevin O’Shea, Council Scout Executive with top 3 finalists (L to R) 3rd place, Pack 35 Tiger Scout Owen Kennedy, 2nd place, Pack 20 Webelos Scout Jack Rossi, and 1st place Pack 35 Webelos Scout Austin Sciulla at the Pinewood Derby Championship at Seton Scout Reservation in Greenwich. Photo: Heather Brown

Following the derby rules and cheering on friends as they race against each other teaches sportsmanship and good citizenship.

Personal achievement comes to any boy who picks up a woodworking tool and shapes raw wood into a sleek design.

Family understanding is enhanced because building a Pinewood Derby car puts the boy and his mom, dad, or other adult partner into a close and sometimes intense learning experience over, potentially, many hours.

Adventure, leadership, service and learning, especially in the outdoors, have remained essential to the Greenwich Scouting experience since its inception in 1912.  Nearly 1,750 local youth participate in fun programs, such as the Fishing Derby, run by 250 dedicated volunteers, all of which help prepare local boys and girls for life.

With over 20 partnering organizations and Cub Scouting, Boy Scouting, Venturing and Exploring opportunities in Greenwich, Connecticut, there’s never been a better time to join the Scouting community.  For more information about local Scouting visit www.GreenwichScouting.org.

Twenty-two cars raced at the Pinewood Derby Championship at Seton Scout Reservation in Greenwich. Photo Credit: Denise Savageau