Well, another Top Truck Challenge has come and gone . . .
Well, another Top Truck Challenge has come and gone, and once again, we’ve got a year’s worth of fond memories of exciting competition with a terrific group of guys and their families from all across the US (and Canada too). This was the Sweet 16th running of TTC, and we’re still fine-tuning the event as we go. A few things we learned this year:
The Mini Rubicon was, well, a little too hard this time. Our sadistic judges, seeing the extreme trailworthiness of this year’s competitors, stacked boulders eight feet high in places, then used an excavator to clear out some 8-foot-deep holes in the middle of the course. The first few guys really struggled to make it halfway through, though the course got easier as the day progressed and competitors “graded” the trail for the guys who went last. One thing we’d never seen before: A rig being literally “airlifted” out of the rock pit, all four wheels high above ground, strapped to an excavator.
The Tank Trap was a little “easier” this year than in previous years---due to existing soil conditions at Hollister, we weren’t able to dump quite as much water into it as we’ve done before. Six of the nine competitors made it through within the 30-minute time limit---by contrast, as a rule maybe one or two guys ever make it. Which was fine with us since, frankly, it’s a lot more fun watching everyone get a legitimate chance to complete the course than it is to watch a bunch of boring three-hour extractions in the canyon.
We might just reconsider how we run our Tow Test. In previous years, we hooked up the competitors to a 20-ton water truck. This year, we threw the competitors a curveball and asked ‘em to tow a 30-ton cement mixer. None of the competitors completed the course.
Because of what happened at the end of TTC this year . . . well, we promise to have a tie-breaker system in place for Top Truck 2009. Like I said, no matter how long we run this event, we’re still learning as we go along. Thanks again to all who attended and helped make Top Truck 2008 the best one yet.