Christmas has come early at Bundaberg’s Endeavour Foundation with a brand new tractor arriving.
It’s hoped it’ll help produce better crops and it’s come just in time for planting the famous Mother’s Day flowers.
The tractor is also opening up more training and career prospects for workers.
They are being trained using virtual reality before controlling the tractor.
William “Billy” Bastable has worked at Endeavour for six years and loves machines.
He is one of the first employees to be trained in how to drive the big and famously green machine, and he has already had a ride inside.
“The tractor will so be useful on the farm – if I don’t crash it into anything,” he says.
“It’s cool in the air-conditioning too and I got ACDC playing on the Bluetooth.”
The 90-horsepower model 6090M John Deere was purchased by Endeavour Foundation for $124,500 thanks to generous donations from Jim Livingstone Fabrications – the Livingstone family competes in the Great Endeavour Rally – and from the Simpson Foundation.
“We’re very grateful to these two families for a donation of this magnitude,” says site manager Robert Campbell.
“We’ve already started to use the tractor and it will be the mainstay of our Bundaberg farm for years to come.
“Being a four-wheel-drive this thing will go anywhere and do just about anything.
“I know our local team is looking at the variety of attachments available to speed up our processes and make the farm even better and more efficient.”
Mr Campbell says the tractor is ideal for training people supported by Endeavour Foundation at work.
“The tractor has 24 gears, but the controls are all electronic, making it much easier for people to learn on,” he says.
“It’s a two-seater cabin so it’s ideal for teaching in and the closed, air-conditioned cabin will be a hit in the Bundaberg summer.”