Most lock boxes give a max of 5 lobi crystals bar the Ferengi Lock box. That will give you up to 20 lobi crystals!!!!! So for those of you who are a tad off spending the money (or getting keys and boxes for free in game through grinding) on a few lock boxes will get you the ship. You can sell the rest of the lock box contents on the exchange and make your money back in EC.
As for the race itself, honestly I have read many a thread whereby players have complained in general about how hard it is. (not that you are, just saying) I dunno of the majority of you realize it but you can get Q to transform you into a four legged beastie of some sort (or an Undine) and run the race that way. No slipping and easier to control. Not to mention, four legs are quicker than two. There is nothing to the race and this is coming from someone who is not a 'gamer' by definition.
As for the ship, it is worth the grind. I got mine earlier than most because I had so much lobi saved up. In any case, best of luck.