Despite the warm weather, spectators of all ages came out to the Barton County Fair on Saturday to watch not only real-life tractor pulls, but also join in on the fun of the pedal tractor pulls.
“The Barton County Fair is a great time,” driver Justin Axman said. “This is my first year driving, but I have been tagging along with my dad for two years coming to the antique tractor pull and it’s always a lot of fun. Everyone here is really friendly and they do a great job putting on the pull for us.”
There were about 25 tractors registered for the antique tractor pull and there were plenty of people in the stands cheering on their favorites.
The pull was divided by the weight of the tractor, starting at 2,500 pounds and going up to around 10,000 pounds. The tractors have to be from 1960 or earlier in order to qualify for the pull and the drivers must be 18 years or older. The bigger the tractor, the more water was added to the sled to increase its weight to make it more challenging for the bigger machines.
“This is my second year coming to this pull and it’s always a good fair,” driver Shane Chaloupek said. “It is hard to find these tractor pulls these days. The younger kids are more interested in the truck pulls, so when I hear about an antique pull I am there. They are always a lot of fun and it’s great to see these old tractors still in operation.”
Another pull was taking place inside Expo II, where more tractors were trying to get to get to the finish line, but these were propelled by pedal power. The kids’ event was for children between the ages of 4 to 9 years old. There was also an adult pedal tractor event.
The youth tractor pull consisted of five different sized tractors, one for each age group. The older the group, the bigger the tractors, and more weight was added to the sled that was pulled behind it.
The top three qualifiers in each age group received a medal and qualified for the state championship that will be held at the Kansas State Fair in September.