Photo courtesy of Life Enrichment Options
                                The annual Challenge Race returns to Issaquah for the 22nd year on July 27 at the Issaquah Community Center.

Photo courtesy of Life Enrichment Options The annual Challenge Race returns to Issaquah for the 22nd year on July 27 at the Issaquah Community Center.

Challenge Race returns to Issaquah

The annual event will take place at the Issaquah Community Center on July 27.

Life Enrichment Options (LEO) will be hosting its annual Challenge Series Race on July 27 at the Issaquah Community Center (301 Rainier Blvd. S.).

The gravity car race allows those with mental and physical disabilities the experience of a thrilling soapbox derby-type race while riding in a car piloted by a typically developing person who is 10 years or older. The co-driver must be no taller than 5 feet 2 inches and 130 pounds or less.

“We’d love to have the community come out and watch the race,” Challenge Race founder Leo Finnegan said. “There’s a lot of excitement… the more people, the more exciting and thrilling it is for the special needs kids.”

About 38 years ago Finnegan founded the race as a solution for his son Tim Finnegan who could not participate in a soapbox derby. Finnegan said his son — who is developmentally disabled — wanted to race, but he didn’t have the fine motor control to do so, and all he could do was watch his brother race.

Finnegan’s solution was to build an extra-wide derby car that could fit a driver and a passenger.

Now in its 22nd year, the Challenge Series Race is a free event designed for the whole family. Each racer will have the opportunity to race multiple times during the event. Two race sessions will be held, 9 to 10:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. to noon. Lunch and awards ceremony to follow.

“It’s pretty exciting to watch those kids have fun and see their big smiles after every race,” Finnegan said. “It keeps me coming back and it keeps me wanting to do it year after year… Special needs kids are the star of this show. They are no different than the regular kids. ”

For more information and to register see www.lifeenrichmentoptions.org or email name of co-driver and race session to info@lifeenrichmentoptions.org.

More in News

A proposal to make King County Metro fares free for low-income households could be approved in the coming months. File photo
King County considers free transit for low-income residents

The program would target those at or below 80 percent of the federal poverty level.

Issaquah family held hostage is released

Issaquah Police brought in the Crisis Negotiation Team to assist in hostage negotiation.

New Issaquah utility rates, assistance programs

Cost increase and low-income support in 2020.

Federal Way resident Mi’Chance Dunlap-Gittens, 17, died Jan. 27, 2017. Courtesy photo
Law enforcement challenges report on sting operation that killed Federal Way teen

King County Office of Law Enforcement Oversight’s findings rattle Sheriff’s Office, police union.

Unstable housing? Apply for Section 8

Applications open in February for housing vouchers

In 2018, the city of Seattle approved and then repealed a head tax within a month. It would have levied a $275 per employee tax on businesses grossing more than $20 million annually. Sound Publishing file photo
County head tax bill passes committee

Bill would let King County levy a tax on businesses to fund housing and address homelessness.

Gov. Jay Inslee signs the first bill of the 2020 legislative session into law. On the right stands the bill’s primary sponsor, Sen. Jamie Pedersen, D-Seattle, who is wearing a red tie. Photo by Cameron Sheppard, WNPA News Service
Gov. Inslee signs tax bill to help fund higher education

Law shifts a portion of the tax burden to large tech companies.

King County Metro’s battery-electric bus. Photo courtesy of kingcounty.gov
King County Metro bus fleet will be electrified by 2035

Future base in South King County would house hundreds of the zero-emission vehicles.

Three-quarters of the suicide deaths among children ages 10 to 14 are caused by firearms, according to a new report from the Firearm Injury and Policy Research Program at the University of Washington. File photo
King County studies youth gun violence amid rising suicides

It’s unclear what’s driving the trend.

A King County work crew clears a road near Preston on Feb. 7, 2020. Heavy rains appear to have caused multiple landslides along the road. Aaron Kunkler/staff photo
The future could look a lot like this year’s flood season

Climate change is expected to lead to more winter flooding in King County.

Theo Koshar, Janet McIntosh and Robin Kelley of the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery work to find road drains and clear them of leaves, outside the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery in Issaquah, WA on Feb. 6, 2020. Mitchell Atencio/Staff Photo
Rapid rainfall has led to flooding, impacting all parts of King County.

County warns residents to obey barricades for safety.

Newport Way Southwest between Front Street South and Wildwood Blvd Southwest is closed due to phase 4 flooding. Photo courtesy of City of Issaquah Twitter
Heavy rainfall leads to phase 4 flood warnings in Issaquah

The rainfall should be cresting by early afternoon and the flood warning is expected to be lifted by 6 p.m. tonight, according to the NWS.