By Suzanne Stempinski
n a town where glitz, glamour and bling are tools of the trade, the lights shine brightly and all eyes turn as the hotties show their stuff. Trucks, that is. Hot trucks, well-dressed trucks, all decked out in their shiny finery at the Great West Truck Show in Las Vegas.
It’s mid-season in the truck show world, and on any given weekend you could find a truck show or two somewhere from coast to coast. Every venue has a different style, a different purpose. Some are just about hanging out and sharing stories. Others focus on raising money for special causes. From parking lots to pastures, from truck stops to exhibit halls, when you’ve got a good-looking truck, every day is a truck show.
Some shows are about looking good from a distance – the wash it, wipe it, park it kind of shows. But the best-looking trucks are always the trucks where pride in your ride starts at the top and works its way into every nook and cranny, from fender to fifth wheel, stacks to stainless. Pride and Polish shows are about attention to detail. It begins with clean – squeaky clean – and encompasses an attention to detail that has become as exacting as custom car shows.
Best of Show status is tough to achieve and even tougher to repeat. Just ask OOIDA Member Michael Most of Phoenix, AZ. He’s been there and done that – several times. And every win is special.
His electrifying yellow 1998 Freightliner Classic is impossible to miss going down the road or on the floor. Detailed and muraled everywhere, the over-the-top “Legends and Heroes” is sprinkled with M&M’s (his initials), has a spectacular tribute mural to the heroes of Sept. 11 across the back of his sleeper, and has a ghostly Dale Earnhardt covering his hood.
More of those M&M’s dance around his engine fan blades, on his air cleaner tubes, and in and out of the inside. A fiercely friendly competitor, Most likes to win but he’s more than willing to lend a helping hand to someone who needs it. This time the judges sent him home with five trophies, including Best of Show Working Bobtail.
So how do you top that?
“I found out the judges who looked at my motor noticed the hose clamps weren’t lined up in the same direction,” Most said. “That’s what made the difference between first and second place in Engine class. I’ll get it right next time.”
In the meantime, he’s back to hauling tropical fish.
Best of Show Working Combo went to John Silva of Chowchilla, CA. He’s also the competitor who took first place in the Engine class, along with a couple of other first-place trophies on his way to his Best of Show win. His 2000 red Peterbilt 379 pulling a pair of Utility flatbed trailers hauls hay.
Limited Mileage Bobtail Best of Show honors went to Boots Chivington for his boot scootin’ black and orange 2000 Kenworth W900L. From the boot-cut grill screen to boot-shaped brackets on the frame, this truck makes you want to do much more than kick the tires.
For OOIDA Members Bob and Shelley Brinker, a trip to Las Vegas with daughter Charlotte gave them an opportunity to show their truck, collect a few more trophies – for interior, engine and paint to name a few – and to paint the town. Their extraordinary truck is customized from stem to stern, inspired by the “Pirates of the Caribbean” movies and in tribute to their daughter Aimee. No pirate ever found a better deck to call home.
These hard-working show trucks draw a crowd wherever they go. In this case, even as they paraded out of the convention center in preparation for their next loads, plenty of fans with cameras at the ready lined up to wish them safe journeys. LL