Supplement to “Super Farm Tractors Pull Their Weight”
If the adrenaline rush of big machines and big crowds appeals to you, Gregg Randall, general manager of the National Tractor Pullers Association (NTPA), has some advice on how to get started.
“I believe that if you are interested in becoming a competitor in this great sport, you need to do some research,” he says. “Go to some events, talk to those in the sport. You can also find a wealth of information on NTPA’s Web site at www.ntpapull.com.”
Of course, you’ll need a tractor, and Randall says this is a great time of year to purchase one.
“There are more pulling vehicles available between the fall and springtime of the year than any other,” he says. “Some pullers are rebuilding, while some may be exiting it altogether. Our monthly magazine The Puller has a classified section each month, and the fall/winter magazines have a lot more for sale, so now is a great time to buy a vehicle already complete, and get into pulling without investing quite a bit more to custom build.”
The type of tractor you choose will determine the category you compete in. There are 12 categories recognized by NTPA: Unlimited, Modifieds, SS Open, SS Diesel, Light SS, Pro Stock, SMFWD, FWD, TWD, Super Semi, Mini, and Super Farm.
There are also different types of events. Most competitors start at the state level. Fortunately, there are numerous events in Kentucky and surrounding states. Check NTPA’s Web site for upcoming events. Not all events are sponsored by NTPA but it is the largest sanctioning body in the United States. Above the state level, NTPA hosts the Regional National and Grand National. Each level has their own license. Either license will allow you to compete at either level, but you only accumulate points for the level you are licensed.
You’ll also need a rulebook. It includes information about each category of tractor, what equipment is legal and illegal, and explains event operations and the NTPA point system. To order a 2008 NTPA rulebook, call NTPA at (614) 436-1761 or mail $8 to WPI/NTPA, 6155-B Huntley Road, Columbus, OH 43229. You may also order by e-mail at email@example.com using credit card information.
To read the Kentucky Living January 2008 feature that goes along with this supplement,go to Super Farm Tractors Pull Their Weight