EUFAULA FFA WINS TRACTOR RESTORATION CONTEST
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- More than six decades after it was first built, a 1946 Case A model tractor rolled to victory again Friday morning, thanks to a monumental restoration effort by the Eufaula FFA chapter.
The Eufaula FFA took the $2,500 grand prize in the 13th annual Chevron Delo Tractor Restoration Competition, defeating nine other teams from across the United States at the National FFA Organization's 81st annual convention in Indianapolis.
The Eufaula team, led by Buster Padgett, included: Cody Medley, Steven Filgo, Jake Padgett, Katie Walden, Justin Gibson, Andrea Pittman, Jackson Harris, Jim Johnson and Zack Padgett.
The Cotton Center (Texas) FFA was first runner-up with its 1961 John Deere 3010, and the Northwood FFA of Nappanee, Ind., was second runner-up with its 1967 John Deere 3020 Gas.
Matthew Dehlinger of the Olney (Ill.,) FFA won the individual competition's $2,500 grand prize with his 1936 John Deere A. Isley Elmore of the Elmore (Texas) FFA was first runner-up in the individual contest with his 1950 Farmall H. Jordan Raska of the Brazos FFA in Wallis, Texas was second runner-up with a 1959 John Deere 830.
First runners-up received $1,500, while second runners-up took home $1,000.
All entrants to the Chevron Delo Tractor Restoration Competition are required to submit a workbook detailing the entire tractor restoration process, from mechanical overhauls of the engine, transmission and auxiliary and ancillary systems, to the external appearance of the tractors.
This year's entries were narrowed down to eight finalists in the individual competition and 10 finalists in the chapter competition. These finalists presented their projects to a panel of five professional tractor restorers. Projects were graded on restoration process, results and documentation, as well as oral presentation and safety precautions.
Since 1995, the Chevron Delo Tractor Restoration Competition has rewarded the determination, mechanical skills and business savvy of high school aged FFA members from around the country. Through the restoration of an antique tractor, participants develop skills applicable to the modern business world. The skills needed for success in the program -- equipment maintenance, team work, project management, budgeting, planning and marketing -- help develop the participants into future leaders in the agriculture community.
"At Chevron, we have been talking a lot about 'human energy,' and the potential of our youth is a great example of this concept," said Julian Cran, marketing manager, Chevron Global Lubricants. "What we love about the Delo Tractor Restoration Competition is its ability to inspire kids to do things they may never have done, or even thought possible. The program also encourages participants to interact with their teachers, advisors, family, friends and community. Being involved with a program that inspires kids to ask questions, interact, learn, and in the end accomplish the incredible, is something Chevron and its Delo brand are very proud of. Although we could only crown two winners, we salute all the competitors for their incredible work."