Mower racing turns truck driver into weekend warrior

Ever since watching his first lawn mower race in Agassiz, B.C., Andy McMahon says he has become hooked on the sport.

Most days Andy McMahon is a truck driver who hauls milk products for Dairyland.

But, a few weekends a year, that identity changes. Crowds cheer for him, competitors try to beat him and some little ones even look up to him.

McMahon is a lawn mower racer.

He, along with several others, competed in the lawn mower racing event at the 53rd annual Rutland May Days.

McMahon, who lives in Agassiz, B.C., said that the sport first caught his interest when he watched an event in his hometown.

“I watched them race in Agassiz and I thought it’d be cool to get into,” said McMahon.

“I found a mower that cost next to nothing. . .I took it apart, took the cutter head off, changed the pulleys and made it go fast.”

The truck driver said that, despite not playing any other sports, he’s hooked on lawn mower racing.

“If I can get the time off, I come and race.”

According to McMahon, usually 15 to 20 riders show up at events where races are divided into two classes: Stock mowers and modified mowers. They race on an oval track, with similar rules to stock car racing.

Lawn mower racers are in it for the fun, said McMahon. Prizes for winning races usually consist of nothing more than ribbons or trophies.

He said that he is confident that popularity will increase as the sport gets more exposure.

“I think the more people find out about it, the more people will want to get into it. I don’t think it’s advertised enough.”

In his first race of the weekend, McMahon turned in a solid performance and finished first. The next two races saw him finish middle of the pack.

After his third race he looked disappointed.

“I should’ve had that one. You can’t make many mistakes in these races, once you get behind the other guys it’s hard to catch up.”

The disappointment doesn’t linger long, within minutes he’s off his mower, chatting with his competitors about the race.

After the weekend concludes, McMahon will head back to Agassiz.

But once he goes back to work and is sitting in his truck, it likely won’t be long before he’s daydreaming about his next lawn mower race.

wpaterson@kelownacapnews.com

Just Posted

Wildfire near Peachland shows no growth overnight

Fire chief Dennis Craig said wind was blowing the fire away from homes

Okanagan Mountain Park fire shows no growth overnight

The wildfire, also called Goode’s Creek wildfire, continues to burn near Kelowna

Update: Wildfire near West Kelowna mapped at 10 hectares

The wildfire near Glenrosa is considered out of control

Okanagan Wildfires: The latest on wildfires and evacuations

A Saturday morning look at the major wildfires impact the Okanagan and Similkameen.

UPDATED: Mount Eneas fire grows to 1,374 hectares

Regional District Okanagan-Similkameen issues evac alerts for properties in Area F.

BC Wildfire update on Okanagan blazes

Watch the media briefing on the current fire situation in the Okanagan.

From hot dog to not dog: stuffed toy prompts car break in

B.C. couple said dog toy had been in the backseat for 18 years without problems

Wildfire crews working to strengthen line around fire near Summerland

The Mount Conkle wildfire is 90 per cent guarded

Open water swimming from B.C. to Washington in 24 hours

The swim will take a full day, meaning Susan Simmons will be swimming in the black of night

Cigarette packs with graphic images, blunt warnings are effective: focus groups

Warnings considered effective flag ailments smoking can cause, like colorectal and stomach cancers

Canada’s title hopes quashed at Rugby Sevens World Cup in San Francisco

On the men’s side, Canada was eliminated in the round of 16 as they were shut out by Argentina 28-0

‘We are doing the right thing:’ Protesters dig in at anti-pipeline camp

B.C. Supreme Court ruled in March that both the camp and a nearby watch house could remain in place

Astronaut drops in on Kraftwerk gig, plays duet from space

Alexander Gerst becomes an astronaut musician with live performance from International Space Station

Wildfires near Vernon extinguished

BX, Dee Lake and Irish Creek fires all out

Most Read