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Truck and tractor pulls draw in large crowds
Grampa John of Tres Pinos pulls 191 feet for a sixth-place finish in the 4 X 4 Local 4,500 pound Class at the truck and tractor pull event at the Stanislaus County Fair on Saturday. - photo by CHHUN SUN / The Journal
It wasn’t a typical day at the Stanislaus County Fair on Saturday evening, as the sun was making its slow descent in the west. The drivers sat in their vehicles that lined up in a row looking almost endless, waiting for a turn.
Chaos was about to take place.
It’s a unique experience, one that annually attracts local fans to the FoodMaxx Arena to watch large trucks and tractors do the unbelievable, pulling an incredible amount of weight hundreds of feet through what seems to be an unwilling part of the earth. But Saturday’s spectators seemed to enjoy the event, yelling and screaming as if it could help the drivers to pull through — despite the fact that the vehicles generated an abundance of smoke and noise, in addition to kicking up some dirt.
This was the largest tractor pull event on the West Coast, one of the public-address announcers said. There were some 150 participants competing in 15 different weight classes, thanks to Valley Tractor Pullers Association and John Shipman Motorsports joining together to put on a show that tested the engines and power of the vehicles.
The drivers used “sleds,” which describes the weight transfer machines that are built on truck-like frames with axles and a sled pan on the front, to pull the heavy drag along the dirt. The pull is usually between 200 to 300 feet, depending on the weight class and power behind the engine.
In all, it was a great spectacle.
To contact Chhun Sun, e-mail or call 634-9141 ext. 2041.