Feature Story                                                                                                               Sunday April 22, 2012


Princes of the Plow

The 90th Chilliwack Plowing Match goes off without a hitch

Craig Hill/Voice photos


Plowmen and their teams compete at the annual Plowing Match April 14.


he 90th annual Chilliwack Plowing Match took place last weekend which brought in contestants from across BC and Washington. Rain fell overnight leaving just enough moisture to allow for easier plowing.


The Match held at 9835 McLeod Rd. is a family event featuring teams of draft horses, antique tractors and modern competition plows. There is also a class pitting local mayors and politicians against each other for cash prizes.


Once the plowmen and their teams start to dig in, they have one-and-a-half hours to finish their plots, and points are assessed for things like straightness of rows, how the rows are furrowed in relation to the crown. Judging also looks at the covering weeds, firmness and packing and just the general appearance of the plowed plots.

Lillooet rancher and welder millwright Phil Rogers and his wife Mandy, were enjoying a "working fun day" and took a moment to speak with the Voice prior to the Match.

It's tough, grueling work and sometimes accidents happen. Such was the case for Rogers one day when he was using a stone bolt plow and a borrowed Belgian.

"She got to rearing in harness, so, I'm holding her and trying to keep her calm and she lifted me right off the ground and they both took off at the same time and I'm holding on." he said. "I hadn't let go, and I got wedged between the runners on the stone bolt"

Rogers was dragged for quite some distance before his wife Mandy got the horses under control.

"Somehow she managed to lift the sled off me, but they took off again and the sled ran across my legs," said Rogers.

Phil Rogers and his wife Mandy prepare for the Match on Saturday.

He wasn't terribly injured, however he caught his face on a bolt on the sled. Luckily, the week before he cut the bolt down or he could have been seriously hurt.

"I was more mad than anything," he said smiling. "But once a horse has a wreck, you have to get them back calmed down within 20 minutes, that runs deep."

See more photos below.

The 2012 winners are:


Horse Sulky Plow

1st Joyce Marchand - Salmon Arm


Horse Walking Plow

1st Dennis Ryan - Westwold

2nd Dugan Montjoy - Lilloet

3rd George Bowen - Custer Washington


Chilliwack Open Tractor Class

1st Joe Muik - Salmon Arm

2nd Al Pearson - Kelowna


Chilliwack Antique Tractor Class

1st Dave Barker -Cawston

2nd Hunter Ramey - Agassiz


Politicians Class

1st Bruce Banman - Abbotsford

2nd John Les - Chilliwack

3rd Chuck Stam - Chilliwack

4th Duane Post - Agassiz

4th Laurie Throness - Chilliwack


BC Junior Championship

1st Andrew Graham - Abbotsford


BC Reversible Championship

1st Francis Sache - Rosedale

2nd Bill Higginson - Sardis


BC Senior Conventional Championship

1st Gene Sache - Rosedale

2nd Jim Mar - Saanichton

3rd Shane Thompson - Chilliwack




Copyright (c) 2012 The Valley Voice