The 2011 Great West Truck Show and Custom Rigs Pride and Polish Truck Beauty Competition, Las Vegas, Nevada
Diesel-Fueled Brawn and Beauty Take Over Sin City's Convention Center
For the third year in a row, we headed north up the 15 freeway for a one-day road trip to check out the latest gadgets, gizmos, and custom trends in the world of rigs. We left the gloom of not-so-sunny California to spend the day in the city of sin and check out this year's Great West Truck Show and Custom Rigs Pride and Polish Truck Beauty Competition at the Las Vegas Convention center in Las Vegas. We rolled in style in our newest fleet vehicle, the 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo.
We don't normally cover trucks of this magnitude in the pages of our magazine, but for TruckTrend.com, we can explore every inch of the working truck world from half-ton pickups to heavy-duty rigs.
Described as the SEMA show for working trucks, it combines one part industry, one part school, and one part show and shine. For three days, drivers, owners, operators, and spectators stroll among the vender rows to learn about new products that could help their daily routines on- and off- the road. Recruiters from big trucking corporations like Swift Trucking and Wallmart were on the lookout for new drivers to fill their growing job requirements.
Above the convention room floor, the California Trucking Association hosted several seminars covering such trucking basics as California Air Resources Board's (CARB) pending diesel truck regulations, OSHA regulations, and mental heath and sensitivity training.
The Nevada Highway patrol brought out their custom 1951 Kenworth, Ol' Blue, sporting a clear hood with a seriously clean undercarriage.
The biggest crowd draw gathered around a tractor-trailer limousine called the Midnight Rider. The 70-foot-long trailer features three separate lounges, a full bar, a five-man staff, and a 40-passengercapacity. It's pulled by a 379 Low Profile Extended Hood Peterbilt. The interior is decorated as an 1800's Pullman car with custom brass rails, mirrored wood, and an on-board restroom containing a hammered brass sink and brass fixtures. The trailer features modern conveniences such as satellite TV, audio and video 7.1 surround sound, custom air ride suspension, and climate control. This luxury eighteen-wheeler is available for rent for those who want to travel or party in style. (www.themidnightrider.com)
The 2011 Pride & Polish show season makes it second stop of the year to coincide with the Great West Truck Show. Sponsored by Overdrive and Custom Rigs magazines, these Custom Rigs Pride and Polish Truck Beauty Competition trucks steal the show. From marble floors to custom-painted engine bays, the truck owners spare no expense to turn their work trucks into rolling mansions of the road. We spotted a few faces from past shows along with some new ones.
Dalton Trucking Inc. of Fontana, California, had several fleet vehicles on display decked out in two-tone green colors that included their 1950s Chevy pickup, 1955 Kenworth, and a 1961 white Mustang.
Kenny and Tuffy Yeary's 2010 Kenworth W900L is No. 1 of a limited Series of custom trucks. Named the Untouchable, it features 8-inch Dynaflex Monster Stacks, Accuride Wheels/Hub Covers, Valley Chrome plated bumpers, Gorilla shifter, custom painted floorboards that match the exterior paint, and much more. This truck took home second place for Working Bobtail - Company Truck, and third place in Interior - OEM Sleeper, third place in Custom Paint - Bobtail.
This "Texas Style" 1978 Kenworth W900A long Hood has over two million miles clocked on its odometer. The rig features a custom two-tone paint job, Hogebuilt fenders, and an old Western themed interior fit for any cowboy on the road. This truck took home the over-all win Antique Bobtail.
Back again this year and from D.R. DeSantis Trucking out of Apache Junction, Arizona, this 1985 Peterbilt 359 EXHD has had only one owner, Dean and Theresa DeSantis. It's powered by a 3406 CAT engine with a wheelbase of 285 feet and a frame length of 359 feet. It won second place Custom Paint - Bobtail and third place Working Bobtail.
Another familiar face--er, grille, this 1992 Peterbilt 379 Long Hood is built by Sandvik Trucking. It features a 460 Cummings engine, 15-speed transmission, and a 300-inch wheelbase. The exterior is decked out in a custom tribe graphic that carries into the engine's bay and the interior features marble floors throughout the cab. It took the top win for Best Interior - Limited Mileage.
Ben and Linda Campbell of Ignacio, Colorado, built this 2002 Sterling A9500 Custom, named El Capitan. Its cab features Air Ride Cab and Seats, a 40-band CB with weather channel and loudspeaker, Magellan GPS, Heater Moto-Mirrors, AM/FM tape deck, six speakers, and 7-inch stacks. The sleeper sits on Air Ride and features a double bunk, refrigerator, TV, Porta-Potty, and other on-the-road amenities. Custom fenders add flair. This truck took third place in Limited Mileage Combo.
This burnt orange 1991 MACK Superliner/2006 Great Dane Reefer, named Thumper, is powered by an E9 V8 MACK motor with over 700 horsepower. It carries the Bulldog trucking logo throughout the rig with custom paw-print door panels and custom leather hitch cover. It also took Best of Show Working Combo, first place for Working Combo - 2000 & Older, first place Interior - Aftermarket Sleeper, second place Engine - Working Truck.
Taking Best of Show Limited Mileage Combo and Best Paint - Limited Mileage Combo at this years show is John Silva's 2000 Red Peterbilt 379/1975 utility double flatbed. We especially love the chrome seat brackets and custom-cut trailer foot stands.
This year's Best of Show Working Bobtail went to Armando Burguan/Yamko Truck Lines out of Long Beach, California, with this 2009 black cherry Peterbilt 389. He also took home first place for Custom Paint - Bobtail, third place Engine - Working Truck, first place Interior - Cab Only, and second place Working Bobtail category.
I first saw this truck two years ago at the GWTS, and I've seen it once heading south on the 15 in California. The 1998 Peterbilt 475/2000 Wildside Transporter truck features an amazing tribal-flamed paint theme inside and out. And nothing says "this is my truck" like having yourself painted on the rear of the sleeper with a crowbar in your hand. Custom carved wooden panels also feature the tribal designs. Even the trailer bed is inlaid with wood. Always a winner at every show it attends, this year, it went home with Best Engine - Limited Mileage and second place Limited Mileage Combo titles to add to its belt.
This 1955 Freighliner WF-64 is a great-looking classic work truck.
For a complete list of winners from this show, go to http://www.customrigsmag.com/great-west-pride-polish-winners/
To check out the when and where for the next Pride & Polish show, visit www.prideandpolish.com or www.greatwesttruckshow.com for next year's show.