A CARPENTER has built a “space rocket” to enter one of the wackiest races staged.

Ivor Vazquez, from Eastbourne, and his team have made the car for the Red Bull Soapbox Race.

The challenge, which tours Europe, comes to London’s Alexandra Palace on July 7.

The race is held every two years and is regarded as one of the wackiest and most entertaining road races.

Ivor and his crew, Lee Colcott, Andy Hudson and Barney White, met playing cricket for Eastbourne Martlets and decided to team up to take on the daunting challenge.

Ivor said: “It is really hard work making the car.

“Even though I’m a carpenter I have no engineering skills whatsoever.

“This year we have done a ‘rocket to Mars’.

“It’s a handmade rocket, quite green with lots of valves and cables.

“I entered the race two years ago as well. I made a giant cricket bat that shot round the course.

“And we managed to finish, even though the cricket bat exploded halfway down.

“The frame held together and that’s what got us to the end.

“There is a daredevil element to it but that’s what makes it fun

“This time I don’t think we are going to do a test run, it makes it more exciting.

“It will be glory or a glorious failure but I don’t mind crashing out.”

Ivor and the team set themselves a budget of just £100 to make their soapbox car.

And even though it is not yet complete he thinks they should be able to make that target.

He said: “Thanks to donations and favours from friends it looks like we’ve been able to make it on budget but there are professionals who spend loads on their soap cars.”

The group will travel to London the day before the race and put their car through the mandatory safety checks.

And they may also run through their pre-race routine.

The race is not only marked on who finishes the course quickest, but also on their entertainment routine before racing.

The routines are marked by judges and Ivor hopes their small piece of theatre will rank highly.

He said: “One of our crew is dressed as an alien and will come and attack us.

“We’ll have a bit of a gun fight and then we jump in the rocket and he chases us down the ramp.”

The race is in the form of time trials and is on a specially set up course which takes a minute or two to complete.

He said the crew will be delighted just to finish the race but have no expectations of a podium finish.