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Washington County man battles with 'Addiction'

August 01, 2004|by JULIE E. GREENE

julieg@herald-mail.com

KEEDYSVILLE - Three big block Chevrolet engines sit atop Jody Hammond's modified tractor and a fourth sits behind his seat.

Combined, they generate an estimated 2,900 horsepower and total more than 1,762 cubic inches though, ever the competitor, Hammond won't say how much more.

The black and yellow dragster-style tractor recently had its payloader rear end and planetaries replaced with those of a truck tractor.

Altogether, the parts amount to Addiction.

"That's what it is," said Hammond, 35, a welder who lives on Porterstown Road south of Keedysville.

"If you'd asked me 10 years ago if I'd ever own one, I'd have said you're crazy," Hammond said. "The first time you get on one, it's addictive."

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The thrill, that is.

Hammond races Addiction on the American Tractor Pullers Association circuit, pulling a large sled down a long track to see who can pull the heavy weight the farthest.

The tractor pulls this week at the Washington County Ag Expo are part of the Interstate Truck and Tractor Pullers circuit. Hammond said he will participate in the Super Open Class on Thursday night to support his local fair, not for points.

Hammond said he was doing well in the points race, running third, until he missed a recent event.

When asked to describe his favorite pull, Hammond said, "when you win, of course."

"It's more of the challenge of getting everything to run good," which he does with the help of sponsors who provide money and parts, Hammond said.

Like many tractor pull drivers, Hammond likes tinkering with the engine as much as driving in the pulls.

"You can't have one without the other," Hammond said.

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