Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Duncan Motorsports Mid-Season Report

Looking back at the 2013 season at the half way point, is a lot more enjoyable following a win.  The Texas T-Rex Team has certainly had a great 2013, at least up until this mid season point.  I believe much of the success the team has had thus far, can be attributed to the efforts of preparation during the off season.
Lane Duncan goes to work, after unloading from Rockdale, preparing for 2013.

 Immediately following the 2012 season, we began researching, acquiring, and testing various drive belt and pulley combinations for the belt driven 'Texas T-Rex'.  We have narrowed down the best combination of belt and pulley ratio, to a few select pairings, at this point.  From a single setup with no backup in previous years, to multiple combinations with capable spares today, we have definitely improved our situation.  We have also learned a lot about belt materials, design, and construction.  Learning while at play certainly seems like a good thing, especially for young puller !

Measuring Douglas Wheels for wheel screws, prior to mounting Firestone tires.
The team also acquired and tested a couple of different pulling tires, which has resulted in a couple of different setups, as options available to us depending on track conditions.  We have a decent tire package for both hard and tacky tracks, as well as a tire package that seems decent for the looser tracks.  And at the very least, we have spares available to keep us in the competition should the need arise.  We certainly have not figured out the track reading, and would not claim to have figured out the best tire package, but I believe we have improved, and at least can continue to gain data and comparisons, to hopefully continue to improve.
Lane Duncan installs new wheel studs on his 'Texas T-Rex' pulling tractor.

A rule change in 2013, allowed for an increase in the tractor weight from 950 to 1000 pounds.  We were pleased with our progress at the old weight, and were reluctant to add the additional weight, but have gradually increased the weight and moved the balance around in subtle changes.  To date, we are still a little light, but have a pretty good feel for the weight location for what the 'Texas T-Rex' seems to like.  We are sneaking up on the combination, and hope to be able to adjust quickly at the track as needed.  In the past, we usually fell off on the second pulls, and did not seem to be able to make the correct adjustments.  This year, we have been able to make small adjustments, and improve on the second pull.  This ability is an accomplishment I am quite proud of....although, it may have just been luck !
Images by Sharon, captured Lane and his 'Texas T-Rex' in action at the Hunt County Fair.

Images by Sharon, captured Lane launching his 'Texas T-Rex', on the way to a win in Thornton.

I would like to thank all of those involved with our team, as well as everyone involved in the LSGTPA club. I think the season overall, is off to a great run for 2013.   We were excited to have Bailey Melvin and Morgan Dellow as part of the show at the first three events, performing our National Anthem during opening ceremonies, and look forward to working with these two young rising stars at future LSGTPA shows.  The LSGTPA club now enjoys great photography, with the work of Ashley Jesko and Sharon Bramlett.  We would like to acknowledge the Clara Foster Slough Museum in Enloe, for continued partnering to support the LSGTPA Youth Class.  Lane and I certainly can not field an entry alone, so we would like to express our greatest appreciation to Richard and Nancy Duncan, aka 'Nannie' and 'PawPaw'.  Our 'Uncle Larry' King, started this endeavor off, with presenting Lane with the 'Texas T-Rex' project, back in 2008, and we certainly appreciate the opportunity his donation has provided.  Too many people need to be thanked, to try and include everyone here.  We will save that for a year end wrap up feature !

We will continue on with this 2013 run, and hope to improve with each pull !  Most importantly, we will have fun as we learn, and will enjoy the experiences this effort presents.  Thank you again, to all of those that support us !

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Texas T-Rex Team Takes a Win in Thornton

Lane Duncan piloted his 'Texas T-Rex' tractor to two great hooks in Thornton, to take the win in the LSGTPA Youth Class on Saturday.  Lane was the recipient of the 'high card' which put his machine in the first slot to pull in his class.  With the Youth Class pullers the first class, Lane was the very first tractor out of the gate at the Thornton Rodeo Arena event.  After a malfunction with the sled on the first attempt, Lane had to remain calm and managed a great pull on the first official pass down the track.
Lane Duncan is first out of the gate at the Thornton Tractor Pull

Texas T-Rex Team discusses strategy at the LSGTPA Thornton Tractor Pull.

Lane returned for his second pass, and improved on the first performance to secure the victory.  Near record temperatures during the event, had the tractors and pullers alike feeling the heat, as the thermometer was well over the century mark and track temperatures soared over 120 degrees.  The Duncan Motorsports crew and 'Texas T-Rex' team were thrilled with the win, and hope to further improve on the performance.

Lane Duncan aboard his 'Texas T-Rex' tractor, prepares to pull in the Thornton Rodeo Arena.

Lane Duncan rides his 'Texas T-Rex' tractor to victory at the Thornton Rodeo Arena tractor pull.

Thanks to all of the sponsors of the event, including the Thornton Chamber of Commerce and Junior Chamber members, Thornton Rodeo Arena, and LSGTPA for organizing the event.

Lane Duncan scores the Thornton Tractor Pull Gold Medal.