If there’s ever been a sport that’s been perfectly tailored to a specific audience, it’s the Outlaw Truck and Tractor Pulling Association.
It’s funny, but consumers in this country have a unique ability to turn even a simple, daily chore into a massive spectator sport. Tractor pulling began as a matter of bragging rights between farmers to see whose tractor was toughest. Now, it’s a competition with fire-breathing vehicles that tests man and machine.
Let’s be clear: the tractors you see pulling in the OTTPA look nothing like the equipment they’re named after. These are monsters, with rear tires taller than the average human being and engines that literally shake the ground when they’re cranked up during a pull.
The noise alone gets fans revved up, and when it’s time to drop the hammer, they know to get ready for the spectacle, too. When the flag drops for the start of a pull, fans delightfully scurry for their earplugs. They’re aware a deafening run is about to start, and it’s met with an equal roar from the crowd of thousands.
These guys and gals grind it out in the Heartland each summer from South Dakota to Texas, and rural America eats it up. The OTTPA has over 400,000 loyal fans that watch these high-powered monsters each summer in 50 different cities. And the majority of those craving this sport are agriculture-based who grew up, and still, work in rural America.
These are farmers, ranchers, dairymen and women who obviously spend their week working in agriculture, and their weekends relishing in a sport that glorifies it.
But nobody is blaming this loyal group for ingesting the black smoke and dirt that fills their eyes each weekend during an OTTPA event. Some of the massive vehicles on display that are just begging to be unleashed, crank out 2,900 horsepower as they make their way down the pull.
Let that sink in for a moment.
An IndyCar that covers the length of a football field in one second at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, has about 900 horsepower.
“Anymore for me, it’s just a Sunday drive,” said Scott Jensen, who pilots a Super Modified two-wheel drive truck in the series. “I love it, and I love seeing the fans. Sometimes when they come down after the event is over and they check out the trucks and tractors…it’s like they just seen a UFO. There’s nothing like these things.”
Now in its 35th year of competition, the OTTPA is part of the fastest growing motorsport in the country. The series has 16 different classes with 350 competitors, and they pull in front of massive crowds, including State Fairs in Iowa, South Dakota, Nebraska, Missouri, and Kansas. The OTTPA is a hot ticket at the state fairs and annually has the largest crowds.
“We’re always pleasantly surprised at some of the huge crowds they draw,” said South Dakota State Fair assistant manager, Candi Briley. “The truck and tractor pull is just something so cool and unique for people to check out. It always is a big hit for us.”
When it comes to motorsports, there absolutely isn’t a better return on investment than the OTTPA. The sheer number of people following the series is one thing, but the way they consume information is an assault on their senses, too. The OTTPA’s jumbotron at each event is an eye-grabber for sure. The on-site activation opportunities with tens of thousands of eyeballs squarely focused on the activities on the track is priceless.
The OTTPA also features high-quality social media content through Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. 20,000 loyal subscribers of the OTTPA consume the high-energy sport of truck and tractor pulling, and the series cranks out fresh, high-quality content throughout the summer.
Motorsports has always been known for its loyal fan base. That’s true. A recent study by Repucon says that seven out of 10 motorsports fans are loyal to a sponsor’s brand when the brand supports their sport.
The OTTPA offers an even more unique and laser-sharp focus on its fan base. These are farmers, who work in the field all day and support a sport that grew from their livelihood.