Wauseon Maumee Valley Pullers (June) Event Cancelled

With Ohio's COVID-19 social-gathering restrictions likely to continue into the coming months, a third early-season Region II event has been adversely affected.

The Maumee Valley Pullers' Summer Nationals event, scheduled for Saturday, June 20 in Wauseon, has been cancelled and will not be rescheduled in 2020.

The Wauseon (MVP) event joins the Dragway 42 Spring Nationals (West Salem, May 23) and the Strawberry Pull-Off (Sugarcreek, June 13) as national regular-season events that have been impacted by COVID-19 restrictions.

Note that The M.E. Miller Tri-State Showdown, also in Wauseon, remains scheduled for Friday, September 4. Moreover, West Salem's Dragway 42 Fall Nationals remain scheduled for Saturday, September 26.

John A. Mann, Super Semi Competitor, Has Died

The WPI/NTPA organization is saddened to learn of the passing on Tuesday, April 7 of John A. Mann of East Canton, Ohio. Mr. Mann was a pioneer of the Super Semi division, having competed for over three decades with his "Lady Butterfly" Kenworth.

Mr. Mann started out in the construction industry but had migrated to trucking by 1969. Over the course of a 40-year career as a professional driver, his thousands of loads included parts for Air Force One and the Space Shuttle and tanks and personnel carriers for Operation Desert Storm in 1991.

His first motorsport was drag racing, in which he participated for a decade. For most of those years, his car of choice was a 1965 Ford Comet Cyclone, and his division was the heavyweight E/gas class.

Beginning in 1981 as most Semi competitors did with a street-legal work truck, Mr. Mann would frequently unhitch from a loaded trailer on a hard parking surface, bobtail to the pull site, and let a few pounds of pressure out of the eight tires on the tandem axles. After competing in front af a thrilled audience---frequently, like his 18-wheeler contemporaries, as the night's finale---he would punctuate his run with a long blast from the air horn. Then, he'd pump his drive tires back up and slip back under his load to continue his delivery.

Mr. Mann was among the invitees at the 1984 Indy Super Pull. He finished in sixth place on the short track but in first place in voting for the Pit Area Award, having decorated his allotted space with carpeting and live plants in a hint at his tendency toward the summertime showmanship that was to come.

He could and would appear at any pull between his payload's source and destination and was the last over-the-road holdout when the division ran for its first NTPA national title in 1992. Even after the 1974 V12 Detroit-powered, Allison-directed KW became a "trailer queen"---with 1.2 million miles on her odometer, having been to all 48 contiguous states---Mr. Mann's tendency to turn up anywhere and everywhere made him a fan favorite.

After making performance upgrades to "Lady Butterfly," Mr. Mann had his most successful season in 1994, posting six national wins in a runner-up effort. He continued to compete at Grand National events through 1999 and again from 2005 through 2010, finishing in the top five seven times in all.

We will post funeral/memorial details as they are determined.

We offer our sincere condolences to Bonnie and to the entire Mann family.

Region III Modified Mini Champion Brian Guza "Grandpa's Disaster"

RN 3 Champs grandpas disaster

When a competitor’s program advances in-season, he is a candidate for “Most Improved Puller.” Guza was so honored by WTPA in 2016, but this year, he wanted a bigger plaque as his region’s first champion. A last place in Ellsworth that was 116’ back of Nathan Hoffman’s “Shakin’ Shamrock” preceded a less messy Menomonie, where another fourth came among six but was still behind Hoffman and teammate Chris Burnett’s “Lil’ Disaster.” In Colby and then Weyauwega, though, Guza was third and then second and beat his challengers both times to forge a three-way tie heading to Ridgeland. And in the winner-take-all, Guza’s Mini became a great “Grandpa” by doing just that.

About National Tractor Pullers Association

The NTPA is the sport’s oldest and most respected truck and tractor pulling sanctioning organization. Governed by a board of directors, the NTPA is managed by World Pulling International (WPI), an independently owned entity. Headquartered in Worthington, Ohio, the NTPA provides rules and regulations and the infrastructures required for organizations throughout the country to arrange truck and tractor pulls.

The 2020 NTPA Championship Pulling Circuit is sponsored in part by Case IH, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Angry Farmer Products, Hot Shot's Secret, the Enderle Memorial Pull-Off, MAC Trailer, Ag Protect 1, Shell Rotella, STOP-FYRE®, Cen-Pe-Co Lubricants, Columbus Diesel Supply, Heritage Iron Magazine, Stainless Diesel, Midwest Wheel Inc., the National Tractor Pulling Championships in Bowling Green, Ohio, PowerBore Cylinder Sleeves, Profab Machine Inc., the Budweiser Dairyland Super Nationals in Tomah, Wisconsin, and Riverside Engine Inc.

Watch the 15th season of "NTPA Championship Pulling" presented by Case IH: Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. Eastern/5:30 p.m. Central. Encore performances appear on Mondays at 12:30 a.m. and 6 a.m. Eastern. RFD-TV is available on satellite through DirecTV (345), Dish Network (231), and AT&T (568) along with Spectrum/Time Warner, Brighthouse, Comcast, Charter, Suddenlink, Cox, and other cable providers. Check your current provider for details or visit the channel finder at www.rfdtv.com.

NTPA Live Streaming produced internet broadcasts of several national events in 2020. Visit NTPA.tv to purchase on-demand access to individual events. Or go all-in on the $299 Yearly Pass and get live and on-demand access to all streamed summertime NTPA events plus current and past episodes of "NTPA Championship Pulling" included! Purchase each stream or the package in your browser at NTPA.tv and watch there or via the NTPA.tv app on popular smart tv platforms including Roku, Amazon Fire, AppleTV, and AndroidTV and on both Apple iOS and Android mobile devices.

Subscribe to the Official Magazine of the NTPA! The Puller brings you the best in NTPA news, stories, and related pulling information. The PULL! Official Program and Souvenir Yearbook is carried in Tractor Supply Company (TSC) outlets.

Wear it loud! The NTPA's Webmall has pulling apparel in fresh, new designs for fans of all ages and sizes. Hats, event shirts, hoodies, pins, and patches all sport the iconic NTPA shield that represents excellence in premier-level pulling. Event, TV series, and special DVDs let you watch pulling action on your schedule. See it all at ShopNTPA.com.

For more information about the NTPA, visit our website, www.NTPAPULL.com, follow us on social media at our Facebook page (ntpapulling), Twitter (@NTPApull), YouTube (NTPApull), and Instagram (ntpa), or call the NTPA office at 614.436.1761.

Super Stock Competitor Charlie Ross Has Passed; Update: Memorial Info

WPI/NTPA is saddened to learn of the passing on Friday, April 3 of Charlie Ross, 75, of Zanesville, Ohio. Mr. Ross teamed with Jeff Englehart to pilot the Allis-Chalmers D21 Super Stock known in its latest incarnation as "Hoe Handle Engineerin'."

Mr. Ross was the owner and operator of Ross Agri Mechanics in Zanesville, a farm equipment service and repair shop and dealership he started in 1982.

He first appeared in NTPA competition in 1977 aboard a four-cylinder John Deere 2510 Super Stock he named "Little Dear." He and Englehart assembled the D21 over the winter of 1984-1985. The side shields surrounding the venerable 426-ci diesel block wore the emblems of Pepsi and Eagle Snacks sponsorships before the "Hoe Handle" name supplanted them in 1998.

The Ross-Englehart Team pulled at every tier of NTPA competition, capturing the Region I 9,500-lb. SS championship in 1987 while finishing ninth at both the 7,500- and 9,500-lb. weight breaks at the Grand National level. For most of the next three decades, they were regulars on the state and regional circuits, with Mr. Ross' final appearance at his hometown Muskingum County Fair Pull coming in 2017.

His dedication to pulling extended beyond the track as well, as he served the Mid-Ohio club, a regional member within the Ohio State Tractor Pullers Association, as its president, the OSTPA as its vice president, and the NTPA as an Ohio member state delegate during the 1990s. He was also a member of the Old Steam and Gas and Freeland Valley Antique Power Clubs.

Mr. Ross is survived by his wife Margaret Kittle Ross; his daughters, Chris (Kevin) Brooks, Shelia (Kem) Wilson, and Marsha (Donnie Morgan) Parks; his sister Betsy (Ron) Thomas; his grandchildren, Chad (Sara), Cheryl Christen (Justin), Brady, Emily and Jacob; and his great grandchildren, Ella, Courtney, Jack and Ruby. His full obituary may be found here.

Memorial contributions may be made to Mount Olive Church, 1705 County Line Road, Hopewell, Ohio 43746. A Celebration of Life will follow at a later time when family and friends can gather together.

Our condolences are with Margaret and the Ross family and Jeff and Mr. Ross' many friends as they mourn.

WPI/NTPA Office Closed Until May 1 to Comply with Ohio Stay-at-Home Order

NTPAPULLcom HQClosedOn Sunday, March 22, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced a stay-at-home order for all Ohio residents who are not working at life-sustaining businesses. The move is the latest in a series of unprecedented efforts to contain and/or slow the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus) infections. On Thursday, April 2, the governor's order was extended through Friday, May 1.

To comply with this order and to protect our colleagues and community as best we can, the WPI/NTPA office in Worthington, Ohio will remain closed for on-site business for the duration of this order. Based on what is presently known, this closure will be in effect through Friday, May 1.

No one will be present to gather and process mail or packages or to monitor fax transmissions, so please refrain from sending physical correspondence by any of these methods but instead e-mail documents where feasible to the appropriate address(es) below. If such correspondence involves payments, sensitive information, or physical materials, please delay your mailing/shipping and instead send us a notification via e-mail. WPI/NTPA shall waive any impending deadlines or due dates for applications or payments for the duration of this closure.

Our Webmall, ShopNTPA.com, will continue to accept merchandise orders, and we will ship orders for physical products as soon as we are able to do so in the sequence in which they were received. Please note that subscriptions to The Puller Magazine may be initiated or renewed from the Webmall, and we encourage you to do so to prevent any delay or interruption of service. (Be advised that delivery of the March/April issue may be delayed.)

Additionally, no one will be present in the office to answer the telephone. While you are welcome to leave a voicemail message for WPI/NTPA personnel as directed, you are likely to get a quicker and more comprehensive response if you contact us by e-mail, which each of us will check frequently during our time out of the office.

We may each be reached at the following addresses:

  • Gregg Randall, General Manager: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Helen Swartz, Secretary of Administration/Memberships/Event Contracts and Insurance: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Bev Ross, Accounting: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Jon Dunlap, Scorekeeping/Data Analysis/Event Site Information: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Michaela Kramer, Publications Editor/Designer/Subscriptions: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Matt Steinmetz, Scoreboard Operations/Live Streaming/Marketing: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Evan Smith, Website/Social Media/Webmall: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

We share your understandable concerns about the status of the 2020 regular season. We continue to hope that very few postponements or cancellations will be necessary, given the temporary nature of the severe travel and assembly restrictions currently in place. (Official WPI/NTPA statement.) Please trust us to keep you fully informed of any developments as conditions warrant.

(Update: The Dragway 42 Spring Nationals and the Strawberry Pull-Off, two Regional National events scheduled for Saturday, May 23 and Saturday, June 13 in West Salem and Sugarcreek, Ohio, respectively, have been cancelled. These are, to date, the only regular-season events that have been impacted by COVID-19-related social gathering restrictions.)

We strongly encourage each and every one of you to heed the advice of medical personnel and practice physical distancing even as you remain socially in touch with your loved ones. When this is over, we want to see you---healthy and happy---in the grandstands, in the pits, or in the driver's seat and ready to enjoy the best season of NTPA truck and tractor pulling yet.

Be safe.

Region II Modified (Northwest) Champion Tarry Feiss "Feissty Farmer"

RN 2 Champs feissty farmer

Tarry simply buried the rest of the division under an avalanche of eight wins and 22 top-fives. A streak of five consecutive Northwestern runner-up finishes from Preble to Monroe (during which, incredibly, she lost ground to husband Todd in the standings) was followed by six straight NW wins from Mason to Wauseon that established a lead of eight over her mate. The advantage got scaled back to three after a seventh under Roanoke’s Friday night lights matched her previous season low in Marion exactly 11 weeks before. But no matter: A decade after earning her first title in Two Wheel Drive, the Hoosier State’s “Feissty” lady is a national champion for a second time.

About National Tractor Pullers Association

The NTPA is the sport’s oldest and most respected truck and tractor pulling sanctioning organization. Governed by a board of directors, the NTPA is managed by World Pulling International (WPI), an independently owned entity. Headquartered in Worthington, Ohio, the NTPA provides rules and regulations and the infrastructures required for organizations throughout the country to arrange truck and tractor pulls.

The 2020 NTPA Championship Pulling Circuit is sponsored in part by Case IH, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Angry Farmer Products, Hot Shot's Secret, the Enderle Memorial Pull-Off, MAC Trailer, Ag Protect 1, Shell Rotella, STOP-FYRE®, Cen-Pe-Co Lubricants, Columbus Diesel Supply, Heritage Iron Magazine, Stainless Diesel, Midwest Wheel Inc., the National Tractor Pulling Championships in Bowling Green, Ohio, PowerBore Cylinder Sleeves, Profab Machine Inc., the Budweiser Dairyland Super Nationals in Tomah, Wisconsin, and Riverside Engine Inc.

Watch the 15th season of "NTPA Championship Pulling" presented by Case IH: Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. Eastern/5:30 p.m. Central. Encore performances appear on Mondays at 12:30 a.m. and 6 a.m. Eastern. RFD-TV is available on satellite through DirecTV (345), Dish Network (231), and AT&T (568) along with Spectrum/Time Warner, Brighthouse, Comcast, Charter, Suddenlink, Cox, and other cable providers. Check your current provider for details or visit the channel finder at www.rfdtv.com.

NTPA Live Streaming produced internet broadcasts of several national events in 2020. Visit NTPA.tv to purchase on-demand access to individual events. Or go all-in on the $299 Yearly Pass and get live and on-demand access to all streamed summertime NTPA events plus current and past episodes of "NTPA Championship Pulling" included! Purchase each stream or the package in your browser at NTPA.tv and watch there or via the NTPA.tv app on popular smart tv platforms including Roku, Amazon Fire, AppleTV, and AndroidTV and on both Apple iOS and Android mobile devices.

Subscribe to the Official Magazine of the NTPA! The Puller brings you the best in NTPA news, stories, and related pulling information. The PULL! Official Program and Souvenir Yearbook is carried in Tractor Supply Company (TSC) outlets.

Wear it loud! The NTPA's Webmall has pulling apparel in fresh, new designs for fans of all ages and sizes. Hats, event shirts, hoodies, pins, and patches all sport the iconic NTPA shield that represents excellence in premier-level pulling. Event, TV series, and special DVDs let you watch pulling action on your schedule. See it all at ShopNTPA.com.

For more information about the NTPA, visit our website, www.NTPAPULL.com, follow us on social media at our Facebook page (ntpapulling), Twitter (@NTPApull), YouTube (NTPApull), and Instagram (ntpa), or call the NTPA office at 614.436.1761.

Bruce Hutcherson, Hall-of-Fame Modified Competitor, Has Passed; Update: Funeral Info

We report with great sadness of the passing on Saturday, March 28 of Bruce Owen Hutcherson Jr., 78, of Patriot, Indiana. Mr. Hutcherson was an eight-time Grand National champion with several configurations of his "Makin' Bacon Special" Modifieds and a 1990 inductee into the Pulling Hall of Fame.

Mr. Hutcherson grew up on his parents' dairy, beef, and grain farm near Patriot, a village along the Ohio River in southeastern Indiana. After graduating from Purdue University, Mr. Hutcherson started out as a science, industrial arts, and agriculture teacher at his hometown high school. After six years, he devoted himself for the next three-and-a-half decades to full-time farming, a career which he eventually augmented with a farm machinery and school bus repair business after his pulling career concluded. In 2009, Mr. Hutcherson earned the Silver Star Lifetime Achievement Award from the Switzerland County Soil and Water Conservation District.  

At its height, the Hutchersons' farming operation involved 5,000 acres including 2,300 acres of row crops across parts of 11 family farms from Switzerland to Ohio Counties. He grew corn, soybeans, wheat, and hay for over 200 cows. And, of course, the pigs---as many as 10,000 of them at a time, including 425 sows---that were the inspiration for the iconic name Mr. Hutcherson drove deeply into the NTPA record books.

His 14-year pulling career began in 1975 with a single, carbureted big-block Chevrolet in front of automatic and Farmall M transmissions. By 1976, he had built the first "Makin' Bacon" from an Oliver 88 rear and a fuel injected BBC and claimed the 1977 5,200-lb. Grand National Modified title as well as the Region IV 5,200- and 7,200-lb. championships. For 1979, the Chevy was fitted with a supercharger for national competition. A second "Special," though, came along in 1978 and married a John Deere log-skidder rear to an aluminum chassis built by ProTrac, the Fort Wayne fab shop previously famous for Modified Mini frames. Mr. Hutcherson installed two inline Rodecks while competing in the 5,200, 7,200-, and 9,200-lb. classes and winning the lightweight division.

Then, in 1980, a heavy-duty Rockwell replaced the skidder and a Miller Brothers chrome-moly frame supplanted the ProTrac to allow Mr. Hutcherson to run with four engines starting at 7,200-lb., making him the first to achieve that distinction upon "The Pig""s debut. By the end of that machine's third campaign, it had achieved six Grand National Modified titles: the 7,200-, 9,200-, and 12,200-lb. of 1981 and the 5,200-, 7,200-, and 9,200-lb. of 1982 (along with five regional championships in that span). For the first three titles, Mr. Hutcherson was named the Modified Puller of the Year; during the last three, he earned the Hooker of the Year Award as the sport's most prolific puller in national competition.

1984's edition of "Makin' Bacon Special" ran the gamut from two to five engines aboard an Engler chassis with Banter crossboxes and became a fixture on the indoor winter pulling circuit. Along with the Modifieds, Mr. Hutcherson also competed in the formative years of Two Wheel Drives with the "Super Scooter" Dodge Rampage which eventually, like his Mods, assumed the colors of Carhartt sponsorship.

Surviving is Jill, Mr. Hutcherson's wife of 54 years, their daughter Kim and her husband Sean, their son Joe and his wife Jeanne, his sister Carol Ann Armstrong, seven grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, and many nieces, nephews, and cousins. Mr. Hutcherson's full obituary may be found here.

A celebration of Mr. Hutcherson's life is planned for this summer. Memorial contributions may be made to the Mr. Bruce Owen Hutcherson Jr. Endowment Fund, c/o CFCSI. Sympathy may be expressed and contributions made at the Haskell and Morrison Funeral Home website.

Please keep Jill and the entire Hutcherson family close by in your thoughts during their time of sorrow.

Region II Pro Stock Diesel Four Wheel Drive 3.0 (West) Champion Jeff Hossler "Flirtin' with Disaster"

RN 2 Champs flirtin with disaster

In 2019, “Flirtin’” was for certain. A year after earning the most points in the region and winning the West with a furious comeback at Allegan, Hossler chose to focus exclusively on defending that title. That “Disaster”-ous decision spelled doom for the rest of the field. Hossler won seven times—in Preble, Arcola, Charlotte, Cassopolis, Eaton’s fair, Greenville, and Roanoke—including five straight over eight weeks. “Frank,” his closest challenger, got by “FwD” on three occasions, but Hossler still beat Stamm head-to-head eight other times. Oh, make it nine, counting the Enderle, where another win by “Flirtin’” brought down the curtain.

About National Tractor Pullers Association

The NTPA is the sport’s oldest and most respected truck and tractor pulling sanctioning organization. Governed by a board of directors, the NTPA is managed by World Pulling International (WPI), an independently owned entity. Headquartered in Worthington, Ohio, the NTPA provides rules and regulations and the infrastructures required for organizations throughout the country to arrange truck and tractor pulls.

The 2020 NTPA Championship Pulling Circuit is sponsored in part by Case IH, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Angry Farmer Products, Hot Shot's Secret, the Enderle Memorial Pull-Off, MAC Trailer, Ag Protect 1, Shell Rotella, STOP-FYRE®, Cen-Pe-Co Lubricants, Columbus Diesel Supply, Heritage Iron Magazine, Stainless Diesel, Midwest Wheel Inc., the National Tractor Pulling Championships in Bowling Green, Ohio, PowerBore Cylinder Sleeves, Profab Machine Inc., the Budweiser Dairyland Super Nationals in Tomah, Wisconsin, and Riverside Engine Inc.

Watch the 15th season of "NTPA Championship Pulling" presented by Case IH: Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. Eastern/5:30 p.m. Central. Encore performances appear on Mondays at 12:30 a.m. and 6 a.m. Eastern. RFD-TV is available on satellite through DirecTV (345), Dish Network (231), and AT&T (568) along with Spectrum/Time Warner, Brighthouse, Comcast, Charter, Suddenlink, Cox, and other cable providers. Check your current provider for details or visit the channel finder at www.rfdtv.com.

NTPA Live Streaming produced internet broadcasts of several national events in 2020. Visit NTPA.tv to purchase on-demand access to individual events. Or go all-in on the $299 Yearly Pass and get live and on-demand access to all streamed summertime NTPA events plus current and past episodes of "NTPA Championship Pulling" included! Purchase each stream or the package in your browser at NTPA.tv and watch there or via the NTPA.tv app on popular smart tv platforms including Roku, Amazon Fire, AppleTV, and AndroidTV and on both Apple iOS and Android mobile devices.

Subscribe to the Official Magazine of the NTPA! The Puller brings you the best in NTPA news, stories, and related pulling information. The PULL! Official Program and Souvenir Yearbook is carried in Tractor Supply Company (TSC) outlets.

Wear it loud! The NTPA's Webmall has pulling apparel in fresh, new designs for fans of all ages and sizes. Hats, event shirts, hoodies, pins, and patches all sport the iconic NTPA shield that represents excellence in premier-level pulling. Event, TV series, and special DVDs let you watch pulling action on your schedule. See it all at ShopNTPA.com.

For more information about the NTPA, visit our website, www.NTPAPULL.com, follow us on social media at our Facebook page (ntpapulling), Twitter (@NTPApull), YouTube (NTPApull), and Instagram (ntpa), or call the NTPA office at 614.436.1761.

Shipshewana: Refunds to Be Issued, 2021 Dates Announced

NTPAPULLcom Shipshewana cancelledAn order was issued on Thursday, March 12 by Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb that restricts non-essential gatherings to 250 or fewer people, effective immediately, in the interest of limiting the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus) infections.

Pursuant to this order, the Wakarusa Ag/Deutz-Fahr NTPA Shipshewana Spring Nationals event scheduled for Friday and Saturday, March 20-21 at the Michiana Event Center has been cancelled.

The event will not be rescheduled in 2020. As it will not be contested without spectators present, the live-stream broadcast of the event at NTPA.tv has also been cancelled. Also called off is the Michiana Farm Show, presented by the MEC and Grogg-Martin Auctioneers and Realty, which will also not be rescheduled in 2020.

Fortunately, we are proud to announce that dates have been established for next year's NTPA Shipshewana Spring Nationals: March 19-20, 2021. Please check www.NTPAPULL.com, our social media platforms, or future issues of The Puller magazine for additional details as they are determined.

If you purchased tickets for this event from any authorized outlet---whether an O'Reilly Auto Parts location or ShopNTPA.com/tickets---first of all: Thank you. We appreciate your patronage and wanted very much to provide you with a night's or a weekend's worth of motorsports entertainment and fellowship. Unfortunately, circumstances have made that impossible, and we share your disappointment.

Second, be assured that you will be refunded the purchase price of your ticket or access. (Associated credit card fees will not be refunded.) But we respectfully ask that you please do not contact your credit card company but instead allow these refunds to be processed correctly, thoroughly, and expeditiously through each outlet's established process:

  • For O'Reilly Auto Parts purchasers: Return your printed tickets to the store where they were purchased. You may receive one of the following: a cash refund, a refund via your method of purchase, or store credit. Please understand that O'Reilly retail personnel may be unfamiliar with the refund process, so politely request assistance by store management if necessary.
  • For ShopNTPA.com/tickets electronic ticket purchasers: You will automatically receive a refund. But as our ticketing partner is responsible for processing refunds for hundreds of other client events that have also been cancelled or have restricted spectator access within the past week, please allow two to four weeks for the refunds to be processed and to appear on your credit card statement. Contacting your credit card provider will not speed up your refund and may result in additional charges.

Additionally, just as with a rainout or other event termination, invited competitors will be refunded the full amount of their bond/entry fee by check from the NTPA office.

Neither the NTPA nor the MEC, our promotional partner, initiated or welcomes this cancellation, but it is necessary to remain in compliance with the governor's lawful order. The Association stands by its statement of earlier this week regarding the 2020 regular season: The NTPA neither intends nor plans to initiate any event cancellations related to the present public health crisis. If future events are impacted by this or any other health or safety crisis, we will post updated information at www.NTPAPULL.com.

Thank you for your understanding. We'll see you this summer and again in Shipshewana in 2021!

NTPA Statement on Coronavirus Concerns (Revised)

Worthington, Ohio---The National Tractor Pullers Association is respectful of the need for governmental agencies, private businesses, and individual citizens to take sensible measures to limit and control the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) infections.

That said, the Association has neither plans nor intentions to initiate cancellations or postponements of scheduled events.

Federal and state orders that make large gatherings impermissible, while of indeterminate duration, are temporary. It is not presently anticipated that regular-season, outdoor events will be affected.

If any events are in any way impacted by decisions made by authorities or promoters in response to this or any other public health and/or safety emergencies, the NTPA will post details at www.NTPAPULL.com.

Be safe, and we’ll see you this summer.

Rod Deck, Past GN SF Champion, Has Died

It is our sad duty to inform you of the passing on Tuesday, March 10 of Rod Deck, 65, of Winside, Nebraska, following a courageous battle with cancer. Mr. Deck was a two-time Grand National champion and earned multiple Regional National titles, all in the Super Farm division with his "Dream On" Case IH. He was also the father of past GN SF champion and current Limited Pro Stock competitor Bryan Deck ("One Bad Apple").

Mr. Deck began his career in agriculture at age 14 with his own dairy herd. Later, he and Bryan together operated Circle D Farms, which raises 5,000 irrigated acres of corn and soybeans.

Both father and son got started in pulling in 1999, Bryan with a Case 1370 Hot Farm and Rod with a Farmall M. They moved to the Super Farm class shortly thereafter with an International 706 refitted with Magnum sheet metal. Originally named "Code Red," that tractor soon was relabeled "Dream On" in tribute to the Aerosmith song, and the Decks teamed to pull at different weight breaks in the Nebraska Bush Pullers series.

Meanwhile, the elder Deck continued pulling his M on the antique circuit, winning four consecutive National Antique Tractor Pullers Association Division 2 titles from 2001 through 2004. After Mr. Deck's wife Patricia succumbed to cancer, the antique pulls served as family trips, as Mr. Deck was accompanied by his twin daughters Michelle and Melissa.

After a brief stint in Econo-Mods, the Decks began to pull "Dream On" regularly with the Outlaw Truck and Tractor Pullers Association and sporadically with NTPA in the mid-2000s. They became a two-tractor team when Bryan purchased the "One Bad Apple" Pro Stock from Michigan and converted it to compete in the 640-cube, 3.0-charger class. Rod won his first Association title in Region V in 2011 on the strength of victories in Rockwell and Waverly, Iowa. Two years later, he celebrated as his son won the Grand National championship and their division's Bowling Green ring.

In 2016, Mr. Deck broke through for an unconventional title season. It included only one win---again in Rockwell---but 11 top-fives in 13 appearances led to his own inaugural GN crown and a slot in the Enderle Pull-Off that he converted to a 355' victory. That year, in addition to its dominance of the premier circuit, "Dream On" pulled at events in all five active national regions and won RN hooks in three of them: twice in Region II, in Pinetops in Region IV, and in Hopkinsville in Region VI. Then in 2017, he overcame a six-point deficit entering the final day of the season in Sandwich, Illinois to repeat as both champion and then, a week later, as an Enderle winner.

Health concerns led Mr. Deck to back away from committing to the full circuit entering 2018, but he still traveled across the country for occasional GN appearances and won three times in Iowa to clinch Region V. In 2019, in what would prove to be his final season of competition, he won his fourth and fifth national titles in four years by claiming both Regions III and V and topped the RN field to earn his third Enderle Pull-Off victory.

Mr. Deck is survived by Michelle, Melissa, Bryan and his wife Connie, and their children Justin, Anna, and Ryan.

The WPI/NTPA family mourns the loss of Mr. Deck, and we extend our deepest sympathy to his family as they grieve.

List of NTPA Shipshewana Invited Competitors

ShipshewanaEventGraphic 2020The second Wakarusa Ag/Deutz-Fahr NTPA Spring Nationals presented by Grogg-Martin Auctioneers and the Michiana Event Center will comprise three sessions on Friday and Saturday, March 20-21.

Located in Shipshewana, Indiana along State Route 5 between the Toll Road (Interstate 80/90) and U.S. 20, the MEC’s Trade Show Building will be outfitted with a 300’-plus pulling surface and both bleacher and VIP trackside seating. Meanwhile, the Michiana Farm Show will occupy the adjacent Coliseum during daytime hours on both Friday and Saturday, and the Staging Building will house the open pit area.

As of March 10, the following competitors are scheduled to appear:

Light Super Stock (Fri. 6p & Sat. 6p)

  • Bryan Bowles/Alter Ego
  • George Everett/Smokeless Alternative
  • Cole Forrester/Airborne
  • Kyle Karlen/Bad Blood
  • Chris & Zach Linville/Ridge Runner
  • Brandon Phillips/Insanity
  • Larry Phillips/Extremely Insane
  • Adam Spiegelberg/Detonator Black
  • Jordan Spiegelberg/Detonator Red
  • Marcus Wettleson/Gunpowder & Lead

Super Farm (Fri. 6p & Sat. noon)

  • Lee Butts/Press On
  • Jeff Casey/Whoopie Maker
  • Bryan Deck/Dream On
  • Brady Ferris/Absolutely Nuts
  • Brook Ferris Jr./Assorted Nuts
  • Greg & Russ Freeze/Deere Traxx
  • Shane Masten/Thumpin’ Pumpkin
  • Kaitlyn McDonald/Red Mule
  • Tony Sietsema/Wolverine Deere
  • Jon Silsby/Crop Doctor
  • Chris Weidinger/Black Power
  • Dave Whelan/My Last Excuse

Limited Pro Stock (Fri. 6p & Sat. 6p)

  • Garrett Boldry/Smoke Fever
  • Bryan Deck/One Bad Apple
  • Bill Figanbaum/Instigator
  • James Giese/Hicktown Hurricane
  • Jon Liechty/Rush Hour
  • Kevin Lindstrom/Hyper Harvester
  • Matt Lindstrom & Mike Sather/Adrenaline Rush
  • Dan Parkinson/Bombardeere
  • Drew Parkinson/Commandeere
  • Jeremy Ploetz/Big One
  • Roger Scalzo/Bad to the Bone
  • Rob Trowbridge/Disturbed

Modified Mini (Fri. 6p & Sat. 6p)

  • Ken Bultemeier/W.A.E. Flip Side
  • Todd Bultman/Stress Relief
  • Dillon Bunnage/Phoenix
  • C.J. Graczyk/Cash Crop
  • David Lacey/Triple Play: Double or Nothing
  • David Lacey/Triple Play Unchained
  • Dusty Price/Bacon Bits
  • Tim Rea/Wicked Sensation
  • Chase Richardson/The Vibrator
  • Ken Veney/Funny Lil’ Farmall
  • Jesse Webb/Stepchild’s B.A.M.

Semi Exhibition (Fri. 6p & Sat. 6p)

  • Ryan DeBroux/Playin' with Fire

Hot Farm (Sat. noon)

  • Darren Bommer/I Got This
  • Brian Carrington/Endle$$
  • Alan Daily/No-Name Deere
  • Tim Jones/Against the Odds
  • Mike Robbins/Fire in the Hole
  • Kevin D. Smith/Buckshot Reloaded
  • Travis Smith/Cornfield Cadillac
  • Tony Weber/Fifty Shades of Red

PS Diesel 4x4 3.0 (Sat. noon & 6p)

  • Michael Carpenter/Top Priority
  • C.W. Cartmell/Most Hated
  • Anthony Finkbeiner/Inbred Inline
  • Nick Gillett/Black Smoke Matters
  • Jeff Hossler/Flirtin’ with Disaster
  • John Humpe IV/Causin’ Trouble
  • Jordan Jackson/Billet Steel & Sex Appeal
  • Brian Shew/Iron Maiden
  • John Shriver/Thunder Struck
  • Nick Stamm/Frank
  • Roger Straley/Razor's Edge
  • Eric Widman/Big Red
  • Robert Widman/Boosted

Two Wheel Drive (Sat. noon)

  • Rick Austin/Dirt Flirt
  • Joey Frasur/Runnin’ Block
  • Brian Grifka/Apple Pie Express
  • David Koglin/Final Drive
  • Russ Nichols/On the Edge
  • Jessie PetroKathy’s Komplaint
  • Joe Schoenemann/Should’a Said No
  • Blake Widenmeyer/Smokeless

Pre-event tickets, which include admission to the farm show, are priced at $25 ($30 VIP) for Sessions One and Two and $30 ($35 VIP) for Session Three, while a weekend pass is $65 ($80 VIP). Children ages 4 through 10 will be admitted to any seat for $15/session. Day-of-show prices will increase.


Check ShopNTPA.com or O’Reilly Auto Parts Stores for discount pre-event tickets. Can’t make it all weekend? Catch the Live Stream at the all-new NTPA.tv on your PC, mobile device, or smart TV. For more information about the facility, visit MichianaEvents.com.

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Region II Modified Mini Champion David Lacey "Triple Play: Double or Nothing"

RN 2 Champs triple play double or nothing

Lacey earned his fifth title of the past five seasons, a span that has seen “Double” win the last two in Region II plus Region IV in 2017 and its trailermate “Unchained” be victorious in 2017 and 2015. More impressively, Lacey’s closest challenger for the past four titles has been...Lacey, who has also finished second on each occasion. The Canadian flag appeared on the podium 16 times in 32 combined 2019 appearances by the Triple-Ls. Eight of those were on the top step including six for “DoN,” which trailed the Bultmans’ “Stress Relief” only until Arcola. But despite the dominance, there was still a brass ring for Lacey to grab—an Enderle win—and he got it.

About National Tractor Pullers Association

The NTPA is the sport’s oldest and most respected truck and tractor pulling sanctioning organization. Governed by a board of directors, the NTPA is managed by World Pulling International (WPI), an independently owned entity. Headquartered in Worthington, Ohio, the NTPA provides rules and regulations and the infrastructures required for organizations throughout the country to arrange truck and tractor pulls.

The 2020 NTPA Championship Pulling Circuit is sponsored in part by Case IH, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Angry Farmer Products, Hot Shot's Secret, the Enderle Memorial Pull-Off, MAC Trailer, Ag Protect 1, Shell Rotella, STOP-FYRE®, Cen-Pe-Co Lubricants, Columbus Diesel Supply, Heritage Iron Magazine, Stainless Diesel, Midwest Wheel Inc., the National Tractor Pulling Championships in Bowling Green, Ohio, PowerBore Cylinder Sleeves, Profab Machine Inc., the Budweiser Dairyland Super Nationals in Tomah, Wisconsin, and Riverside Engine Inc.

Watch the 15th season of "NTPA Championship Pulling" presented by Case IH: Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. Eastern/5:30 p.m. Central. Encore performances appear on Mondays at 12:30 a.m. and 6 a.m. Eastern. RFD-TV is available on satellite through DirecTV (345), Dish Network (231), and AT&T (568) along with Spectrum/Time Warner, Brighthouse, Comcast, Charter, Suddenlink, Cox, and other cable providers. Check your current provider for details or visit the channel finder at www.rfdtv.com.

NTPA Live Streaming produced internet broadcasts of several national events in 2020. Visit NTPA.tv to purchase on-demand access to individual events. Or go all-in on the $299 Yearly Pass and get live and on-demand access to all streamed summertime NTPA events plus current and past episodes of "NTPA Championship Pulling" included! Purchase each stream or the package in your browser at NTPA.tv and watch there or via the NTPA.tv app on popular smart tv platforms including Roku, Amazon Fire, AppleTV, and AndroidTV and on both Apple iOS and Android mobile devices.

Subscribe to the Official Magazine of the NTPA! The Puller brings you the best in NTPA news, stories, and related pulling information. The PULL! Official Program and Souvenir Yearbook is carried in Tractor Supply Company (TSC) outlets.

Wear it loud! The NTPA's Webmall has pulling apparel in fresh, new designs for fans of all ages and sizes. Hats, event shirts, hoodies, pins, and patches all sport the iconic NTPA shield that represents excellence in premier-level pulling. Event, TV series, and special DVDs let you watch pulling action on your schedule. See it all at ShopNTPA.com.

For more information about the NTPA, visit our website, www.NTPAPULL.com, follow us on social media at our Facebook page (ntpapulling), Twitter (@NTPApull), YouTube (NTPApull), and Instagram (ntpa), or call the NTPA office at 614.436.1761.

Spring It On! NTPA to Invade Shipshewana’s Michiana Event Center March 20-21

NTPAPULLcom Shipshewana 2020Tickets are on sale now: ShopNTPA.com/tickets

NTPA Shipshewana Spring Nationals Competitor List

It's “Built for Big”---and back for more!

On Friday and Saturday, March 20 and 21, the Michiana Event Center and Grogg-Martin Auctioneers and Realty will proudly present the second annual Wakarusa Ag/Deutz-Fahr NTPA Shipshewana Spring Nationals Indoor Truck and Tractor Pull and Michiana Farm Show. Having been expanded to three sessions and seven competing divisions plus Exhibition Super Semis, the 2020 event will build on the tremendous success of the inaugural edition which converted the Center's gargantuan Trade Show Building into a regulation-length arena to the delight of thousands of first-time and long-time pulling fans alike.

Competitors in this internationally contested motorsport construct specialized, high-performance vehicles that resemble farm tractors, trucks, and dragsters in order to pull a weighted sled the greatest distance along a straight, dirt course. The National Tractor Pullers Association, the world's longest-tenured sanctioning organization, provides competition and safety rules and establishes divisions and circuits that resulted in the crowning of 45 national champions in 2019. In cooperation with its member states and promotional partners, the NTPA will present over 200 sessions of premier-level pulling competition in 2020, the Association's 51st season.

Located just minutes south of the Michigan state line in northern Indiana's Amish Country, the charming town of Shipshewana sits at the intersection of U.S. Route 20 and State Route 5. The MEC and surrounding restaurants and tourist attractions are easily accessible from the Indiana Toll Road and will provide a weekend's worth of entertainment for the whole family.

“We were simply blown away by the response in 2019 in our first year for this event at the MEC,” said the Center’s Jeff Fought. “We had fans attend from several states away, and I feel the building and time of the year are the perfect scenario for a national indoor pull.

“The response was so great we are doubling down by going to three sessions this year. We say the MEC was ‘Built For Big,’ and that’s what the Wakarusa Ag/Deutz-Fahr NTPA Spring Nationals will be!”

The Michiana Farm Show, admission to which is included with Spring Nationals tickets or may be purchased separately, will fill the Center's central Coliseum Building each afternoon. Meanwhile, its Staging Building will house the freely accessible pit area in which fans can meet and talk with their pulling heroes and see their mighty machines up close. Ample and free parking surrounds each building within the facility, and additional overflow parking is within a short walk.

Once inside the Trade Show Building, devotees of power and noise will be enthralled by the action that takes place on an installed clay track whose full length will permit the skilled drivers and their exotic vehicles to reach full speed and song. Screaming supercharged engines and bellowing turbocharged powerplants will spin tires large and small as they strive to beat the 30-ton weight transfer and drive up the ramp at the end of their 300' dirt road.

“NTPA is excited to return to Shipshewana for the Spring Nationals,” began Gregg Randall, the Association's General Manager. “This event exceeded everyone’s expectations for year one, and year two should see additional growth with the expansion to the third session and the divisions that now have their opportunity to compete on a 300'-plus track.

"Besides the farm show, attendees will have plenty to do and see in the heart of Amish country. This great invitational event is a must-see on any pulling fan's calendar! Moreover," Randall continued, "two days of pulling over the first weekend of spring will serve to warm up both drivers and spectators before the great 2020 regular season and the competitive tour that the Association has assembled.”

The NTPA Spring Nationals II will be conducted Friday at 6 p.m. (Session One) and Saturday at noon (Session Two) and 6 p.m. (Session Three). Each show will feature a slightly different slate of invitation-only classes from among the following NTPA Championship Pulling divisions: Super Farm Tractors (Sessions One and Two); Light Super Stock and Limited Pro Stock Tractors, Exhibition Super Semis, and Modified Minis (each in Sessions One and Three); Hot Farm Tractors and Two-Wheel-Drive Trucks (each in Session Two only); and Pro Stock Diesel 4x4 Trucks (Sessions Two and Three).

Discounted pre-event tickets for the Wakarusa Ag/Deutz-Fahr NTPA Shipshewana Spring Nationals and Michiana Farm Show presented by Grogg Martin Auctioneers and Realty are on sale at the MEC's Box Office (455 East Farver Street in Shipshewana; 260.768.4990) and at the checkout register at O'Reilly Auto Parts outlets nationwide. Moreover, electronic tickets are on sale 24/7 at ShopNTPA.com/tickets. Admission prices for adults (ages 11 and over) are as follows: Session One or Two, $25 bleacher/$30 VIP Trackside; Session Three, $30 bleacher/$35 VIP Trackside; Weekend Pass (all three sessions), $65 bleacher/$80 VIP Trackside. The admission price for children ages 4 through 10 is $15 per session (bleacher or trackside), with children 3 and under admitted free. Day-of-show adult ticket prices will increase.

Those who can't make it to one or all of the Wakarusa Ag/Deutz-Fahr NTPA Spring Nationals sessions may purchase and view the entire event at the all-new NTPA.tv. After signing up, viewers can enjoy the multi-camera presentation---narrated by the event's announcers and augmented by on-screen graphics and instant replays---from the convenience of their PC, phone, tablet, or smart TV via the NTPA.tv apps available on several platforms. (Subscribers to the NTPA.tvYearly Pass please note: Shipshewana is not included among the 2020 summer season event offerings and must be purchased separately.)

For more information about the Michiana Event Center, visit the facility's website, MichianaEvents.com, or contact the main office at 260.768.3300. To learn more about NTPA Championship Pulling, check out the Association's official website, NTPAPULL.com, or call 614.436.1761.

About National Tractor Pullers Association

The NTPA is the sport’s oldest and most respected truck and tractor pulling sanctioning organization. Governed by a board of directors, the NTPA is managed by World Pulling International (WPI), an independently owned entity. Headquartered in Worthington, Ohio, the NTPA provides rules and regulations and the infrastructures required for organizations throughout the country to arrange truck and tractor pulls.

The 2020 NTPA Championship Pulling Circuit is sponsored in part by Case IH, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Angry Farmer Products, Hot Shot's Secret, the Enderle Memorial Pull-Off, MAC Trailer, Ag Protect 1, Shell Rotella, STOP-FYRE®, Cen-Pe-Co Lubricants, Columbus Diesel Supply, Heritage Iron Magazine, Stainless Diesel, Midwest Wheel Inc., the National Tractor Pulling Championships in Bowling Green, Ohio, PowerBore Cylinder Sleeves, Profab Machine Inc., the Budweiser Dairyland Super Nationals in Tomah, Wisconsin, and Riverside Engine Inc.

Watch the 15th season of "NTPA Championship Pulling" presented by Case IH: Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. Eastern/5:30 p.m. Central. Encore performances appear on Mondays at 12:30 a.m. and 6 a.m. Eastern. RFD-TV is available on satellite through DirecTV (345), Dish Network (231), and AT&T (568) along with Spectrum/Time Warner, Brighthouse, Comcast, Charter, Suddenlink, Cox, and other cable providers. Check your current provider for details or visit the channel finder at www.rfdtv.com.

NTPA Live Streaming produced internet broadcasts of several national events in 2020. Visit NTPA.tv to purchase on-demand access to individual events. Or go all-in on the $299 Yearly Pass and get live and on-demand access to all streamed summertime NTPA events plus current and past episodes of "NTPA Championship Pulling" included! Purchase each stream or the package in your browser at NTPA.tv and watch there or via the NTPA.tv app on popular smart tv platforms including Roku, Amazon Fire, AppleTV, and AndroidTV and on both Apple iOS and Android mobile devices.

Subscribe to the Official Magazine of the NTPA! The Puller brings you the best in NTPA news, stories, and related pulling information. The PULL! Official Program and Souvenir Yearbook is carried in Tractor Supply Company (TSC) outlets.

Wear it loud! The NTPA's Webmall has pulling apparel in fresh, new designs for fans of all ages and sizes. Hats, event shirts, hoodies, pins, and patches all sport the iconic NTPA shield that represents excellence in premier-level pulling. Event, TV series, and special DVDs let you watch pulling action on your schedule. See it all at ShopNTPA.com.

For more information about the NTPA, visit our website, www.NTPAPULL.com, follow us on social media at our Facebook page (ntpapulling), Twitter (@NTPApull), YouTube (NTPApull), and Instagram (ntpa), or call the NTPA office at 614.436.1761.

Ollie Schaefer, Longtime Weight Transfer Operator, Has Passed; Update: Funeral Info

The WPI/NTPA office was notified of the passing on Friday, February 28 of Olver E. Schaefer, 80, of Greenville, Illinois. Mr. Schaefer built and operated weight transfers ("Schaefer Sled Rental") that regulated truck and tractor pulling contests for the NTPA and other organizations from the early 1970s through the 1980s.

A farmer and custom harvester in his youth, Mr. Schaefer was an Oliver dealership mechanic and salesman in southwestern Illinois. After being asked to participate in a step-on sled pull, Mr. Schaefer soon contributed his creative aptitude to the motorsport, briefly as a competitor and then as a transfer operator.

Ultimately, he and his family---wife Dee, daughters Sherry, Debbie (Sebastian), and Julie, and son Rich---along with several crewmen operated the rental business that supplied sleds to outdoor and indoor pulls at some of the sport's most prestigious venues including Louisville, Kentucky's Freedom Hall and the Houston Astrodome. In recent years, Mr. Schaefer restored and rebuilt a broad collection of Oliver tractors. Mr. Schaefer's full obituary may be found here.

Mr. Schaefer's loves of both pulling and legacy farm equipment were passed on to his children. Sherry owns and edits Heritage Iron Magazine, while Debbie (Sebastian) campaigned the "Nite Train" Four Wheel Drive for over a decade. Moreover, Debbie's daughter Candice is the wife of Light Pro Stock competitor Zach Howell.

Visitation for Mr. Schaefer's family and friends will be held on Monday, March 2 from 4 to 8 p.m. at the American Farm Heritage Museum, 1395 Museum Avenue, Greenville, Illinois 62246. His funeral service will be on Tuesday at 11 a.m. at Smith Grove Baptist Church, 949 Airport Avenue in Greenville. In lieu of flowers, please make memorials to the Farm Heritage Oliver Village Fund. Contributions may be made at the services or mailed to the Donnell-Wiegand Funeral Home, 203 West Oak Street in Greenville.

We express our deepest sympathy to Sherry, Debbie, Candice and Zach, and the entire Schaefer family.

Ralph Banter, Hall of Fame Modified Competitor, Has Passed; Update: Funeral Info

The WPI/NTPA office was notified of the passing in the early morning hours of February 15 of Ralph Banter, 79, of LaFontaine, Indiana. Alongside his brother Dave, Mr. Banter won the greatest number of national championships in NTPA history, all in Modified divisions.

The first of those titles arrived in 1973 in the 7,000-lb. class, though the brothers had already been competing in automotive-engine divisions for several years prior to the inception of the national Association in 1969. In those early years, the elder Ralph and younger Dave would exchange driving and wrenching roles depending upon how they did at the previous hook. Eventually, Ralph's talents as a trained machinist shone through to the benefit of both his own team and the many others who purchased his customized performance parts and exotic designs. Then, when the lumber mill at which he worked was destroyed in a fire, Mr. Banter's sideline business became a full-time occupation, and Banter Machine was born.  

"Our customers are our friends," he explained in the brothers' Hall-of-Fame profile in the January 2000 issue of The Puller Magazine. "A lot of the guys will call me after they compete and tell me how everything went. I like that. I'm just plain folk."

That lack of embellishment extended to the identification of the Banters' early Modifieds. Once there were two at a time---and thus a need to tell them apart---they were simply known as "Brown" and "Orange" across several upgrades through the 1970s. A collaboration with John Hileman yielded "The Pup" lightweight twin-engine Mod in 1980, but the brothers did nearly all of their winning in the heavier classes: six titles at 7,000 or 7,200 lbs., seven at 9,000 or 9,200 lbs., and five more at 12,200 lbs.

A Big Ben/Wrangler sponsorship in the early 1980s switched up the color scheme to "Blue" and "Orange," and the brothers later paid homage to their trusted powerplants with the five- or six-engine "Mr. Chevy" before wrapping up their on-track careers with the five- to seven-engine "Bandit." With these final Mods, Ralph and Dave built and drove their way to four Unlimited titles in six seasons to bring their Grand National total to an astounding 22. The brothers' dominance came with setups that seldom sported the most raw horsepower but instead made use of each brother's gifts to maximize their potential.

The Banter Brothers were honored by the NTPA in 1999 with their induction and that same year by pulling fans who voted them the greatest pullers of the Association's first 30 years. But these awards didn't signal a retirement of Ralph's indefatigable mind. "I plan on hanging in as long as I can and as long as the folks need me," Ralph explained in the brothers' profile. As a result of his devotion to innovation, willingness to experiment, and dedication to improvement, Mr. Banter's influence on Modified pulling and on the motorsport at large is incalculable.

Away from the pulling track and shop, Mr. Banter served as Vice President on the NTPA Executive Board from 1980 to 1982 and as a director and treasurer of Indiana Pullers Incorporated. A deacon and trustee of Banquo Christian Church, he also rebuilt and restored antique vehicles and belonged to the Differentials Car Club.

Mr. Banter is survived by Margaret, his wife of 58 years; daughter Sherry (Terry) Knight; brothers Ira, David (Jorita), and Michael (Judy); grandchildren Kristen (Brent) Freiburger, Shannon (Brian) Eddie, Megan (Ben) Whitaker, Erin (Arjun) Bhalla, and Matthew Knight of Van Buren; great-grandchildren Aydan LaFond, Kyen Freiburger, Theodore Eddie, Elijah Eddie, Thomas Eddie, Lela Eddie, Maci Whitaker, Natalie Whitaker, and Benjamin Whitaker; and nieces Kim Banter, Heather (Rich) Holmes, and Heidi (Aaron) Bleich.

Visitation for family and friends of Mr. Banter is scheduled for Wednesday, February 19 from 2 to 8 p.m. at Bailey-Love Mortuary, 35 West Park Drive, Huntington, Indiana 46750. Visitation will resume on Thursday for one hour prior to the funeral service, which will begin at 11 a.m. Preferred memorials are to Banquo Christian Church or Cancer Services for Huntington County, in care of Bailey-Love Mortuary.

Our thoughts are with Margaret and the Banter family as well as Ralph and Dave's extended pulling family as they grieve their loss.

Hot Shot’s Secret Joins NTPA as Sponsor

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The National Tractor Pullers Association (NTPA) recently welcomed Hot Shot’s Secret™ of Mt. Gilead, Ohio as a sponsor of NTPA truck and tractor pulling. The new three-year sponsorship agreement kicks off in 2020 and boasts a plethora of benefits for both the NTPA and Hot Shot’s Secret, a brand of high performance specially formulated oils and additives for diesel and gas-powered engines and fuel systems.

“Hot Shot’s Secret is a welcome addition to NTPA’s diverse group of sponsors,” said NTPA General Manager Gregg Randall. “Based on experience, Hot Shot’s Secret aligns itself well with our demographics and audience. Their three-year commitment to us gives us the ability to penetrate the market with their message all year long through our more than 70 events, weekly television series and online universe. Thanks to Joshua Steinmetz for his active role in facilitating a relationship between our companies.”

Digital Marketing Manager for Hot Shot’s Secret, Joshua Steinmetz, is a familiar face to many within the NTPA, as he spent the past decade as NTPA’s digital communications director, overseeing the website, social media and scoreboards. “Having a thorough understanding of the NTPA and close personal relationships with their top tier drivers allows me to assist Hot Shot’s Secret in taking the best possible advantage of this sponsorship.” stated Steinmetz. “In addition to participating in this highly competitive sport, most of these drivers are professionals in the agriculture market, the semi-truck industry and in the agricultural supply business. We look forward to developing a strong and lasting partnership with the association and their competitors.”

Through this partnership, Hot Shot’s Secret will be known as the official Fuel Additive of the NTPA. During the 2020 pulling season, the company will be represented at over 70 NTPA Grand and Regional National events across the United States. Hot Shot’s Secret will be a supporting sponsor of the NTPA Championship Pulling series presented by Case IH Agriculture, shown weekly on RFD-TV. The company also gains access to promotional opportunities with NTPA publications, scoreboards and video features on social media.Hot Shots Secret

Hot Shot’s Secret offers a diverse line of more than 30 high performance and preventative maintenance products. These include fuel and oil additives, engine and gear oil, greases, lubricants and lubricity additives, and coolants as problem-specific solutions for gas- and diesel-powered vehicles of all makes and models. Major markets include heavy-duty, commercial fleet, powersports, RV, agricultural and industrial. The company’s flagship product, Hot Shot’s Secret Stiction Eliminator, is the top selling brand for the removal of static friction.

Hot Shot’s Secret’s parent company, Lubrication Specialties Inc. (LSI), specializes in innovative product development with a focus on resolving problem-specific solutions for equipment across a broad list of markets. In addition to the company’s development of Hot Shot’s Secret, LSI provides chemical-based product development for private label. For more information on Hot Shot’s Secret’s engine oils and additives visit hotshotsecret.com. To speak directly with a Hot Shot’s Secret highly qualified technician, call toll free 800-341-6516.

About National Tractor Pullers Association

The NTPA is the sport’s oldest and most respected truck and tractor pulling sanctioning organization. Governed by a board of directors, the NTPA is managed by World Pulling International (WPI), an independently owned entity. Headquartered in Worthington, Ohio, the NTPA provides rules and regulations and the infrastructures required for organizations throughout the country to arrange truck and tractor pulls.

The 2020 NTPA Championship Pulling Circuit is sponsored in part by Case IH, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Angry Farmer Products, Hot Shot's Secret, the Enderle Memorial Pull-Off, MAC Trailer, Ag Protect 1, Shell Rotella, STOP-FYRE®, Cen-Pe-Co Lubricants, Columbus Diesel Supply, Heritage Iron Magazine, Stainless Diesel, Midwest Wheel Inc., the National Tractor Pulling Championships in Bowling Green, Ohio, PowerBore Cylinder Sleeves, Profab Machine Inc., the Budweiser Dairyland Super Nationals in Tomah, Wisconsin, and Riverside Engine Inc.

Watch the 15th season of "NTPA Championship Pulling" presented by Case IH: Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. Eastern/5:30 p.m. Central. Encore performances appear on Mondays at 12:30 a.m. and 6 a.m. Eastern. RFD-TV is available on satellite through DirecTV (345), Dish Network (231), and AT&T (568) along with Spectrum/Time Warner, Brighthouse, Comcast, Charter, Suddenlink, Cox, and other cable providers. Check your current provider for details or visit the channel finder at www.rfdtv.com.

NTPA Live Streaming produced internet broadcasts of several national events in 2020. Visit NTPA.tv to purchase on-demand access to individual events. Or go all-in on the $299 Yearly Pass and get live and on-demand access to all streamed summertime NTPA events plus current and past episodes of "NTPA Championship Pulling" included! Purchase each stream or the package in your browser at NTPA.tv and watch there or via the NTPA.tv app on popular smart tv platforms including Roku, Amazon Fire, AppleTV, and AndroidTV and on both Apple iOS and Android mobile devices.

Subscribe to the Official Magazine of the NTPA! The Puller brings you the best in NTPA news, stories, and related pulling information. The PULL! Official Program and Souvenir Yearbook is carried in Tractor Supply Company (TSC) outlets.

Wear it loud! The NTPA's Webmall has pulling apparel in fresh, new designs for fans of all ages and sizes. Hats, event shirts, hoodies, pins, and patches all sport the iconic NTPA shield that represents excellence in premier-level pulling. Event, TV series, and special DVDs let you watch pulling action on your schedule. See it all at ShopNTPA.com.

For more information about the NTPA, visit our website, www.NTPAPULL.com, follow us on social media at our Facebook page (ntpapulling), Twitter (@NTPApull), YouTube (NTPApull), and Instagram (ntpa), or call the NTPA office at 614.436.1761.

Region III Limited Pro Stock Champion Roger Scalzo "Bad to the Bone"

RN 3 Champs bad to the bone

It’s an oft-repeated refrain (and we don’t mean “B-b-b-b-b-b-ba-ad”): “Consistency wins championships.” Scalzo perfected that chorus to author his first hit record without a number-one song: Six top-fives and nine top-10s came on his 11-show victory tour. “Bone” earned fourths in Ellsworth and Bloomington and a sixth in River Falls while the Ploetzes’ “Big One” headlined each time. But Scalzo gained 10 points on the charts by finishing second in Anoka while “Big One” plummeted to 13th. Two more runner-ups in Menomonie and Weyauwega surrounded a third place in Colby and put “Bad” in a good spot—second—headed to Ridgeland. There, a sixth over “Big One”’s 11th left Scalzo satisfied.

About National Tractor Pullers Association

The NTPA is the sport’s oldest and most respected truck and tractor pulling sanctioning organization. Governed by a board of directors, the NTPA is managed by World Pulling International (WPI), an independently owned entity. Headquartered in Worthington, Ohio, the NTPA provides rules and regulations and the infrastructures required for organizations throughout the country to arrange truck and tractor pulls.

The 2020 NTPA Championship Pulling Circuit is sponsored in part by Case IH, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Angry Farmer Products, Hot Shot's Secret, the Enderle Memorial Pull-Off, MAC Trailer, Ag Protect 1, Shell Rotella, STOP-FYRE®, Cen-Pe-Co Lubricants, Columbus Diesel Supply, Heritage Iron Magazine, Stainless Diesel, Midwest Wheel Inc., the National Tractor Pulling Championships in Bowling Green, Ohio, PowerBore Cylinder Sleeves, Profab Machine Inc., the Budweiser Dairyland Super Nationals in Tomah, Wisconsin, and Riverside Engine Inc.

Watch the 15th season of "NTPA Championship Pulling" presented by Case IH: Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. Eastern/5:30 p.m. Central. Encore performances appear on Mondays at 12:30 a.m. and 6 a.m. Eastern. RFD-TV is available on satellite through DirecTV (345), Dish Network (231), and AT&T (568) along with Spectrum/Time Warner, Brighthouse, Comcast, Charter, Suddenlink, Cox, and other cable providers. Check your current provider for details or visit the channel finder at www.rfdtv.com.

NTPA Live Streaming produced internet broadcasts of several national events in 2020. Visit NTPA.tv to purchase on-demand access to individual events. Or go all-in on the $299 Yearly Pass and get live and on-demand access to all streamed summertime NTPA events plus current and past episodes of "NTPA Championship Pulling" included! Purchase each stream or the package in your browser at NTPA.tv and watch there or via the NTPA.tv app on popular smart tv platforms including Roku, Amazon Fire, AppleTV, and AndroidTV and on both Apple iOS and Android mobile devices.

Subscribe to the Official Magazine of the NTPA! The Puller brings you the best in NTPA news, stories, and related pulling information. The PULL! Official Program and Souvenir Yearbook is carried in Tractor Supply Company (TSC) outlets.

Wear it loud! The NTPA's Webmall has pulling apparel in fresh, new designs for fans of all ages and sizes. Hats, event shirts, hoodies, pins, and patches all sport the iconic NTPA shield that represents excellence in premier-level pulling. Event, TV series, and special DVDs let you watch pulling action on your schedule. See it all at ShopNTPA.com.

For more information about the NTPA, visit our website, www.NTPAPULL.com, follow us on social media at our Facebook page (ntpapulling), Twitter (@NTPApull), YouTube (NTPApull), and Instagram (ntpa), or call the NTPA office at 614.436.1761.

Don Kortbein, Tomah Event Co-Founder, Has Passed; Update:Obituary Info

IMG 7240 loWith regret, the WPI/NTPA office must report the passing on Wednesday, February 12 of Donald D. Kortbein, 85, of Tomah, Wisconsin. Mr. Kortbein was a co-founder of the Budweiser Dairyland Super Nationals and a longtime member of the Monroe County Agricultural Society, the event's promotional group since its inception.

Having started at the Farmers & Merchants Bank in Tomah right after his graduation from high school, Mr. Kortbein retired as its CEO and President in 2000 after a 48-year career. In addition to several professional organizations and community boards, he served the Monroe County Ag Society for nearly 60 years---40 years as its treasurer---and as co-chairman of its signature tractor pulling event.

Mr. Kortbein was a friend to many in both the Tomah Tractor Pull and NTPA families. "Don and I have been good friends for the last 50 years," said Dave Schreier, retired President and CEO of WPI and a fellow co-founder of the Dairyland Nationals. "Don was totally dedicated from the very beginning to making the Tomah tractor pull what it has been for 45 years! He will be greatly missed, not only by the Ag Society and pull staff but also the whole Tomah community."

A 2010 Wisconsin Association of Fairs Hall of Fame inductee, Mr. Kortbein served the Tomah Chamber of Commerce as its president and received the Chamber's Community Service Award and its Distinguished Service Award. He was recognized by the Tomah Convention and Visitors Bureau and Lions, respectively, for his contributions to Tomah's agriculture and travel industries, and he worked tirelessly to get a new building constructed for his home church, St. Matthew's Lutheran of Warrens.

He is survived by his loving wife Evelyn, daughter Suzanne, son Tim, daughter-in-law Joan, grandsons Matthew and Mark, nephew Greg, niece Cynthia (Rick) Erdman, sister-in-law Judi Downing, brother-in-law Lynn (Yvonne) LaFlash, and many other relatives and friends.

We extend our sympathy to Evelyn, to the Kortbeins, and to our friends in Monroe County.

Modified Mini Competitor Jim Schaendorf's Father Has Passed; Update: Obituary

The WPI/NTPA family is saddened to report the passing on Wednesday, February 5 of William Schaendorf, 79, of Dorr, Michigan. Mr. Schaendorf was the father and grandfather of Modified Mini competitors Jim and Tyler Schaendorf (Max'd Out).

In addition to reclaiming the family farm nearly 50 years ago, Mr. Schaendorf and his brother Bob built over 1,400 homes in western Michigan.

Along with Bob and his wife Linda, Jim and his wife Lisa, and Tyler (Cassie) and his sister Ashley (Colten) DeHaan, Mr. Schaendorf is survived by his daughter Debbie (Ken) Schafer and their children Cody and Morgan. Mr. Schaendorf's complete obituary may be found here, and condolences may be left for the family.

Visitation for Mr. Schaendorf's family and friends is scheduled for Sunday, February 9 from 2 to 4 p.m and 6 to 8 p.m. at Kubiak-Cook Funeral Home, 4330 18th Street, Dorr, Michigan 49323. Visitation will continue for one hour prior to his funeral service, which will be held on Monday at 11 a.m. at St. Peter's Evangelical Lutheran Church, 4125 18th Street in Dorr.

Our deepest sympathies are with Jim, Lisa, Tyler, Ashley, and the entire Schaendorf family on the occasion of their loss.

Contact Info

ADDRESS:
National Tractor Pullers Association
6155-B Huntley Road,
Columbus, OH 43229


PHONE: (614) 436-1761

FAX: (614) 436-0964