Pullers know Tomah is the place to be in June
The roar of the Budweiser Dairyland Super National Truck & Tractor Pull in Tomah this past weekend could be heard for miles as competitors gave it their all to provide the best show possible. Despite Thursday night’s cancellation due to rain, thousands of spectators sat beneath clear skies and clouds of black smoke Friday and Saturday as trucks and tractors rumbled down the track.
The Tomah event, which has been running for 43 years, is one of three Super National Events associated with the National Tractor Pullers Association (NTPA) and is one of only two events on the NTPA circuit to host each of the twelve divisions.
“The whole pulling community knows that this location is on the map this particular weekend and has been for a number of years and will continue to be,” NTPA announcer Doc Riley said. “It’s amazing to me every year we come back we always learn something new about the area, I always learn another reason to come to this particular event at this particular venue.”
The Monroe County Ag Society hosts the event. Board President Chris Schreier says the pull is his lifelong adventure.
“This event puts a lot back into the community,” he said. “This isn’t a private group doing this and taking all the earnings. It all stays here and goes right back to our community.”
According to Riley, the NTPA doesn’t do events in large populated areas. Instead, it looks for areas that have good community involvement, which he says is very tough to find.
“Not many places want to put forth the effort to do it and that’s why this event succeeds as it has today,” he said.
For puller Pat Eilen, of Hampton, MN he loves pulling his big rig in Tomah. Eilen competed in the 20,000-lb Super Semi Class Friday night with his Peterbilt dubbed Just Passin’ Thru in Class, placing fourth with a pull of 342.15 feet. During Saturday evening’s session, Eilen pulled a total of 306.005 feet to finish sixth.
“It’s pretty cool. We’re in the trucking business and I’ve been coming here for 20 plus years starting as a kid cheering the competitors on,” he said. “I thought one day it would be pretty cool to get out there and do it myself.”
For competitor Colin Ross, of Waynesburg, PA he comes back to Tomah year after year because he loves the history of the Budweiser Dairyland Super National Truck and Tractor Pull.
“I grew up loving this sport. My dad’s been in the sport for a long time. It certainly impacted me at a young age and I always wanted to win here and fortunately I’ve done that once and hopefully I can do it two more times this weekend,” he said.
Unfortunately Ross couldn’t pull off a first place finish this past weekend but he did make it to the winner’s circle in third place with a pull of 332.680 feet during Friday evening’s session with his Super Stock Diesel Tractor dubbed Triple By Pass. During Saturday evening’s session Ross finished fourth with a pull of 329.970 feet.
“There is a lot of tradition here and it’s just an honorable place to pull and I’m very proud to be here,” he said.