Draft Horse Pull

This may look strange to our eyes, but not that long ago, draft horses were a part of life, especially on the farm where multiple teams of horses did all the labor on the farm from planting to harvest. Back then, farmers would challenge one another to see who’s team could pull the most weight. Today horse pulling is an organized sport for horse athletes.

We attended a draft horse pull in Dover, Kansas a couple weeks ago, and even though it was a blazing hot day we had a great time watching these beautiful horses exhibit their amazing raw power.

Each team takes a turn at pulling a set weight of cinder blocks on a sled. The team must pull the sled 15 feet.  More weight is added with each team’s turn. Teams are eliminated if they are unable to pull the sled the required distance. The last team left is the winner. Rules and regulations are in place to ensure the safety of the horses.

And far from the horses being reluctant to pull tons of cinder blocks on a hot summer day, the teams got excited as they were led to the sled for their turn.

For some drivers it was all they could do to hold their teams back, and then they had a hard time getting them to stop once they had pulled the required 15 feet.

Have you ever attended a draft horse pull?



Cattle, corn, wheat, beans, mud, snow, ice, and drought. Plenty of fresh air and quiet. Our life is sometimes heartbreaking, sometimes joyous, but never boring.

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6 Responses

  1. Tina says:

    I love the horse on the left in the second photo. The muscles in the neck and shoulder are so defined you can just about hear them grunt and groan. Great pics, I want to go too!

  2. Glyndalyn says:

    Great photographs. Mule pulls in TN. A big one coming up around July 4.

  3. Louise S says:

    Never seen one. I’ll take your word for it that the horses enjoy the sport…………. :-/

    • Suzanne says:

      Well it was the darndest thing…they were excited…several of the teams started pulling before the starter said GO, and they they had to go back. You could see it in their faces…”oh boy we get to pull!” I was surprised.

  4. Carol says:

    I doubt the horses would do the task if they did not want to pull. Remember the saying…You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink!

  5. Kathy says:

    Last year I went to a Mule Days in Columbus, TN…they had mule pull competition…they were amazing!! I would love to see the draft horses pull.

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