On a blistering Sunday afternoon, there was a solid crowd to watch the Michael Peterson/New Holland Celebrity Tractor Race held in downtown Nashville during the CMA Music Festival - and nearly 30 celebrities to face the challenging course. The spectators fanned, slathered on sun screen, draped their necks with the free sports towels that were given away and settled in to cheer for their favorites during the exciting two-hour event.
In the background stood the nearly finished Schermerhorn Symphony Hall, a block further was the Country Music Hall of Fame and to the right we could see the trees and the auction tents in the Hall of Fame Park.
Some of the other participants: Bryan White, Jimmy Olander, Richard Oermann, Bobby Pinson, Rhett Akins, John Berry, Tanya Tucker, Brandon Kenny, Titans Kicker Criag Hentrich, Colt Prather, Deborah Allen, Memarie, Wood Bradshaw, Captain Russell Bailes, Bekka Bramlett, Billy Yates, Tanya Tucker ...
A New Holland Boomer tractor, signed by the celebrity participants will be auctioned on E-bay for the benefit of the artists' chartities. Wade was racing for Habitat for Humanity.
Each was given a minute or two of instruction upon mounting the tractor. By the rules a driver could only use the forward and reverse pedals - penalties were incurred for failure to follow those guidelines.
The course was laid off with traffic cones and hay bales. Hitting one of those also added a penalty of additional seconds. Several times the hay bales were sent tumbling.
Each driver had to maneuver the tight course twice and then back into the designated parking space. A green flag signalled the start time and a checkered flag signalled the stop.
After all contestants had completed a run, a race-off was needed. Russell Bailes and Wade each had a time of 56 seconds. On his second run, Bailes bested his time by one second, Wade beat his by two to claim the trophy. A very exciting event!
For a news release on the race, follow this link:
Wade Hayes Wins Tractor Race