UNION — There was no cutting-edge technology, pun intended, but good old-fashioned gasoline engines and human leg power brought to the course on Friday night, July 29 for the always fun, rurally-based lawn mower drag races.

The annual Thunder Valley Lawn Mower races returned to the Maine Wild Blueberry Festival and Union Fair with no manicured, landscaping tasks needed, only intense, heated competitions down the 150-foot horse harness race track.

Scene from the Thunder Valley Lawn Mower Drag Races on July 29 at the Union Fair. Photo by Holly Vanorse Spicer

In fact, while adults sat on traditional — or souped up — riding mowers, spinning tires and spitting dirt down the course (after popping small wheelies at the start), children also got to participate in the unique event by pushing mowers, using good old-fashioned, human-based horse power, down the track.

In all, just like with drivers of dragster vehicles, the competitors waited for the light tree to turn from red to yellow to green and either shifted their rides or legs/feet into gear to see if they could beat the person next to them.

Scene from the Thunder Valley Lawn Mower Drag Races on July 29 at the Union Fair. Photo by Holly Vanorse Spicer

According to the fair website, with machine names such as “Gray Ghost,” “Oh-Low,” “Quick Silver,” “The Crow,” “Mad-Jan,” Stars and Stripes” and “General Lee,” to name a few, for the third straight year, the Thunder Valley Lawn Mower Drag Races made their mark at the fair as drivers mounted their machines to see who was the fastest wire-to-wire — and cut above the rest — in competition that started in daylight and ended after dark under the track lights.

Drivers provided their own riding lawn mowers — which could be modified to class specifications — and participated in races down a 150-foot straight track in a double-elimination format.

As always, the event left smiles on the faces of the spectators — and, of course, the competitors.