The NTPA 320 pulloff rule- a debacle!

Published September 10, 2012 09:18AM, by Dick MorganViewed: 2754 times

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Tractor and truck pulling is one of the motorsports that really has no finals, no grand finally. Some times pulling looks like a tractor show, not a competition of vehicles where a winner can be easily seen. Face it, some classes with a large number of vehicles become diluted to the point that it just seems to run on and on. While large classes are a plus for the ticket buying fan it also can become overwhelming and confusing to distinguish the class winner. With 20 or more vehicles in a class and if the first pullers goes 299’ and all the rest in the class go 298 or less the show loses it excitement. The NTPA 300-320- Floating finish rule is a debacle. It’s time to make a change in the fullpull-pulloff format that the NTPA has in place. Lets start with the reason to change. the rule.

1- No one understands the rule; the fans and announcers are completely clueless when it comes to the rule.

2- It totally takes any excitement out of the pull, when the rule is so confusing the announcers never are able to explain who is in the pulloff and the fan is also confused to the status of what vehicles will return.

3- In some events there is no pulloff and some events almost all, if not all the vehicles that hook go past the 320 line return for a pulloff.

The lucky winner
It’s time to rethink the entire pull-pulloff rule. Here are some ideas to that end.

1- Have a certain number of vehicles return in each class for a pulloff. If there are less than 15 in the class the top 3 returns for a pulloff, 15-25, 4 return, 26-or more, 5 return,. This will totally eliminate the problem of a class that has 23 in and 13 make the pulloff, i.e. the GN TWD class at Greenville.

2- Have a pulloff in every class, the top qualifying vehicles return for a pulloff regardless of the distance pulled on the first hook, in other words through out the 300 foot rule. Only rule the 300-foot distance as a guideline for the sled settings.

3- Award bonus points and money to the farthest distance in the first hook giving the pullers an incentive to win both rounds in the class. . For instance if you pull the farthest on the first hook you receive 5 points if there are 5 in the pulloff, 4 if there are 4 in the pulloff and so on. If a puller does not return for the pulloff the bonus points are not awarded.

4-One thing that has to be stressed is this does not give the sled operator, comp director freedom to set the sled light so everyone goes 350 the first time around, safety to the pullers, fans, track crew and officials always needs to be paramount in any event.

This format will do several things; first and foremost it will give the fans an exciting and dramatic finish to each and every class. Second it will eliminate the problem of to few or to many in a pulloff. Third it will eliminate the floating finish in all but the most unusal situations, [weather, lighting etc.].

I think it’s time for pulling to add a new level of excitement to their shows. It’s time for the NTPA to change their pulling format.

Edited 8 time(s). Last edit at 01/10/2013 11:13PM by Dick Morgan.


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