Undertaking a 24 hour ploughing marathon is a considerable feat of endurance on a modern tractor but last weekend (March 7 and 8) Perthshire man Dougie McNicoll completed the challenge without any modern technology.
Instead he relied on his trusty 1944 Fordson N tractor coupled to a 1930s Massey Harris two furrow trailing plough.
Starting on his plot at midday on Saturday he ploughed non-stop until midday on Sunday turning over eight and a half acres of land at Gordon Nicholson’s Welton Farm, Blairgowrie.
During the daylight hours he was accompanied by fellow ploughing enthusiasts from all over Scotland on adjacent rigs.
These included former world ploughing champions David Carnegie and Andrew Mitchell, no fewer than nine demonstration rigs from local machinery dealers and some fine examples of older tractors and equipment .
There was also a horse ploughing demonstration and a charity auction to round off the event.
The marathon was held in aid of Parkinson’s Scotland.
Mr McNicoll, brought up on farms but now an HGV driver with a Forfar firm, said: “My father and I had planned this 18 months ago but sadly we lost him to Parkinsons Disease before we could see it through. We bought the tractor 12 years ago and worked together to restore it.”
The 76 year old kerosene fuelled Fordson ran faultlessly through a night of wind and squally rain leading into the final daylight hours when Mr McNicoll donned period clothes including a heavy busman’s jacket of the type much favoured by tractor ploughmen in the days before tractor cabs.
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