Finlay MacDonald

Digital Designer based in the North East of Scotland, specialised in graphic design, 3D modelling and animation, games development and mobile application development.

Red Bull Soapbox Race, London 2015 + 2017

Brief:

Create a gravity powered cart to race down Alexandra Palace for the Red Bull Soapbox Race based in London. The 2015 soapbox is based off of Dick Dastardly’s Mean Machine from Wacky Races. The 2017 soapbox is based off the flying motorbike from the Harry Potter Series.

Creating the Soapbox:

For both races I helped create the soapboxes and was duty medic during production (there was only 1 minor incident). I had a greater involvement in the 2017 cart and rode down as a passenger on the motorbike. I prepared, cut and welded the steel to make the chassis. I also helped mould fiberglass, paint the carts and Papier-mâchéd where required.

Costume:

As I was to be the passenger, I was tasked to create the 10ft coat that would be needed for the giant Hagrid. Starting from an old leather couch, I first had to pick all the seams to get the leather into manageable sections. I tried hand sewing for a start, but the leather was too difficult to pierce. I borrowed an old sewing machine to speed up the process considerably.

Results:

The 2015 run was very successful with the 3rd fastest time and the 2nd fastest speed down the course reaching a blazing 29mph.

The 2017 run didn’t go quite as well, as a wheel buckled fairly early into the run and in the process kept me pinned to the motorbike. The soapbox did reach the end with a little pushing. Overall we came 28th out of around 69 teams due to high scores for performance and style.