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TTC 2013 - Hill Climb

Posted in Top Truck Challenge: 2013 on October 9, 2013
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Photographers: Jeremy Cook

Our Hill Climb should probably be called the “Hell Climb.” It takes place on a poison oak-lined, steep hillside that boasts a gnarly 60-degree average incline. As if that wasn't bad enough, we bring in a massive excavator and dig a number of deep, strategically-placed holes and we leave lots of loose dirt lying around to further complicate things. This masterpiece is approximately 600 feet of misery and it has a reputation of stopping rigs in their tracks and sometimes even putting them on their sides.

The Hill Climb proved to be very difficult this year resulting in some awesome wheel stand action during runs. Pepe "Peps" Palomo was the first to attempt the Hill Climb and he did a great job making it about half way up before he lost forward momentum and ended up sliding back down the hill at which point his lime green Tacoma ended up rolling down the hill. Luckily both Pepe and his co-driver were not hurt during the roll thanks to the mandatory roll cage.

Paul Boundy's 2003 Chevy Silverado was not ready in time for the Hill Climb as it still needed to get a new set of front gears to be able to safely attempt the steep loose Hill Climb.

Aaron Fava once again came out to impress us all as he pushed his full size crew cab Chevy through the trail while grabbing rear steer to traverse the off camber climb near the end of the Hill Climb. At one point he was on two-wheels looking like it was going to flop on it's side against the trees but Aaron's skill with rear steer kept the big behemoth Chevy from rolling into the poison oak making it all the way across the finish line.

Nolan and Tyler Skopliak made a great effort to make it up the Hill Climb having to winch a bit to make progress up the trail. Nolan got the GMC K5 Jimmy to do wheel stands quite a few times before powering his way up to the top of the Hill Climb. Top Truck isn't like other competitons because both the driver and the co-driver have to make it to the finish without timing out. Tyler Skopliak didn't let the steep Hill Climb deter him as he sprinted up the last 30 yards of the Hill Climb in a heroic way to finish within the allotted time limit. There was no stopping Tyler as he gave it his all and raced up the hill in what would have surely dropped a lesser man to his knees.

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