Tuesday, October 23, 2012


The city motto of Rockdale reads, "Great Events Happen Here", and with the conclusion of the Rockdale Fair and Rodeo event, the motto has definitely been proven accurate.  Listed by the US Census Bureau as 3.1 square miles, during rodeo and fair weekend, this small Texas town is likely to have one of the largest population density figures in the state.  Rockdale was founded in 1873, as a stop on the International -Great Northern Railroad line, and was named by B.F. Ackerman as she viewed the end of the railroad line from atop a rock formation overlooking the area.  The Rockdale Fairgrounds features a Texas Horse Racing Hall of Fame listed racetrack, dating back to the early 1900's, and is home to the birthplace of rodeo 'bulldogging', a technique first developed by Bill Pickett in Rockdale in 1903.  The Milam County area has a rich history in rodeo and equestrian events, and the LSGTPA show rolled into Rockdale to provide a horsepower display for the crowd, on the historic fairgrounds horse racing track.

The Youth Class tractors were first out of the starting gate, and Jared Stephan took the win aboard his John Deere entry.  Aidan Hovind, aboard his 'Yes Deere' tractor, took the second place position with the Kody Langham entry pulling to a third place finish.  Lane Duncan, aboard his  'Texas T-Rex', scored a fourth place finish in a tough Youth Class field of tractors.

Jared Stephan pulls to victory at the Rockdale Fair and Rodeo (Ashley Jesko photo)

Aidan Hovind pulls 'Yes Deere' downtrack at the Rockdale Fair and Rodeo tractor pull.  (Ashley Jesko photo)

Lane Duncan jockeys the 'Texas T-Rex', at the historic Rockdale Fairgrounds racetrack (Ashley Jesko photo)

The Stock Class title belt was taken by Garin Mason, aboard his belt drive Sears Super Suburban tractor.  Steve McCarley pulled to a second place finish, with Alton Degner anchoring the third place position.  Chris Harper placed fourth and Claude Lewis Sr. managed a top five finish.  Curtis Phelps and Skeet Degner rounded out the Stock Class pulling field.    In the Big Stock Class, it was Chancy Williams with the 'win',  John Aufdenkamp with the 'place', and Connie Jesko for the 'show' finish positions. 

Garin Mason drives to a first place finish at the Rockdale LSGTPA event. (Ashley Jesko photo)

Chancy Williams pulls to a win at the Rockdale Fair and Rodeo (Ashley Jesko photo)

Stock Altered tractors were led by Alex Jesko, with Garin Mason pulling to second place.  Michael Mayberry and his 'Pulling For Peanuts' entry, pulled to third place with John Aufdenkamp finishing in the fourth spot.  The Super Stock win was taken by Ken Langham, aboard his alcohol burning Cub Cadet, with Chancy Williams finishing in the runner-up position.  The Motorcycle Class title belonged to Steve Pierce, after the dust settled, with Todd Hickerson placing second. 

Connie Jesko pulls at the Rockdale Fair and Rodeo LSGTPA event. (Ashley Jesko photo)

The entertaining Outlaw Class tractors took center stage, with Ken Langham, Sr. pulling out the victory.  John Aufdenkamp, aboard 'Three Of A Kind' pulled to a second place finish, with Todd Hickerson finishing third.  The Mini Rod Class tractors thrilled the crowd with a close battle, with Sarah Moody piloting her '99% Moody' turbocharged diesel, to the victory.  Jerry Toland and his 'Shinin Time' tractor, pulled to a runner-up finish, with Colby Crowe and his 'Weekend Warrior' finishing the weekend in third.

Steve Pierce aboard 'Buzzards Roost' at the Rockdale Fairgrounds (Ashley Jesko photo)

Sarah Moody and the '99% Moody' John Deere at the Rockdale LSGTPA event.  (Ashley Jesko photo)

 The wild Super Rod Tractors closed the show, with a victory scoring performance by Sam Carroll and his 'PawPaws Pull Toy' tractor.  Jerry Toland finished second, aboard his 'Dodge This' tractor, with Donny Mayo pulling to a top three finish aboard his 'Blackfoot Squaw' tractor.  Randall Moody and his 'Ridge Runner' tractor pulled to fourth and the 'ScatCat' tractor of Tyler McCarley turned in a top five finish. 

Jerry Toland aboard 'Dodge This' at the Rockdale Fair and Rodeo

Sam Carroll and his 'PawPaws Pull Toy' on the front stretch at Rockdale

The Rockdale Fair and Rodeo Tractor Pull was the final event of the LSGTPA 2012 pulling season.  Visit the www.LSGTPA.com for more information and for updates on the 2013 pulling schedule.  Check out the LSGTPA Facebook page to view all of the 2012 photos !!


For more information on the history of Rockdale and Milam County, visit:


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

LSGTPA Teams Prepare for Rockdale Fair

The final event for the LSGTPA tractor pulling teams in 2012 will be this Saturday, October 20th, at high noon.  The pulling teams and their iron horses will head to Rockdale, Texas for the season finale.  It could not be scripted any better, having these iron horse jockeys compete on a Texas Horse Racing Hall of Fame Race Track, that is the Milam County Fairgrounds track.  The historic facility hosted horse racing in the early 1900's.

Maps and details for the LSGTPA event can be found at www.LSGTPA.com

Monday, October 15, 2012

Grayson County Fair LSGTPA Results

Loy Lake Park provided the backdrop for a stampede of several hundred horses, as the LSGTPA tractor pulling teams filled the Woody Blanton Memorial Arena on a Friday night.  Held in conjunction with the Grayson County Fair, the pulling teams converged on the birth place of our 34th President Dwight D. Eisenhower, also known as Denison Texas, to compete for class titles and championship points.  One of the most famous pullers of all time once hailed from Denison, as 'Doc' Holliday operated his dental practice in the booming railroad town during the 1870's. 

Opening ceremonies kicked off with our National Anthem presentation, by Synergy Choir member Bailey Melvin, under the lights of the Loy Lake Park outdoor rodeo arena.  The Youth Class pullers then started the show with plenty of action, as the top four pullers of the night recorded Full Pulls in the opening round.  Aidan Hovind placed his 'Yes Deere' tractor, from the Mean Green Pulling Team camp, in first place.  Kody Langham followed with his Bonham Service Center Cub Cadet, and Jared Stephan placed his Moody Pulling Team entry in the third spot.  Lane Duncan and his 'Texas T-Rex' scored a Full Pull, and held on for a fourth place finish.  Katyn Yarborough finished in the top five with Cassidy Bramlett rounding out the tough class of young pullers. 

In Stock, Steve McCarley scored a victory over Garin Mason and Alton Degner.  Skeet Degner finished fourth over Claude Lewis, Sr. and Kolby Langham held off Chris Harper for the sixth place spot.    The Big Stock pullers were led by Shawn Aufdenkamp and Connie Jesko, with the lady pullers finishing one-two.  Garin Mason placed his entry in the third place spot, over John Aufdenkamp's fourth place finish.  Kolby Langham pulled his way to a top five finish, just ahead of Patrick Bramlett.     Shawn Aufdenkamp took the Stock Altered class title on the tricky arena surface. 

The Super Stock title belonged to Alex Jesko, with his victory over  Ken Langham.  The Motorcycle pullers saw Steve Pierce and Todd Hickerson both using Full Pulls, to finish first and second.  The high powered Outlaw Class tractors came out of the gate, with John Aufdenkamp sitting atop the field over Ken Langham Sr., and Todd Hickerson.  The Mini Rod action featured some very close pulling, with Jerry Toland taking the title aboard 'Shinin Time'.  Tommy Kimmons finished second, by a margin of victory of  approximately one inch, over Colby Crowe and the 'Weekend Warrior' machine.  David Houchen piloted his 'Back In The Day' tractor to fourth place, with Sarah Moody and her '99% Moody' John Deere pulling to a top five.

The Super Rod tractors closed the show, with James Moody piloting 'Varooom' out of the back gate with a Full Pull to take the title.  Jerry Toland and his 'Dodge This' entry anchored the runner up spot, while Donny Mayo pulled to a third place showing.  Tyler McCarley rebounded from a blown engine in Farmersville, to place his 'ScatCat' tractor in fourth place.  Randall Moody took home a top five finish aboard his 'Ridge Runner' tractor.  The action under the lights of Woody Blanton Memorial Arena concluded for the evening, but the Loy Lake Park action continues on with the Grayson County Fair. 

Named for Judge Jake J. Loy, 1887-1945, the park will also be home to a spectacular Christmas light display this holiday season.   Loy Lake Park is also home to the Frontier Village of Grayson County, which features pioneer cabins, blacksmith shop, and historic school house exhibits.  While the action at Loy Lake Park is just getting started, the LSGTPA pulling action will move to Rockdale, Texas for the final event of the season.


Tuesday, October 9, 2012


Farmersville, Texas was founded in 1849 by local farmers, and was a major railroad shipping point for the agricultural industry of the area.  The Kansas City Southern railroad still runs through town, as does the historic Chaparral Rail Trail.  At the junction of these tracks, at the Rike Street Park, the LSGTPA set up a track of their own, to battle for the Old Time Saturday tractor pulling title.  Cool temperatures welcomed the pulling teams and fans, as the competition began at high noon. 

Opening ceremonies began with an outstanding performance of the National Anthem by Ashliegh Lisset.  The seventeen year old, Nashville recording artist and Texas native, scheduled the stop at Farmersville after an invitation by one of her fans, Lane Duncan, who would be pulling at the event.  Lisset had just completed her debut album, 'Misunderstood',  and graciously accepted the invite to perform in Farmersville.

Ashliegh Lisset performs the National Anthem in Farmersville.

After Lisset's stirring rendition of the Anthem, the Youth Class pullers took the stage in front of an excited crowd and put on a great show that included two Full Pull's by Jared Stephan and Lane Duncan.  After the second round, Jared Stephan held the lead for the win over Lane Duncan and his 'Texas T-Rex' tractor, by a margin of just two feet !  Katyn Yarborough placed her tractor in the third place position, with Cassidy Bramlett finishing fourth and Kody Langham placing fifth. 

Jared Stephan pulls to a victory during Old Time Saturday.

Lane Duncan records a Full Pull during Old Time Saturday in Farmersville.
Katyn Yarborough pulls to a top three finish in Farmersville.
Cassidy Bramlett scores a top five finish in Farmersville.

In Stock, Alton Degner pulled to the victory by less than one foot, over the second place tractor of Claude Lewis, Sr.   Steve McCarley pulled to third place with Garin Mason and Thomas Kimmons placing in the top five.  Chris Harper, Curtis Phelps and Skeet Degner rounded out the top of the Stock pullers.  The Big Stock title was taken by Patrick Bramlett, over the Aufdenkamp team of John and Shawn finishing second and third.  Connie Jesko turned in a fourth place finish while Kolby Langham managed a top five finish.  Len Hickerson and Chancy Williams rounded out the field.    Shawn Aufdenkamp took the win in Stock Altered, with Garin Mason pulling to the runnerup spot and Alex Jesko finishing third. 
Patrick Bramlett scores a victory during Old Time Saturday pulling action.

In Super Stock, Ken Langham piloted his wild, alcohol burning Cub Cadet to the victory over Chancy Williams.  In the Motorcycle Class, Steve Pierce took the win over Todd Hickerson.    The Outlaw Class title was taken by John Aufdenkamp and his 'Three of a Kind', triple engine tractor.  Todd Hickerson managed a runnerup finish, with Ken Langham Sr. taking the third place spot.  The always entertaining Mini Rod tractor class, had Jerry Toland aboard 'Shinin Time',  taking the victory with Sarah Moody finishing in the runnerup spot with her '99% Moody' John Deere.  Tommy Kimmons pulled to a third place finish with David Houchen and 'Back In The Day' placing fourth Colby Crowe pulled to fifth aboard his 'Weekend Warrior' tractor.

Sarah Moody puts her '99% Moody' John Deere in second place at Farmersville.

Tommy Kimmons hangs the tires on a pull in Farmersville.

David Houchen and 'Back In The Day'  debut in Farmersville.

'Weekend Warrior' pilot Colby Crowe at work in Farmersville.

The wild Super Rod Class tractors closed a great show, with Sam Carroll and 'PawPaw's Pull Toy' taking the victory over James Moody's 'Varooom' tractor.  Tyler McCarley posted a top three finish, with a wild final pull that grenaded the engine in his 'ScatCat' tractor.  Jerry Toland placed his 'Dodge This' machine in fourth.  Randall Moody pulled to a fifth place finish aboard the 'Ridge Runner',  with Donny Mayo finishing in the sixth spot.

Sam Carroll takes 'PawPaws Pull Toy' to the winner circle in Farmersville.

The LSGTPA will have a short week to prepare for the next event, as the teams will be competing at the Grayson County Fair in Denison this Friday night, October 12, at the outdoor arena in Loy Lake Park.  Start time is scheduled for 7pm, with opening ceremonies to include the National Anthem presentation by Bailey Melvin.  Visit the www.LSGTPA.com website for additional details. 

Ashliegh Lisset tries on the 'Texas T-Rex' in Farmersville.

LSGTPA Youth Class winners at Old Time Saturday.

Ashliegh Lisset is presented an honorary trophy for her National Anthem performance.
Ashley Jesko and Richard Duncan photos.