It is no coincidence that Oklahoma is the source of the fastest running greyhounds in the United States and that Oklahoma also spawns the most tornados in the United States. In fact, the current world record time for the fastest greyhound race is held by an Oklahoma greyhound.
About three years ago when the current world record holder was a pup and in training, we also had a fast pup that was in training. We arranged for a "match" race between two of our fastest greyhounds and two of another farmer's greyhounds (that included the future world record holder). Well now, a match race between greyhound farmers is for a lot more than money can bring. A match race between greyhound farmers is for the two most important things in the world - pride and bragging rights.
The Saturday arrived for the match race. The weather was bad. It was dark, cloudy, and the wind was blowing, sometimes gusting above 50 MPH. We put our two greyhounds in the starting box. The other farmer put his two greyhounds in the starting box. The squawker lure came slowly around the track and picked up speed. Just as the lure passed the starting box, a strong gust of wind started blowing from behind the starting box. The gate went up and the dogs broke from the starting box with a tremendous burst of speed, the race was on. The greyhounds were actually running faster than the wind was blowing. All four greyhounds were dead even and flying down the frontstretch. The draft from the greyhounds sucked the wind right in behind them. Around the first turn they went and into the second turn in a circular motion. The wind and dust followed. Of course the training track is an oval. The four greyhounds continued their blistering pace up the backstretch and around the third and fourth turns. The wind and dust followed the oval pattern. Well, when the loop was completed, the front edge of the wind merged into the remaining wind pattern. The combined wind effect picked up momentum and continued around the oval track. The four greyhounds completed their race (it was a four way tie) and were quickly ushered off the track. However the oval wind pattern continued.
The oval wind pattern continued to pick up speed and momentum. Men, women, children, and dogs ran for cover. Cars and trucks overturned. Trees were uprooted. Electric poles popped out of the ground. Dust turned daylight into darkness. Barns and houses exploded. Entire farm ponds were sucked dry. It was terrible. The last we heard, this Oklahoma twister (started from an Oklahoma greyhound race) was somewhere over Kansas and was officially recorded with winds in excess of 150 MPH.
A true and factual account :)
"On the Farm" By Shawnie and Sam Burdette, photo rendering by Dan Schmidt