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Tractor pulling and baseball have at least one thing in common here in Michigan; either can be a pretty chancy proposition in the month of April. There is no weather phenomenon that is totally out of the question, even at the end of the month. We have had snow-outs, rain-outs, days that were extremely hot, and everything in between. This year’s opening weekend at the MMOGTA tracks ended up being a split decision, from the weather standpoint, with Saturday remaining cold, gray, and windy, while Sunday felt a lot more like tractor pulling season should feel. One for two….. could have been worse.
Visitors will note a few changes to the schedule this year, with each of our monthly pulls being expanded into a 2-day weekend. On each of the designated Saturdays, we are staging a dead weight pull, while the Sunday events are T-Sled only. This allows more pulling opportunities for those who compete in both disciplines, allows the kitchen staff to get 2 days of business with only one set-up. As a bonus, once the season is under way, it will also be a nice camping weekend for those who enjoy that experience. It’s a win, win, win, as far as I can see, as long as the track can be readily re-fitted from one day to the next. After all, we have been doing that for years during the August show.
The 2012 opening weekend was fairly well attended, with about 39 tractors fielded for the dead weight on Saturday, while the T-Sled posted about 141 hooks. Given the less than ideal weather on Saturday, and the fact that many farmers were busy in the fields, we judged the 2-day weekend to be a success by all measures.
After the long winter hiatus, it’s always fun to see the new, and the newly re-engineered tractors, as well as the familiar units. As always, though, the chance to reconnect with all those familiar faces after 6 months is a huge part of the appeal when yet another Opening Day at the Track rolls around. Sure, it’s a lot of work, and most of us can look out our windows and see tractors every day, but we all know it’s the people that make it fun !
We leave you with a few random pics from the weekend
(click individual photos to enlarge)
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