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Tractor pulling team’s partnership with oil firm a match made in heaven

Pairing the world’s most powerful motorsport with one of UK’s leading independent lubricants blenders is a match made in heaven.


That’s exactly what has happened with the Bear Essentials team, which competes in the high horsepower motorsport of tractor pulling.


The team, based near Shrewsbury, has called on the expertise of Morris Lubricants, which has been oiling the wheels of British industry for nearly 150 years, to keep their 2,000hp tractor, Ice Bear, running smoothly in competitions across the UK and Europe for several years.


Ice Bear was totally rebuilt last season, returning to its original colour scheme from when it was first built in 1996.  Based on a production 160hp Valtra tractor, with wheel speeds of up to 90kmh, Ice Bear was unbeaten in UK competition last season and finished fourth in the European Championship.


A multiple British champion and top 10 European contender, Ice Bear competes in the Prostock category for production based tractors running on diesel fuel with a single turbocharger.


The goal of tractor pulling is simple. Take one skilfully modified tractor and try to drag an increasingly heavy sledge as far as possible. In the Prostock category, a weight of up to 60 tonnes is hauled down a 100m track in about 10 seconds! 


It’s a challenge that the Bear Essentials team takes very seriously, covering almost 20,000km a year to compete in both the British Championships and the Eurocup Series throughout Europe, where tractor pulling is a major spectator sport.


To get over the line, every inch of the tractor must perform to its maximum, which is where Morris Lubricants comes in. The family-owned, Shrewsbury-based company supplies the oils and lubricants to keep the cogs turning.


“The link-up with Morris Lubricants is key to the team,” said Bear Essentials team manager Andy Miller. “The main product that we use is the Versimax HD3 20W-50 diesel engine oil. No-one else in the top level of the Prostock class in tractor pulling uses Morris Lubricants’ oils, so we carried out tests to compare it with other racing oils made by some of the so-called bigger names in the business.


“What we found was that the Morris product was just as good as what the competitors were offering. Coupled with the fact that we use production bearings and crankshafts as well as standard clearances, we think it does a really good job.


“Morris Lubricants has helped us grow and improve as a team to compete at the very top level of the Prostock class in both UK and European competition.”


To say thank you for its loyal support, the Bear Essentials team paid a visit to Morris Lubricants’ headquarters to introduce staff to Ice Bear and its breath-taking power.


Andrew Goddard. Morris Lubricants’ managing director, said: “It’s incredible to see the sheer power of the tractor, a real achievement of human endeavour. This is another example of how well our products perform in the agricultural market, one of our key sectors, especially when they are put to the ultimate test like this.


“We’re delighted that our products and support are helping a team make its mark at the highest level of European competition and wish Ice Bear every success this year.”


The team is now carrying out winter maintenance to prepare for a return to the track in April for the 2017 season, aiming to secure the British Championship once again!  Follow the team’s fortunes on Facebook at BearEssentialsTeam.


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