As the world waits in anticipation for the imminent departure of the Antarctica2 expedition to drive a Massey Ferguson tractor to the South Pole, Lead Driver Manon Ossevoort is looking forward to the trip.
“Driving the tractor through the endless white vastness of Antarctica is going to be so surreal,” she says.
“When I first learnt to drive a tractor, I was immediately taken with the symbols of the tortoise and the hare which are used as icons on the dashboard to denote low and high gear ranges. That fitted perfectly with my story concept of fulfilling a dream slowly but surely.”
“The MF 5610 is a great machine – small, compact, manoeuvrable and lightweight. It’s been really well prepared by the Massey Ferguson engineers and the other partners supporting Antarctica2. I hope it’s going to keep me nice and warm!”
“We’ve done lots of tests both in the lab and in the field– all with the very best people. It’s been amazing to see the tractor perform, especially during our expedition trial in Iceland.”
“When I found out about the first mechanised trek to the South Pole achieved by Sir Edmund Hillary and his Ferguson TE20 in 1958, the story really inspired me to keep believing in the possibilities of my endeavour. So with all that heritage, I always knew it would be really appropriate for me to be driving a modern-day Massey Ferguson tractor. I feel privileged to be doing so.”
“The whole project is about trust and is a big leap of faith for all parties. But we all took that leap, and now we are about to set off. I will give my all to continue this celebration and share our tales of adventure as we cross the ice.”
Depending on weather conditions, Antarctica2 is scheduled to leave some time this weekend (22/23 November).
With the arrival of Expedition Ambassador and Lead Driver, Manon Ossevoort, the whole Antarctica2 team is now at Novo Runway, making final preparations before embarking on their ambitious quest to drive a Massey Ferguson MF 5610 on a 5,000km journey to the South Pole and back.
Despite temperatures falling to minus 40°C during a recent storm, in which 50mph winds produced a wind chill down to minus 50°C, the team is confident the expedition will set out for the Pole this weekend as planned. Currently, they are acclimatising to the harsh conditions, packing their supplies and making the final equipment checks.
Along with Manon, the team includes polar explorers Matty McNair (Expedition Lead Guide) and her daughter Sarah McNair-Landry (Expedition Guide and Audio-Visual Support), Nicolas Bachelet (Lead Mechanic) and Simon Foster (Creative Director and Audio-Visual Lead). Expedition specialists, Arctic Trucks will provide guidance and safety support.
The Massey Ferguson tractor set to spearhead an expedition to the South Pole has touched down in the Antarctic.
The ambitious Antarctica2 mission to reach the Pole by tractor is scheduled to depart on its 5000 km journey across the ice this weekend (22/23 November) depending on weather conditions.
Transported in a IL76 heavy-cargo aircraft, the tractor landed at Novo Runway from Cape Town where it has been undergoing some final preparations for its polar adventure.
“It’s wonderful to see the first pictures of our MF 5610 tractor in Antarctica which will be its place of work for the next few weeks,” says Campbell Scott, Massey Ferguson, Director Sales Engineering and Brand Development. “The arrival of the MF 5610 at this time is highly appropriate as it coincides with the official birth of the Massey Ferguson brand name on 19th November 1957.
“We are really looking forward to the start of the mission and following the progress of the Antarctica2 expedition team as it makes its way to the Geographical South Pole. “
Together with Massey Ferguson which is supplying the tractor, Antarctica2 has enlisted the help of leading industry partners including Trelleborg, Castrol, AGCO Finance, AGCO Parts, Fuse Technologies and Mechatrac.
You can follow the team’s challenge every day at www.AntarcticaTwo.com and #BelieveInIt
The multi-national team set to journey to the South Pole by tractor in the Antarctica2 expedition brings a vast range of experience and expertise to this exciting polar challenge.
The expedition was three years in the planning during which time, team members undertook training in Northern Canada and Iceland to prepare them for the practical, physical and mental challenges of the journey.
Expedition Ambassador and Lead Driver of the specially-prepared MF 5610 tractor is Manon Ossevoort, aka ‘Tractor Girl’. Manon is joined by polar explorers Matty McNair (Expedition Lead Guide ) and Sarah McNair-Landry (Expedition Guide and Audio-Visual Support), Nicolas Bachelet (Lead Mechanic) and Simon Foster (Creative Director and Audio-Visual Lead). Expedition specialists, Arnór Ingólfsson (Expedition Leader and Arctic Truck Driver 1) and Jóhannes Guðmundsson (Arctic Truck Driver 2) will provide guidance and safety support.
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Massey Ferguson is strengthening its position in the Compact tractor sector with the launch of two new models at the EIMA Show, Bologna. The 46hp, MF 1747 and 38hp, MF 1740 are available with either a hydrostatic transmission with cab, or in platform versions with a manual transmission.
MF 1747 HC and 1740 HC models offer a fully hydrostatic transmission and are fitted with a full safety cab as standard. The three-range transmission is controlled electrically and operated by a floor pedal, along with a left-hand shuttle lever, providing fingertip direction changes. A cruise control button allows operators to set the forward speed, which is then maintained automatically.
The MF 1747 A and 1740 A models have a mechanical gearbox and come equipped with a ROPS platform as standard. The gearbox provides 12 forward and 12 reverse speeds, with Synchro reverse shuttle lever.
These versatile tractors meet the exacting demands of agricultural, amenity and horticultural users, offering the power and transmission choice to excel in a wide range of work with the hydraulic flow and control to handle modern implements with ease.