Harrisburg – Small, but mighty, miniature horses proved they had what it took to win their divisions today at the 2017 Pennsylvania Farm Show.
The competition was split into three divisions determined by the height of the horses at the shoulder: 34 in., 36 in., and 38 in.
Similar to pony pulling and draft horse pulling, two horses are hooked to a sled, and attempt to pull the sled a distance of 10 feet. Each team has three attempts to pull the sled 10 feet. If they do not make it a full 10 feet, known as a “full pull” in this event, their longest distance determines their placement.
In the first round, the sled weighed 820 pounds and cinder blocks were added each round in 320 pound increments.
The winner of the 34 in. division was Nick Irwin of Home, Indiana Co. His team made a final pull of 2’11” at a sled weight of 2,100 lbs.
Amanda Alpaugh of Allentown, Lehigh Co., won the 36 in. division after her team made a “full pull” of ten feet at a sled weight 2,100 lbs.
The final division, 38 in., was won by Buck Troup, New Bethlehem, Armstrong Co.
A Teamster Award was also given out in each division to a driver of a team. The winner was chosen by a panel of judges based on the driver’s exceptional skill in driving their horses, their sportsmanship, and how well the team of horses listened to the driver. The judges of this year’s contest were Dean Jenny, Rochester, Beaver Co.; Gary Livengood, Rockwood, Somerset Co.; and Butch Miner, Fort Plain, N.Y.
Nick Irwin of Home, Indiana Co., won the Teamster Award in the 34 in. division. Amanda Alpaugh, Allentown, Lehigh Co., took home the title in the 36 in. division. Dale Long, Summerhill, Cambria Co. received the award in the 38 in. division.
Results from the Mini Horse Pulling Contest:
34 In. Division:
1st – Nick Irwin, Home, Indiana Co.
2nd – Matt Ferringer, Creekside, Indiana Co.
3rd – Daniel Alpaugh, Turbotville, Montour Co.
4th – David Alpaugh, Turbotville, Montour Co.
5th – Bill Smith, Shunk, Sullivan Co.
6th– McKayla Shaue, Greencastle, Franklin Co.
7th – Danna Howell, Newville, Cumberland Co., driven by Izabella Howell (age 9)
8th – Danielle Eckenrode, Newville, Cumberland Co., driven by Ethan Eckenrode ( age7)
Teamster Award: Nick Irwin, Home, Indiana Co.
36 In. Division:
1st – Amanda Alpaugh, Allentown, Lehigh Co.
2nd – Corey Wagner, Pillow Hill, Franklin Co.
3rd – Brandon Ferringer, Clarion Center, Indiana Co.
4th – Thomas Goodwin, Mount Bethel, Northampton Co.
5th – Chuck Nutwell, Needmore, Fulton Co.
Teamster Award: Amanda Alpaugh, Allentown, Lehigh Co.
38 In. Division:
1st – Buck Troup, New Bethlehem, Armstrong Co.
2nd – Sandy Troup, New Bethlehem, Armstrong Co.
3rd – Dale Long, Summerhill, Cambria Co.
4th – Bill Smith, Shunk, Sullivan Co.
5th – Russ Ferringer and Ada George, Indiana, Indiana Co.
Teamster Award: Dale Long, Summerhill, Cambria Co.
The Pennsylvania Farm Show is the nation’s largest indoor agricultural event, featuring 6,000 animals, 10,000 competitive exhibits, and 300 commercial exhibitors. The show runs January 7-13 from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. and January 14 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free and parking is $15 in Farm Show lots. The Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex and Expo Center is easily accessible from nearby Interstate 81.