After seeing a few signs on the A162 in Towton, North Yorkshire promoting ‘Tractor Plough Racing’ Little M and I headed to a field in early October, just 5 minutes from Sherburn in Elmet, near Leeds.
Now, I have to confess, as a Formula 1 fan, I had high expectations and perhaps an overactive imagination on how Tractor Plough Racing would work. It isn’t like monster truck racing, and it is most definitely not high speed, but it is fascinating, especially for toddlers who love large farm machinery.
Showcasing a range of vintage tractors and plough’s each farmer is given a patch of land to plough. From what we observed, the judges will mark on accuracy, uniformity and perhaps time (although no one seemed to be in a rush!).
The event ran all day and whilst we only stayed for an hour or so; it gives you an idea that it is not a race based on speed as I had first thought. There were a few activities such as milking a wooden cow, tombola and a cafe offering hot and cold food.
Walking up and down to view all the different tractors and ploughs was fascinating. There were some classic tractors which still looked like they were in regular use. Little M loved looking at them all and was invited to sit on one, but declined due to the noise.
Whilst it is great we could get such access to the working tractors, you do have to be very aware of what is going on around you. Tractors were turning, passing by, lifting ploughs up and down. Luckily Little M insisted on being carried, but if you have a toddler who loves to run around wildly, this is probably not the event for you.
Not from a farming background myself, I am still slightly astonished that ‘Tractor Plough Racing’ is an actual thing… but it is, and it is run throughout the UK, also with Steam and Horse Drawn Ploughs!
Tractor Plough Racing is a Thing!
With free entry and excellent access, it was a fab ‘Dad Day Out’ providing an enjoyable interlude to our Sunday activities. If you like tractors and want something different, it is definitely worth a visit if you see one nearby.