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Cash, training up for grabs at Rush Tech Rodeo

| December 16, 2013
Brain Smith, from Rush Truck Center - Austin, troubleshoots a Paccar MX engine.

Brian Smith, from Rush Truck Center – Austin, troubleshoots a Paccar MX engine.

Sunday marked the beginning of the 2013 Rush Truck Center Tech Rodeo in San Antonio with a paint and body repair challenge. The event continues through Tuesday when the Texas-based dealership group will crown its top medium- and heavy-duty technicians.

Monday began the round for engine techs, with each hoping to move on to the final round Tuesday and compete for a share of more than $20,000 in prize money.

Technicians were given 45 minutes to find and diagnose complaints on a variety of heavy- and medium-duty units. Contestants are asked to find the reason an engine won’t start, not necessarily make the repair.

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Brandon Sloan, of Rush Truck Center – Salt Lake City, says he believes the fault on the MaxxForce-powered ProStar he was assigned was caused by a restriction in the fuel return line.

He made his determination after about 20 minutes of diagnostic testing. 

Sloan, a technician for 5 years, has been with Rush for three years.

Brain Smith, from Rush Truck Center – Austin and Peterbilt’s Wade Walterscheid troubleshoots a Paccar MX engine with the aid of diagnostic software.

Brian Smith, from Rush Truck Center – Austin, and Peterbilt’s Wade Walterscheid troubleshoot a Paccar MX engine with the aid of diagnostic software.

The 2013 installment was his second Rodeo, but his first as a heavy-duty tech after making the switch from medium-duty.

Wesley Huddleson, from Rush Truck Center – Columbus (Ohio) -West, finished only a few minutes behind Sloan, but found a different issue on his International.

Huddleson, a seven year veteran Rush technician competing in his first rodeo, diagnosed his problem as a faulty fuel pump. 

Rush Truck Center technicians from across the U.S. may have descended on South Texas with hopes of winning cash and prizes, but Huddleson says there is no shortage of things you can take from the Rodeo if you don’t take home some loot.

“It’s definitely a good training opportunity,” he says. “To be able to talk with (OEM representatives) and to get more of a corporation feel for it. Networking, too. To be able to talk to different bosses and realize that it’s not just our shop having potential problems or good days and bad days. Everybody shares in that.”

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