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2008 Top Truck Challenge - 50 Challengers

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Posted February 1, 2007

The '08 TTC Hopefuls

Well folks, it's time to cast your ballots. You get to choose who gets the nod to travel to Hollister, California, in June to compete in Top Truck Challenge '08. Yep, believe it; you have the power and the authority to decide which 10 of the following 50 Top Truck Challenge hopefuls get to compete in our weeklong mega-event.

Voting is easy. All you have to do is turn to page 50 and remove the Official Top Truck Challenge Ballot and then clearly write your favorite 10 rigs' corresponding entry numbers on the ballot and mail it to us at the supplied address. We'll tally the results and reveal the Top 10 in the November issue. That will be followed by detailed coverage of Top Truck Challenge '08 in the December issue.We only accept the actual official printed ballot found in this issue, so don't send us faxes or photocopies of the ballot because we'll just giggle and then ball `em up and throw `em at each other. Helpful hint: If you want to stuff the ballot box for your favorite rig or bestest buddy, you can feel free to do so. As a matter of fact, we encourage it because you'll have to buy multiple April issues to get the official ballot and that will keep the circulation department happy.

We know you're anxious to speak your mind by ballot, so we'll stop blabbing now so you can start voting.

1: Nazir Adam, Penn Laird, Virginia Tanner 4x4-built '06 Jeep CJ

Adam says he has 'wheeled his rig everywhere from Moab to Tellico to Rausch Creek in Pennsylvania. Now he wants to turn his rig loose at Top Truck with his friend Frank Ross behind the wheel. Sound like an interesting arrangement?

Engine: 350ci GM Ram Jet V-8
Transmission: TH350, Kevlar internals
Transfer case: Atlas four-speed
Axles, f/r: Dana 60/Dana 60
Traction aids, f/r: Detroit Locker/Detroit Locker
Ratio: 5.13:1
Suspension, f/r: Four-link, Fox nitrogen shocks/Four-link, Fox nitrogen shocks
Tires: 42-inch Super Swampers
Special features: Warn winch
Driver experience: 16 years

2: Hoby Hulbert, Sylmar, California '62 Willys wagon

This is Hulbert's first attempt to compete in Top Truck. With Rockwells and 49s, his rig seems to have a good foundation. If you vote him in, we wonder if he'll add a winch and replace the two-barrel carb with fuel injection before it's go-time.

Engine: 327ci Chevy V-8
Transmission: SM420
Transfer case: Divorced NP201
Axles, f/r: 2.5-ton Rockwell/2.5-ton Rockwell
Traction aids, f/r: Spool/Detroit Locker
Ratio: 6.72:1
Suspension, f/r: Leaf springs/Leaf springs
Tires: 49x21.0-16.5 Super Swamper IROKs
Special features: Hulbert says the body and frame are the only stock components.
Driver experience: 16 years

3: Joseph L. Cochran, Minneola, Florida '95 Jeep Wrangler

It looks as though Cochran has assembled a stout rig. Now he wants to prove it at Top Truck. Are you down with sending this Sunshine State 'wheeler to the Golden State?

Engine: 4.0L I-6
Transmission: NV3550
Transfer case: Dana 300
Axles, f/r: High-pinion Dana 60/14-bolt, CTM U-joints
Traction aids, f/r: Detroit Locker/Detroit Locker
Ratio: 5.13:1
Suspension, f/r: Four-link, 12-inch-travel Fox air shocks/Four-link, 12-inch-travel Fox air shocks
Tires: 39.5x15.0-17 Super Swamper TSLs
Special features: Front and rear Warn 9.5 XP winches, dual Optima batteries, PSC front and rear hydraulic steering, twin stick, RCI fuel cell, 17x8 KMC 36-bolt bead locks, Dedenbear knuckles, chromoly 35-spline axleshafts
Driver experience: 8 years

4: Rob Murphy, Millmont, Pennsylvania '04 Jeep Wrangler

An incredible build list makes this trail-ready Wrangler stand out from the crowd. But could this beautiful rig be humbled in the Tank Trap?

Engine: Supercharged 4.0L I-6, methanol-injected
Transmission: NV3550 with Centerforce Dual Friction clutch
Transfer case: Flipped Dana 300 with 4:1 and 2.72:1 Klune-V
Axles, f/r: Full-width high-pinion Dana 44/Full-width Ford 9-inch with full-float conversion
Traction aids, f/r: Detroit Locker/Spool
Ratio: 5.13:1
Suspension, f/r: Long-arm four-link, 14-inch-travel Fox coilovers/Long-arm four-link, 12-inch-travel Fox coilovers
Tires: 39.5x13.50-15 bias ply Super Swamper IROKs
Special features: 62mm throttle body, hydro-assist crossover steering, twin stick, pinion e-brake, on-board CO2 and nitrogen, rear backup camera, hand throttle, recessed exterior lights, rear steer, T-Max 10000 winch, scores of exterior mods
Driver experience: 14 years

5: Scott Krznar, West Middlesex, Pennsylvania '78 Ford F-250

Krznar's massive Ford has a lot of heavy-duty stuff bolted onto the F-600 frame, including a massive lift. Can this height be the key to climbing over the Frame Twister's logs, or could it be the cause of an upside-down view of the finish line?

Engine: 460ci Ford V-8
Transmission: Ford four-speed
Transfer case: Pair of NP205s
Axles, f/r: 2.5-ton Rockwell/2.5-ton Rockwell
Traction aids, f/r: Spool/Spool
Ratio: 6.72:1
Suspension, f/r: 20-inch-lift leaf springs/20-inch-lift leaf springs
Tires: 60x18.4-30 tractor
Special features: 750-cfm Holley double-pumper, aluminum high-rise intake, through-the-hood headers, 1410 U-joints and yokes, front and rear ladder bars, hydraulic steering, 15000 winch
Driver experience: 10 years

6: Tim Dallner, Sebringville, Ontario, Canada '94 Chevy S-10

"I think the cab is stock," Dallner says. Looks like he aims to keep it that way, too. He has conquered Canadian trails, now he wants to give Hollister's worst a try. Will you let him have a shot, eh?

Engine: 350ci Chevy V-8 with EFI
Transmission: TH350
Transfer case: ORD-doubled NP203/205
Axles, f/r: High-pinion Dana 60/High-pinion Dana 60
Traction aids, f/r: Detroit Locker/Spool
Ratio: 5.38:1
Suspension, f/r: Four-link, 16-inch-travel King coilovers/Four-link, 16-inch-travel King coilovers
Tires: 44-inch Boggers
Special features: Warn 8000 winch; exocage; bead locks
Driver experience: 12 years

7: Cole Deason, Coker, Alabama '05 Bluetorch Fusion three-seater

This custom rig seems to have the right formula, but can it withstand the rigors of the Frame Twister and Tank Trap?

Engine: 406ci Chevy V-8 with EFI and nitrous
Transmission: Built 700R4, manual reverse valve body
Transfer case: Atlas 3:1
Axles, f/r: 2.5-ton Rockwell/2.5-ton Rockwell
Traction aids, f/r: None/None
Ratio: 6.72:1
Suspension, f/r: Four-link, 16-inch-travel Fox coilovers/Four-link, 16-inch-travel Fox coilovers
Tires: 46-inch Mickey Thompson Baja Claws
Special features: Front and rear steer with return-to-center, 2-inch-diameter Ouverson Engineering axleshafts, aluminum heads, Warn 9000 winch, custom bead locks
Driver experience: 6 years

8: Dave Green, Red Deer, Alberta, Canada '06 homemade buggy

Another member of the Canadian Contingent wants to head south and challenge our evil events. With a diesel powerplant and a stout drivetrain, this rig looks good to go. Are looks deceiving? Vote him in and find out.

Engine: 5.9L 12-valve Cummins turbodiesel
Transmission: NV4500
Transfer case: NP241
Axles, f/r: 2.5-ton Rockwell/2.5-ton Rockwell
Traction aids, f/r: Detroit Locker/Detroit Locker
Ratio: 6.72:1
Suspension, f/r: Four-link, King coilovers/Four-link, King coilovers
Tires: 46-inch Mickey Thompson Baja Claws
Special features: Warn 12000 winch, bead locks
Driver experience: 25 years

9: Lance Longioth, Medford, Oregon '97 Chevy S-10 Blazer

Compared to many entrants, Longioth's Blazer is ultra-luxurious with leather seats and air conditioning. He says it was important to him that everything functions. Question is: Will the important stuff still function when the rig is cab-deep in Hole Six of the Tank Trap?

Engine: 4.3L Chevy V-6
Transmission: 4L60E
Transfer case: NP231 and electric shift NP233 (mated via aluminum adapter plate)
Axles, f/r: Dana 60/Dana 60
Traction aids, f/r: ARB Air Locker/Spool
Ratio: 5.38:1
Suspension, f/r: Four-link, airbags, Rancho RS 9000 shocks/Four-link, airbags, Rancho RS 9000 shocks
Tires: 38-inch Super Swamper TSLs
Special features: MileMarker 12000, custom bumpers and rock sliders, hydro-assist steering, rear-mounted fuel tank, transmission cooler, on-board air, throttle-body spacer
Driver experience: 12 years

10: Jeremy Naeger, Bloomsdale, Missouri '04 buggy

Naeger gets right to the point: "We will do what it takes to finish and try like heck to win." Gotta love that attitude. Will you give him a chance?

Engine: 350ci GM Ram Jet V-8 with nitrous
Transmission: TH400 with reverse valvebody
Transfer case: ORD-doubled NP203/205 with 1410 yokes
Axles, f/r: 2.5-ton Rockwell/2.5-ton Rockwell
Traction aids, f/r: OEM locker/OEM locker
Ratio: 6.72:1
Suspension, f/r: Four-link, 16-inch-travel King coilovers/Four-link, 16-inch-travel King coilovers
Tires: 49-inch Super Swamper IROKs
Special features: Warn 8000 winch, Wilwood dual-disc driveline brakes, Custom Differentials 47-spline axleshafts, front and rear steering, 17x12 Trailready bead locks, fan-cooled hydraulics, two Optima Yellow Top batteries, rear-mounted aluminum radiator with "monster" Spal electric fan
Driver experience: 16 years

Be sure to check out pages 2, 3, 4, & 5 to see all the rest of this years TTC Hopefuls!

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