ABG apprentice team wins Bridlington Soapbox Challenge
In between manufacturing world class finishing machines, A B Graphic (ABG) International has been busy elsewhere, this time on Bridlington seafront where it won its hometown’s super soapbox challenge in a cart designed and built by the firm’s apprentices.
The event, which drew crowds of around 20,000 spectators, involved 20 corporate teams racing their soapbox carts against each other down a specially prepared section of the town’s South Marine Drive, complete with security fencing and hay bales in place. Funded by the Yorkshire Coast BID to help boost visitors to the resort, the aim of the event was to raise money for a variety of charities and schools, with proceeds going to Bridlington RNLI, Yorkshire Air Ambulance (YAA) and more.
Used primarily to showcase the engineering skills of ABG’s apprentices, the construction of the cart began six months prior, with help from the company’s senior engineers using CAD design and milling machines. Local firms also assisted, with Scarborough based Don French Signs supplying the cart’s graphics, and Plastic Engineering Products in Hull, providing the cart’s plastic fairings.
On the day of the race itself, the ABG team was initially interviewed by the BBC before fending off strong competition to come first in the final race in a time of sub 27 seconds. During prizegiving, the team was awarded the winner’s trophy for its well deserved success.
Commenting on the event, ABG apprentice, Zac Williamson, said: ‘I enjoyed putting the wide range of skills I have learnt over the past two years to the test in a real life experience. Also, project management isn't something I have done before, so working alongside a senior engineer was really insightful and helped me to develop a new skill. I’d recommend the experience to any future apprentices as it has helped me enormously over the past six months.’