Taupo Bay Tractor Spectacular


In Taupo Bay, New Zealand the humble tractor has become a cult object, a conduit for creativity and a status object admired by mechanically inclined men in the way others might fuss over a restored Model T. Source: New Zealand Herald

Every year this Far North holiday spot celebrates its special love affair with the tractor by hosting a parade attracting more than 40 machines ranging from painstakingly restored classics to mobile rust heaps held together with wire.

The Taupo Bay Tractor Spectacular was founded in 2014 by Stephen Jones and Michael Redwood, Aucklanders who have been coming to the bay since the 1970s.

“We had the idea in our heads for a long time. We talked about it and talked about it, then one year we printed some posters and 40 tractors turned up,” Mr Jones said.

Prizes are awarded for best decorated, most pimped, best preened post 1970 tractor, and best team effort. The top trophy goes to the most loved tractor.

This summer’s spectacular was held on December 30, 2016. Contestants in the best decorated category included a Barbie tractor, a giant carrot, an All Black tribute and Thomas the Tank Engine.

This year’s winner of the most pimped category was Team Hooker while the best decorated title went to the hippy themed Aquarius.

The winner of the best pre 1970 category was Brendon Clifford of Auckland, who spent 11 months restoring his 1950 Farmall FC; Kerikeri man David Zammit’s British Leyland was named the best post 1970 tractor.

The best team was the Hooson family of Whangarei for their sunsmart themed float.

The top title, most loved tractor, went to Bob Mason’s Kubota and a float called The Taupo Bay Bikers Gang.