By Mick Jensen
Next month’s Mayfield A & P Show is set to pull in the crowds with a brand new attraction – a tractor pull event.
Three tractor classes – pre 1985, standard and modified – are lined up for the popular show, with farmers, contractors and enthusiasts invited to test their skills, pulling power and competitive natures.
Heats will be held on the Friday and the finals on show day, March 10.
A display of modified tractors is also being lined up as an added attraction at the 93rd show.
Mayfield A & P president Martin Fleming said the tractor pull attraction had been discussed two years ago and was now shaping up nicely.
“We’re always keen on looking at adding a new dimension or attraction and one of our members proposed the pull.
“There’s been no formal tractor pull event in Canterbury since 2009 and we believe there will be a lot of interest in it, both from a crowd and competitor perspective.”
Mr Fleming said the event would be entirely managed by Tractor Pull New Zealand, which promoted tractor pulling as a dynamic and entertaining class of motor sport.
An informative running commentary would be provided to give an insight into the sport, Mr Fleming said.
The origins of tractor pulling date back to around 1860s when farmers would challenge one another to prove who had the strongest horse.
A horse would often pull a barn door down a course and as it progressed, people would step on the door until the horse could no longer drag it. The horse pulling the most people won the contest.
Today the horse has been replaced with horsepower and the door with a computer controlled sled, but the concept remains the same – he who pulls the most and the furthest wins.
A paddock next to the Mayfield A & P Showgrounds will be used for the tractor pull attraction.
Martin Fleming said his committee was excited to have it on the show programme.
“Tractor pulling is done on weight not horse power, so the driver’s skill is key. It won’t be easy to predict who will win.”
Entry forms for the tractor pull can be found on the tractorpull.co.nz website, or via the Mayfield A & P Association Facebook page.
Entry costs $100, but includes a free dynatest from major sponsor DPS and also entry to the show.