It’s a fairly safe bet to say that there is no other sport quite like Outlaw Truck & Tractor Pulling.
There are arguably many examples that make that statement true. There is nothing…NOTHING…like it. Not even in motorsports is there another motorsport like the OTTPA.
But think of any other sport. ANY…other…sport, and none of them make quite the connection between what a competitor does on the weekend, and what he does during the week.
All week, a good majority of the OTTPA competitors are actually making a living…working with tractors and trucks. Research and demographics show that 72 percent of OTTPA fans are agriculture based, but it’s not just the fans.
The guys and gals that harness these incredibly high-powered tractors on the weekend are agriculturally-based too.
Think about it. How many sports can say that? The athletes that perform on the weekend, also make a living in the same industry during the week.
It’s hard to make an argument that any other sport makes that connection.
In basketball, sure, you can say that players in the NBA perform during games on the weekend, and during the week, they’re practicing basketball. But we’re talking about the guy who makes the leather basketball and makes the uniforms. Is that person playing on the weekend?
In football, the players you see on Sunday in the NFL, again, also practice all week playing football. So yea, just like the basketball analogy above, these guys are playing football on the weekend and practicing football during the week. But to make an OTTPA comparison, we’re asking if the guy making helmets and shoulder pads: is he competing on the weekend?
Even in other national motorsports like NASCAR or IndyCar, the drivers are racing on the weekend and are working with the team during the week. But it’s the guy who makes a living during the week on the racing team…the engineers, the accountants, the PR guy or the guy who washes the hauler. Are they the ones competing on Sunday’s?
Here’s the point: OTTPA competitors are totally invested, and their work life and weekend warrior life are intertwined. The connection between tractor pullers and how they make a living is undeniable.
If you think about it, it makes sense. Tractors are used to pull all sorts of farming implements, including wagons, cultivators, seeders, plows, balers, mowers and sprayers.
No other sport in the country can reach back and have a history quite like tractor pulling. People have farmed for thousands of years, and before tractors, farmers used horses to pull their family machines.
But once tractors came along, farmers from all around the country had a challenge, and a new sport was born…from the fields to the pulling track.
But even before the tractor, farmers were competing, and that spirit of competition is still alive today. After the Civil War, farmers began to have competitions to see whose horses could pull the heaviest loads.
Some of those early competitions included hitching a horse to a barn door laid flat on the ground. As the horse started to pull the door, people would jump on the door to create more resistance. The horse that could pull the most people the greatest distance was the winner.
Talk about taking the sport from the working week to the weekend? Yea, that’s it!
It’s no wonder that when the OTTPA comes to town for a weekend event, that you see the farming community come out in droves. You see farmers, ranchers, dairymen and women, four-wheelers, cowboy boots, seed company signs on fences, and overalls.
Yep, overalls. You see them everywhere, and who can blame anyone for wearing them. These folks came to the tractor pull from the fields, their farm, and ranch. And now they’re at the OTTPA event on the weekend…because, this is what they do, what they love.
The tractors in the field and the tractors on the pulling track may not be exactly the same. The horsepower output may be different, but that’s about where the differences end.
They both churn out massive amounts of black smoke to the delight of competitors and fans alike.
But then again, they’re the same person.