Swamp speedsters: Thai farmers race their tractors

NTD Newsroom
By NTD Newsroom
April 23, 2017World News

Farmers in Thailand take time to have some fun before the busy planting season starts by waterproofing their rice-paddy tractors and racing through swamps.

Rural farmers call these tractors “iron buffalo.” With their long handles, they are not far removed from traditional plowing rigs pulled by buffalo or oxen used for millennia to farm these paddies.

The farmers modify the engines to boost the power, and add plastic sheeting to keep the water out.

“Most of the modified tractors would cost around almost $300,” said Charin Thaicharoen, 48-year old farmer from Pitsanulok Province.

“Some teams hire mechanics too, so those could cost up to $600 for each truck,” he said.

Wearing no more safety gear than hard hats or bicycle helmets, they race over prepared course.

Once the planting season starts, these farmers will be using every available hour and every bit of energy nurturing their cops, hoping to make enough to survive through the off-season.

If there is any money left over … why not spend a little for an afternoon of muddy fun?

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