When the noise erupts, the earmuffs protect. When the dirt flies, the scene becomes clouded. When the race finishes, the winner emerges. Our Saturday adventure to the Kindersley Dirt Drags and Tractor Pulls on July 20, 2019, was well worth the ticket price!
My son-in-law is a mechanic from North Central Saskatchewan. We invited the family to come down and join us for a family fun day. Half expecting field half-ton trucks and farm tractors, he was pleasantly surprised with the sight of modified and super modified vehicles. The two organizations, the Canadian Mud Racing Organization and the Prairie Pullers League, made this a day to remember.
Spoiler alert: My son-in-law is booking in for next year already!
Friday the races were to start, but rain prevented optimum conditions. With some rain still in the forecast, a rumour was afloat that the races would not sail on Saturday. Concerned, I grabbed a phone number for one of the organizers. Although only hours away from his driving in the races, Shayne Neigum answered my call. He enthusiastically stated that the races would begin an hour later than scheduled – the track was looking good.
Arriving a few minutes early, we saw a grader preparing the grounds, followed by a harrow and packer. Two other tractors pulled levelling equipment that provided a smooth and even surface. As their day progressed, they demonstrated why they had been chosen. This well oiled team was able to quickly repair and prepare the track while the next contestant rolled up. There was no question that this was an operation that took pride in maintaining safety and providing the best situation possible for the drivers.
Meanwhile the grand-kids were enthralled with the bouncy castles and Loonie-sand-mountain (that’s what it looked like to them). The price of admission allowed them to enjoy the day when the stand- seats became a bit too hard! One of them found a loonie in the sand. Another caught a hat thrown into the stands. In all a very profitable day!
I was smarter and wiser by the time I left. The two announcers were both knowledgeable about their fields. The men and women competitors were known by name, reputation and personal interactions. As event M.C.’s, their patter of the day included tips on the intricacies of the power plants running the dragsters and pullers, accurate forecasts about what to watch for, and every once in a while a joke that really worked.
Of interest to many who attended was the row of parked race vehicles. You could walk the avenue and see the engines, the deftly honed tires, the drivers interested in displaying and talking about their machines.
Oh, and then there were the actual races! 200 feet in just over two seconds – just enough time to twist your neck to follow their plumes of dirt. The pullers churned the track literally pulling the weighted trailer into the ground.
More could be said – but let’s wait ‘til next year. Until then, thanks to the awesome committee, the sponsors and all the volunteers that made this happen. See you next year!
Feature Image: Dirt Drags, image courtesy of Ron Baker
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