Why Tractors Should Drag Race More Often
Drag racing is one of those rare classes of motor sports that encompasses just about every form of vehicle, and tractors too. Due to their size and raw power, tractor races have been growing in popularity. Here you’ll see a man on a modified Kubota farm tractor, a small model, fitted with a frame and wheels on which he stands, taking on – and beating – a performance pick up on the drag strip. It’s an impressive performance, as well as being funny and thought-provoking. The man in question is unquestionably mad, but he is carrying on the long tradition of ‘run what you brung’ that pervades in many areas of US motorsports.
We wonder what gave him the inspiration to drag race a tractor: perhaps he responded to a bet, or maybe he simply realized the potential – in speed and entertainment terms – of his mount. What he certainly has considered is that his tractor has certain advantages over a traditional drag strip racing vehicle. On the face of it, a small tractor like the one shown doesn’t look much like it could take on a truck, let alone a car, but we have to consider one very large advantage: it is much, much lighter than a full-bodied vehicle.
The rider has simply bolted on a frame with wheels – much like a chariot from Roman times – and uses the tractor unit at the front as his power. It’s just him, the frame, and the motor. The truck, on the other hand, is carrying hundreds of pounds more weight, which offsets its colossal power advantage. It’s a clever concept, albeit one that we can’t see catching on across the board!(more…)
So, now we know that a tractor can beat a truck, how do we move forward? Are we to lobby the drag racing governing bodies to introduce a tractor class? Perhaps we should encourage
So, now we know that a tractor can beat a truck, how do we move forward? Are we to lobby the drag racing governing bodies to introduce a tractor class? Perhaps we should encourage more people to enter unusual forms of transport. In fact, a quick search shows that drag racing tractors is not a new phenomenon; there are full-sized agricultural machines racing each other, and they look like a lot of fun.
The problem is that these machines are actually very, very expensive, and not really built for racing!
The appeal of drag racing clearly attracts a certain type of person; it’s largely about the spectacle, the noise, the thrill, and for the modern day person with a limited attention span it is the ideal form of racing. But does introducing tractors make it any more attractive? We think that any form of diversity in the sport is a welcome attraction; let’s face it, the Funny Car and Top Fuel classes are so fundamentally different that it is clear drag racing is a very diverse form of sport, and tractors add to the variety.
In the post below you’ll see the man riding the tractor clearly intended to have fun, but would he have as much fun driving the opposing truck, or a regular car? Probably not, but we can’t see the tractor craze taking over from the mainstream just yet. It’s a bit of fun, a showboating exercise intending to amuse, and one that has been something of a hit on YouTube. Tractors as the future of drag racing? No, not really; they don’t make the ground shake, or flash past at unbelievable speeds, but they do add to the fun and frivolity of the fabulous sport of drag racing.