What a bummer! Old Bridge Township - RACEWAY PARK in Englishtown. NJ is closing! I hate seeing a piece of American history come to and end. Home of the Diesel Trucking Nationals for more than 40 years, no more....
Big Daddy Don Garlits, Shirley Muldowney, Don "the Snake" Prudhomme - John Force - so many legends laid down the rubber at Raceway Park....
The place will live on because every show open of American Trucker has me saying: "look at this line up!" That was shot at Raceway Park for the Diesel Trucking Nationals event. When I was there years ago, I was stoked to find one of the class champions was a Ford W Series "Country Boy" (and in his confusion, also named Blue Mule). I took this shot of him coming to the lights to defend his crown. A fond farewell to Raceway Park. Serious downer.
The landscape of trucking has changed dramatically in the last decade alone, there will be no stopping it from speeding into the future. Being that for what it is, I will be featuring my "Legends of the Road" series, showcasing classic trucks, companies, and drivers from the past. The purpose is simple: to honor and bring awareness to those who know or have not known what trucking in America (and beyond) has meant to the world. Being a truck freak from my earliest memories h...as only deepened in my adult life. All of the "classic" trucks and drivers of the day that made such an indelible impression upon me in my youth is NEVER to be forgotten!
Without any formal beginning, I'll start with GREENSTEIN. Produce haulers out of Pompano, Beach, FL. Lots of you know from my American Trucker series, that when I was a little kid, my parents toured me and my brothers and sisters around in a motor-home. We did an annual Thanksgiving trip to Disney World. Considering that I'm from Wisconsin, I didn't often see too many trucks/companies that ran the Southeast. I don't claim to be an authority on GREENSTEIN, but my first memories of seeing their trucks was jaw-dropping! 1st, you could not miss the name across the front bumpers! By today's standards, that is long gone, as most trucks don't even have a traditional-style bumper (Pete's not included, and some others)! It was a brilliant marketing decision by GREENSTEIN. Not only could I spot their trucks a mile off, but once I got close to them - man, it was better than riding Space Mountain, by a long shot! I never recall any truck in their fleet, or leased on, that wasn't loaded with chrome, whip antennas, twin stacks, AC, and general "cool" factor. Most of them were Peterbilts' and KWs'. They had a signature jade green paint scheme in a litany of designs.
Take a look at the 50's LJ Mack below. Not only was the LJ Mack the king of the early interstates, the GREENSTEIN one shown was sporting an integral sleeper, dual chrome stacks, twin air horns, twin spots, and Air! He was pulling a belly refer. There wasn't a driver of that day that didn't want to roll in that bad boy - guaranteed! Converse that to the 1976 double bunk Pete below it. 1st, "double bunk C.O.E." Budd wheels, visor, and a killer stainless refer in tow! Talk about bringing the produce in style! If you look closely, he was at a motel. (I would have slept in the truck, without question). Many of you know all about GREENSTEIN. For the people that never got to see them delivering America in action back in the day, you missed out! GREENSTEIN - certified "LEGENDS OF THE ROAD!" #legendsoftheroad
Remembering Tom West Sr. - thoughts and prayers go out to my good friend Tom West Jr. - the man behind www.Ilovedumptrucks.com. If any of you know Tom from #Quadrant #Quicksilver -you know what a great guy he is. His father delivered a lot of jet fuel in his day, as you can see here in this picture of him in 1977 - ready to get to the airport, using his 4300 IH . . . God Speed. R.I.P.
"The driver of the semi-truck, U.S. Army veteran Bradley Faulkner" - making us all proud! Thank you for your service Bradley, in uniform, and on the roads. God Bless your WWII veteran grandfather Kristen Collins - I only hope that today's generation never forgets "the Greatest Generation" - men like your grandfather who battled the Nazis and defeated them, so we all can enjoy liberty and freedom. There are so precious few WWII veterans left. Bradley Faulkner certainly did his part in preserving those freedoms, you are what it's all about. Salute!
If anyone wants to help Evel ascend to the top - there are only a few more days left to help us do it! VOTE FOR EVEL!
I wish everyone a safe and Happy Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, or "Festivas" (for the rest)!! BIG thanks to all of Santa's most dependable helpers - trucks and truckers! Make sure that you tell your loved ones how much they mean you and be thankful for even the smallest of things in life - PEACE to all, God Bless.
(please feel free to share this W Series inspired card)
Ol' Blue will miss you RJ - R.I.P.
Your legacy will move on down the road...
...And since today is all about giving- I thought I would share this "highly entertaining" story that you can share with your family and friends. It will make you laugh until it is painful (or should, provided you don't think like Mike). First, I ask Mike: have you ever heard of Evel Knievel and the Snake River Canyon, circa 1974?
Next - Mike claims "he doesn't believe in science." Yet, he states: "I know about aerodynamics and fluid dynamics and how things move through th...e air, about the certain size of rocket nozzles, and thrust. But that’s not science, that’s just a formula. There’s no difference between science and science fiction.”
So Mike, since you bring up AIR, I guess none of that other stuff has anything to do with the periodic table of the elements? (you know, people use it for cooking - rockets, or blueberry muffins).
This needs to become teaching material for middle school curriculums, but for now, use it as SUPER THANKSGIVING conversation! It is free of politics and covered in ignorant gravy!
"Semi-autonomous." Without getting into the myriad of point-counter points - this is impressive. If you just focus your thoughts on the transportation of goods, this is amazing. LTL is blown wide open. The future has arrived - 11/17-2017.
The Southern Classic Truck Show - keeps delivering!
With all of today's nonsensical garbage of "taking a knee" for our American flag (propagated by an idiot over a false narrative) - with the greatest of respect and thankfulness we all must stand up to recognize our Veterans on this Veterans Day more than ever. Long before privileged, multi-millionare "game players" were born, our fighting best, and our allies - all branches - fought, bled, and died on foreign soil so that freedom could endure. In WWII alone, there were 291,55...7 American soldiers killed - 671,846 wounded... men that lost arms, legs, hands, and their very eyes - defending the flag. Those that sit/kneel - are spitting on their graves and in the eyes of every living Veteran who willingly served to preserve liberty and freedom for every generation. Starting with the GREAT, General George Washington, who fought tyrannical government oppression - real oppression - in the American Revolution, that paved the way for the freedoms often taken for granted today. Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it. With all of the sacrifices made by every previous and current American armed services member - THANK YOU, you are far better than I, and I recognize how noble you all are and what your sacrifice has meant for individual freedom. Shout out to my brother Craig who served in the Special Forces/82nd Airborne - and to every Veteran on Veterans Day - Salute!
I was recently asked to do an online interview with a wide range of issues/topics. "The future of trucking" and the like...
To quote the coolest truck film of all time: "times might have changed - but I ain't!"