Norfolk (England) farming brothers and contractors Steven and Kevin Clarke share with us their fascination for harvesting in North America and in particular for custom cutter Dale Starks. Dale was the contractor who starred with his team of MF 760 combines in the 1976 BBC film Yellow Trail from Texas.
After seeing the Clarkes at work on their own East Anglian farm with big MF equipment we go on a road tour through the American cornbelt, as recorded by them in 2007. They introduce us to farmers and contractors and show classic and modern combines at work, including a superb MF 750, and the delivery of grain to the stores at the start of a wet season with the promise of violent storms.
In Oklahoma, when they drive into the Starks’ yard they find out the back the very truck that featured in Yellow Trail. Made welcome by Dale’s son, Larry, they join in the harvest with grandson Garritt pulling the chaser bin.
Further south they finally catch up with 83-year-old Dale himself who records his thoughts about the past. ‘If I was a young man,’ he says, ‘I’d do the same all over again.’ The interview has great poignancy because Dale died a few months later,