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Top Truck Challenge 101: Obstacle Course

Posted in Top Truck Challenge: 2014 on May 23, 2014
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Day two of the three-day Top Truck Challenge competition kicks off bright and early with a real eye-opener, the Obstacle Course. This course is typically ¼-mile in length and it features a gamut of challenges that happen in rapid-fire succession.

Competitors are staged on top of a mountain and there’s only one way down. That way is a slippery, steep hill descent. Once descended, the competitors are in the “lower section,” and it has a few tight turns that swing them 360 degrees to a hillclimb. This hillclimb carries them to the “upper section” that is dotted with various obstacles, tight turns, and off-camber sections. Competitors then traverse a small hill descent to the final section near the finish line that is highlighted by a tricky, off-camber dogleg.

Hard to picture in your mind? We’ll summarize the Obstacle Course by saying it’s tight, unforgiving, stressful, and loads of high-adrenalin fun. The course rewards those who don’t lose their cool. For example, cones mark the course and hitting a cone results in a large 20-second time penalty added to the overall elapsed course time. Over the years, many competitors have had very fast raw times on this course, only to finish back in the pack due to penalties from hitting cones or due to other penalties. We’ve also seen vehicles suffer significant damage in the Obstacle Course, especially in the final dogleg section that’s within view of the finish line. Adding to the pressure is that the Obstacle Course is only the first event of the day. This means competitors have to wheel with prudence since there are still two more events.

Here you can see Roger King challenging the Obstacle Course at Top Truck Challenge 2010 in his ’64 Dodge Power Wagon.

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