It’s no big secret that the Great Salt Lake Kidney Kamp Truck Show is one of my favorite events of the show season. Held in Electric Park at Thanksgiving Point in Lehi, Utah, just south of Salt Lake City proper, this year’s event was held on August 15th and 16th and, like every year for the past 25 years, was put on by Jeff England of Pride Transport, based in Salt Lake City, UT.
This show is always great to attend – not just because you get to see some great trucks in a nice setting, but because the money generated by this event always goes to a good cause – the National Kidney Foundation of Utah and Idaho. With proceeds from this show, the foundation is able to send families to a retreat in the mountains where they can get away from the chaos of city life but still get the proper care necessary for their children who contend with kidney disease and other kidney problems of varying sorts.
This year, like the last few, the weather for the show was perfect. With warm (even hot) temperatures and clear skies with little wind, not only was everyone comfortable, but the trucks stayed clean all weekend, too. Thanksgiving Point is known for its lush, green grass, and combined with the clear blue sky, you couldn’t ask for better conditions for shooting pictures. Saturday set the stage for a more relaxed feeling since the judging was complete. Drivers, their family and friends, individuals who benefit from the Kidney Kamp, and any and all who are interested in trucks, walked around the show and enjoyed the day.
The competition was as strong as ever in Utah this year, with some old faces, and some new ones, as well. As always, CREST/Christensen Oil made a very strong showing with their dark blue and white fuel and oil hauling combinations. Jay Transport of Rigby, ID also looked good with two of their nice rigs, including Dean Jay’s boss’ ride – a stellar cream and brown 379 Peterbilt with a matching flatbed. Polished from front to back, Dean Jay’s “Cream Puff” made for stiff competition. Jay Transport’s “Copper Penny” 379, driven by Jason Jackman, came to the show ready to compete, too. Both Dean and Jason represented the state of Idaho extremely well.
As always, Jeff England brought out some awesome rides from his company, Pride, as well. Favoring some of the newer trucks, Jeff’s drivers had several Freightliners on display, showing that even aero trucks can look cool when done right. With that being said, Jeff’s personal ride, a gray and black long-hood A-model Kenworth, was chief amongst the Pride trucks at the show. McAllister Enterprises debuted their recently rebuilt 362 Peterbilt cabover, as well. Painted white and yellow, this truck was very popular at the show. Running out of American Fork, UT, the McAllister rigs always prove to be crowd favorites at this show, and it’s no wonder. Tri-H Farms was also on hand with their perfectly-kept red and white Kenworth W900.
Some of the new faces at the show this year included the crew from Tim Savage Trucking. Cattle haulers from Herriman, UT, Tim and Sherry Savage, along with their driver Jeff Hansen, had their two sweet 389s at the show. Respectively painted metallic blue and metallic green, each accented with silver and white striping, the two trucks both showed well for the livestock-hauling community. Jade was also in attendance with one of their spotless Peterbilts – and they did a good job of representing Canada’s finest.
But this show isn’t just about the trucks. It’s about meeting with old friends and making some new ones, as well. Even if they don’t bring a truck along, it’s impossible to see this show without running into some old friends and having a good time. Until the awards ceremony starts on Saturday afternoon, it’s all about relaxing, having a good time, chewing the fat, and maybe talking a little business. There aren’t a whole lot of secrets at this show – the drivers are happy to talk about their trucks and/or tell others how something was built or who built it. And that’s the sort of atmosphere a show needs.
The show is family-friendly, too. Aside from shiny trucks, the event also offers a “cow-train” for the kids to ride (cow-painted wagons hooked together and pulled by an ATV). Show producer Jeff England has always worked hard to keep this event classy from stem to stern, and makes sure that nobody gets too rowdy or out-of-hand. And though some may find that boring, we think it makes for a great show that we can always recommend to people with children. In addition to that, Thanksgiving Point features numerous hotels nearby, as well as shopping and other activities. This show is certainly an event that you can make a mini-vacation out of.
With Saturday afternoon rolling around, the show began to wind-down. After the awards were handed out and the numerous competitors were heading home with plaques featuring pictures of their rigs in the respective classes they won, it was the conclusion of yet another fantastic Great Salt Lake Kidney Kamp Truck Show.
Most truck shows have something special that sets them apart from the rest, and that is especially true for this one. Raising thousands of dollars every year for the Kidney Kamp and the National Kidney Foundation of Utah and Idaho makes this an event that you can be proud to attend – as a spectator or a competitor. So, make a note of it now and get yourself to one of the best shows on the calendar. It’s worth attending, if nothing else, to benefit a good cause. Drive all night, book your loads early and get ready for some fun, because this show won’t disappoint. This year’s winners were:
OPEN TRACTOR: 1st Matt Long of Robinson; 2nd Ruben Cruz of Zamura; 3rd Ron Cornaby.
SMALL FLEET TRACTOR: 1st Jason Vriens of Hartly Produce; 2nd Jack Hepner of Harper Precast; 3rd Jacob Prescott of Harper Precast.
LARGE FLEET TRACTOR: 1st Mike Christensen of Robinson; 2nd Doug Andrus; 3rd Lee Geisler.
NEW TRACTOR: 1st Carlos Juarez of Oropeza Bros; 2nd Tim Savage of Tim Savage Trucking; 3rd Chuck Russel of Walmart.
OLD WORKING TRACTOR: 1st Matt McAllister of McAllister Enterprises.
OPEN COMBO: 1st Dean Jay of Jay Transport; 2nd Steve Beattie of Godfrey; 3rd Tracey Rafferty of C.R. England.
SMALL FLEET COMBO: 1st Jason Jackman of Jay Transport; 2nd Brandon Scott of Christensen Oil; 3rd Frank Praskett of Wanship.
LARGE FLEET COMBO: 1st Darin Mantas of Pride; 2nd Mark Rafferty of C.R. England; 3rd Tommy Bennett of Pride.
OWNER OPERATOR COMBO: 1st Glen Hanson of Tri-H Farms; 2nd Jeff Hansen of Tim Savage Trucking; 3rd Ricardo Ornelas of Smoot Bros.
NEW COMBO: 1st Brian Wardlow of Pride; 2nd John Hennessey of Cottonwood Motors; 3rd Jaimie Painter of K & B Oil.
OLD WORKING COMBO: 1st Jeff England of Pride; 2nd Elden Easterdly of Gary Amoth Trucking; 3rd Mike Higley.
ANTIQUE: 1st Glen Hansen of Tri-H Farms; 2nd Jeff England of Pride; 3rd Dan Poucson of Robinson.
TANKER: 1st Brandon Scott of Christensen Oil; 2nd Martin Warner of Jade Transport; 3rd Dean Roberts of Deseret.
LIGHT/MEDIUM DUTY: 1st Mike Ahlstrom; 2nd Mike Muncie; 3rd Lynn Jacobson.
LARGE COMBINATION VEHICLE: 1st Christensen Oil; 2nd Cade Peterson of Wheeler; 3rd David Spraw of Larsen Trans.
DRY BULK: 1st Robinson.
ENGINE: 1st Jeff England of Pride; 2nd Jason Vriens of Hartley Produce; 3rd Dean Jay of Jay Transport.
INTERIOR (CAB ONLY): 1st Matt Long of Robinson; 2nd Mike Christensen of Robinson; 3rd Brandon Scott of Christensen Oil.
INTERIOR (OEM SLEEPER): 1st Elden Easterdly of Gary Amoth Trucking; 2nd Jeff England of Pride; 3rd Dean Jay of Jay Transport.
INTERIOR (CUSTOM SLEEPER): 1st Dave & Linda Skeen of Skeen Construction.
PAINT (TRACTOR): 1st Joe Deede of Godfrey; 2nd Matt Long of Robinson; 3rd Glen Hansen of Tri-H Farms.
PAINT (COMBO): 1st Frank Paskett of Wanship; 2nd Dean Jay of Jay Transport; 3rd Brandon Scott of Christensen Oil.
MURAL (TRACTOR): 1st Mark of Aero Express; 2nd Mike Higley.
MURAL (COMBO): 1st Tracey Rafferty of C.R. England; 2nd Frank Paskett of Wanship.
LIGHTS (TRACTOR): 1st Matt Long of Robinson; 2nd Matt McAllister of McAllister Enterprises; 3rd Mike Christensen of Robinson.
LIGHTS (COMBO): 1st Glen Hansen of Tri-H Farms; 2nd Rand Williams of KB Oil; 3rd Dean Jay of Jay Transport.
BEST OF SHOW TRACTOR: Matt Long of Robinson.
BEST OF SHOW COMBO: Dean Jay of Jay Transport.
BEST OF SHOW SPECIALTY: Brandon Scott of Christensen Oil.
CONTESTANT’S CHOICE: Dean Jay of Jay Transport.