Thursday, August 4, 2011

County Fair--Part 2

After looking at the animals, we went to the “event” of the night...the horse pulls. Fascinating comes to mind. In the old days large draft horses were used to pull farm equipment. These magnificent horses are today used to pull some equipment, but mainly for sport! These athletes are strong...pure horse power!

The horses are huge...mainly Percheron and Belgians, but once in awhile a Clydesdale. They are trained to work as a team to pull loads as heavy as 10,000 pounds! There are 3 categories: pairs that weigh in at 3200 pounds; 4000 pounds; and 4500 pounds! The larger the pair, the more they can pull.

Unlike some contests where there might be points for style or beauty, the winning team is judged by how far it can drag a sledge filled with weights. The team that pulls the sledge the farthest is the winner! To qualify for the next round, the team must pull the sledge 20 feet.

The event started off with the smaller horses pulling 2000 pounds. Having never seen the event before, I was not all that impressed. The horses were able to pull 2000 pounds without too much effort. Then the weight was increased to 3000 pounds...still not too much of a problem...then 4000 we were starting to see what this was all about. These massive steeds dug into the ground and pulled. If the team was well trained, they pulled as a unit, and that’s the trick! The teams need to work as a unit! The winner in this category pulled 6000 pounds!

Next came the mid-sized horses. They started out pulling 3000 pounds and the winning team pulled 7000 pounds!  Last came the big horses. These guys are huge! they started out pulling 3500 pounds and the winners pulled a whooping 9500 pounds!

I took a few videos of the event. I’m not an expert at editing these are unedited. Don’t worry, they are not long...but it will give you an idea how massive and wonderful these horses are!

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