Two Windsor Terrace brothers are preparing to face off in the Pinewood Derby World Championship later this month, in what is shaping up to be the greatest rivalry in car racing since Niki Lauda and James Hunt in the 1976 Formula One season.
Siblings Adam Bueno, 10, and Marcus Bueno, 8, are among 250 cub scouts nationwide who qualified for the prestigious tournament taking place on July 25, and those closest to them say the competition between the two is already growing fierce.
“They’re pretty competitive with each other,” said mom Crystal Bueno.
It is common for brothers to compete against each other in pack-level pinewood derbies — a cherished cub scouting tradition in which kids fashion small racing cars out of wood — according to a spokesman for the Boy Scouts of America. But two members of the same family qualifying for the World Championship is such a rare feat that there must be something special in the Bueno blood.
“To make it means they’re one of the best in the state, and some of the top 250 in the country,” said Cameron Hayes, a public relations rep for the youth organization.
The Bueno brothers, both students at PS 130, dedicated many hours to designing, building, and perfecting their racers — with a little help from their mom and cub master.
Marcus Bueno, a Webelos scout, themed his car for cartoon character Woody Woodpecker, and he thinks the character could give him the winning edge — although he acknowledges Woody can be pretty unpredictable.
“Woody Woodpecker is a bit of a trickster,” he said. “Sometimes he wins, sometimes he loses.”
Adam, a bear scout, shaped his like an arrow — both because he likes archery and because arrows move quickly, he said.
“My car is an arrow because arrows are fast and they’re pretty quick,” he said.
The boys and their cars had to battle it out in both their pack contest and a Brooklyn-wide trial to qualify — a nerve-wracking experience, they said, but one that has boosted their confidence for the big race to come,
“My favorite part was winning,” said Adam Bueno. “Next thing you know — you’re in the championship.”
Crystal Bueno said the boys are real chips off the old block — she was a Girl Guide, the Canadian equivalent of a girl scout, growing up in Nova Scotia, and the tradition dates back even further in her family’s history.
She says scouting has gives her sons a chance to meet new people and develop new skills they might not otherwise get growing up in the city.
“They’re getting to try a lot of new things that they wouldn’t be able to do in an urban environment like pinewood derbies, learning to cook outdoors, marching in parades,” she said.
Go cheer on Marcus and Adam at the Pinewood Derby World Championship at Times Square [Between W. 43rd and 44th streets on Broadway in Manhattan, (212) 242–1100, www.bsa-g