As I write this show report, I am realizing fall is coming to a close and the winter holidays are upon us as we prepare to close out another year. One of the final truck shows of 2022 was the California Trucking Show, which was held on October 15-16, 2022. This convention-style truck show is always held at the Ontario Convention Center in Ontario, CA just off Interstate 10, about 40 miles east of downtown Los Angeles. And with three major truck stops nearby, an international airport, large industrial and shopping complexes, and four major freeways within a few miles of each other, this is the perfect place for trucks and a truck show – even if all of the real estate in the area is prime.
With 235 vendors, which was up from 214 vendors last year, the show filled two rooms of the convention center, along with a connecting hallway between the different areas. More than 225,000 square feet of vendor space offered all services related to trucking including job hirings, truck insurance, freight factoring and schooling, just to name a few. There were also parts and accessories, new products, a lot of chrome, and all the toys that truckers really love. The majority of the vendors were from the Southern California area, which really gives this show a local feel.
Oscar Medina and his crew from the California Trucking Show did a great job putting on this event again, as they have done for many years. Admission was free to get in, and even with the cloudy skies and some rain, the total number of attendees for the Saturday and Sunday show was up significantly from last year with over 20,000 local and industry attendees. This convention style truck show has a lot of activity, both inside the convention center and outside in the connected parking lot, where the truck beauty competition is held.
Inside the convention center, from opening to close, there was a constant hum of vendors sharing info about their company and giving away more free products and swag than you could carry in one bag. Most participants left with multiple bags of merchandise. While most of it was free, there was again many vendors selling quality products that included pillows for your cab, Bluetooth headsets, tires, and straps, just to name a few. If you like to gather information about the industry, this was the place to be. And to encourage people to show up, many vendors gave away great prizes like smart TVs, dash cams, electronics, and other items for those that entered the many raffle drawings held during the busy two-day event.
The 10-4 booth was in a different location this year, but still ended up on the corner of Main St. and Coolsville Lane. In typical 10-4 fashion, we gave away tons of magazines, posters, and centerfolds, along with some leftover swag from our annual Truckin’ for Kids Charity Show & Drags, held the month before in September. Making sure the 10-4 family of friends and advertisers got all the items they needed, the folks that took care of the booth while I was out and about shooting photos and taking in all the sights, both inside and out, were Jean, April, and Kenny.
The So Cal RC and West Coast Mini Truckers were there again and have become a staple at several Southern California shows. They had a smaller space this year, but still got the attention of the kids and the adult kids at heart, driving RC trucks around not only their booth, which featured all sorts of city scenes to maneuver around, but also through the convention center aisles on many occasions, as well. Everyone in attendance loved it!
Many trucks were parked inside and showcasing new lines of products including the latest in EV technology, new trailers, and other accessories, but outside was where the (mostly) working show trucks were hanging out. With clouds and some light rain on Saturday afternoon and evening, the weekend was not your typical Southern California weather. On Sunday morning, everyone outside was wiping down their trucks while more clouds loomed overhead, but fortunately, no rain fell that day.
Like the attendance from last year, this year saw an increase in the number of trucks from last year, as well. The 50 trucks on display outside that were judged were all bobtails and dump trucks, due to the size of the parking lot (remember that prime real estate I spoke of earlier). Working class trucks and a few show trucks filled the lot ready to be judged. This year, there were two trucks beautifully painted and wrapped in honor of our veterans, which was awesome.
The rigs outside participated in a fun and friendly judged competition that was hosted again by our friend Laura Machuca and her crew from Truck Club Magazine. 10-4 Magazine once again sponsored the People’s Choice Award and provided a beautiful trophy made for us by our friends at Rockwood Products. As she usually does, Laura put on a great show, and awarded the drivers with an array of plaques for different categories. But before the awards, a raffle was held for just the drivers of the show trucks. These raffle prizes included headlights, Bluetooth speakers, air horns, apparel certificates from Stay Loaded, a basket of detail products, a steering wheel, two 55” Smart TVs, and more to the lucky drivers that had the winning tickets.
After the raffle drawings were complete, the awards were given out by Laura and friends. Judging was done for several categories, and wooden plaques were presented for first place and runner up for each class, along with trophies for the Best in Show and People’s Choice. For the second year in a row, both the People’s Choice and Best in Show awards were won by the same truck. Last year, C.G. Soza won both with his red and blue 2016 Kenworth W900L (our December 2021 cover feature), and this year the winner of both awards was Jorge Bucio of Flying Nimbus and his classy black 2022 Peterbilt 389.
So, as I put a pin in my final truck show for the 2022 season, I am very optimistic by the rise in numbers both in attendance and trucks at the California Trucking Show this year. It seems this event just gets bigger and better every year. We hope to see you in Ontario next year, as the show dates have already been scheduled for October 14-15, 2023. Come out and enjoy some of that prime real estate with us. I would also like to wish our readers a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! And this year’s winners were:
CONSTRUCTION: 1st David Montes, Montes & Sons Trucking (2015 Peterbilt); 2nd Felipe Rosales, Rosales Trucking (2014 Kenworth).
INTERNATIONAL: 1st Mark Gomez, Fannum (2012 International); 2nd Mark Gomez, Fannum (2012 International).
FREIGHTLINER: 1st Adrian Covarrubias, CRST (2017 Freightliner); 2nd Enrique Alba (2014 Freightliner).
KENWORTH: 1st Brandon Smith, B&B Transport (2015 Kenworth); 2nd Ranvir Thandi, TRC Thandi (2006 Kenworth).
PETERBILT: 1st Manvir Singh, 22G Trucking (2022 Peterbilt); 2nd Mark Tarascou, Tarascou Trucking (2020 Peterbilt).
PAINT & GRAPHICS: 1st Roberto Martinez, Yamko Truck Lines (2014 Peterbilt); 2nd Arturo Conforte, Zata Trucking (2015 Kenworth).
BEST METAL SHINE: 1st Anna Alderete, TMT Industries (2022 Kenworth); 2nd Ernesto Perez, Carriers on Demand (2013 Volvo).
INTERIOR: 1st Alejandro Paz, Logix Express (2015 Kenworth); 2nd Dayal Transport (2020 Peterbilt).
ANTIQUE: 1st Elledge Trucking (1968 Peterbilt); 2nd Elledge Trucking (1987 International).
PEOPLE’S CHOICE: Jorge Bucio, Flying Nimbus (2022 Peterbilt).
BEST IN SHOW: Jorge Bucio, Flying Nimbus (2022 Peterbilt).