Pride and Polish

2016 GATS Best of Show winner, Builders Bobtail: The next ‘Project’

The crew out of Triple R Diesel’s Texas Chrome Shop showed its latest highly custom build for the first time at GATS, culminating more than a year-long venture that Texas Chrome’s Roland Mendez says “sets a new bar” for the company’s show rigs.

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2016 GATS Best of Show winner, Limited-Mileage Bobtail: The Premier 359

Owner-operator Kary Bryce of Sibley, La., founded his fleet in 1988 with a single Peterbilt 359. He’s always had 359s running in his operation, now at 116 trucks, he says. What’s now Bryce’s most-famed 359 he bought in 1996.

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2016 GATS Best of Show winner, Working Bobtail: Equipment hauler’s dream

Boullion’s showed the Pete for four straight years at GATS, never thinking he’d pick up the coveted Best of Show nod. “It was a shock,” he says. “I still pinch myself. It’s something I’d never thought I’d even get.”

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Video: Overdrive’s Most Beautiful Brita Nowak talks tough times, more at GATS

Nowak charmed everyone with her frankness about her breast cancer journey and her passion for all things trucking.

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2016 GATS Best of Show winner, Limited-Mileage Combo: Crème de la crème

Freddy Velasco’s 2003 Peterbilt 379 was given an overhaul before the 2015 Great American Trucking Show, perhaps highlighted by Velasco’s unique paint scheme of purple and “crème brule.” The rig’s “California Dreamin'” moniker was suggested to Velasco by, what else, the model year. It won’t be picking up produce out in the Golden State anytime soon, he says.

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2016 GATS Best of Show winner, Limited-Mileage Bobtail: Candice Cooley’s classically new 389

Candice Cooley wanted to build a truck with a vintage feel without having to restore an older model. She decided to take a 2017 Peterbilt 389 and custom build it from top to bottom to give it a classic finish while still being a newer model.

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2016 Pride & Polish National Champion, Builders Class Bobtail: From ‘ratted out’ to rat rod

Following a few years off from the showing his small fleet’s trucks, Minnesota-based aggregates hauler Jonathan Eilen said he wanted to “come back and make a statement” on the Pride & Polish circuit this year. Just six weeks after qualifying, Eilen left GATS with his statement made and a National Championship trophy in hand.

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2016 Pride & Polish National Champion, Builders Class Combo: A father’s special truck build

The Virginia-based small fleet owner says he’s been writing down ideas for an autism-dedicated truck build for years. When Manuel picked up a brand new ‘15 389 glider from Fitzgerald last year, he set to work right away, tearing the truck down and prepping it to actualize his list of ideas.

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2016 Pride & Polish National Champion, Limited-Mileage Combo: Jordan Jay takes the family mantle

Jay’s company, Jay Transport out of Rigdy, Idaho, hauls specialized over-length shipments on the West Coast. The fleet runs 23 trucks total, most of them leased owner-operators. But the seven fleet trucks owned by Jay himself all sport the two-tone look. “It’s kind of my thing,” he says. “My dad kinda had his theme, and I have my theme. I wanted it to be similar -- classy and clean just like his, but in my ...

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2016 Pride & Polish National Champion, Working Bobtail: The original ‘Icon’

The 2015 Kenworth W900 Icon shown jointly by Kyle Cousins and Sid Calangelo is a rarity on the show circuit simply by way of being an Icon. However, Cousins’ KW is even more of a rarity: It’s the first-ever Icon edition built by Kenworth, numbered 000.

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