Directly in front of the Thump Records stage in San Antonio, Texas, 36 hydraulic entries in seven of nine classes lined up to compete inside the boundaries of a chain-link fence. Officially sponsoring the 2002 Scrapin’ Tour circuit is hydraulic equipment supplier ShowTime Hydraulics. With ShowTime puttin’ up the prize money and Go-Lo Entertainment managing the hopping sticks and the car dance clock what could go wrong? Well, if you count burning pumps and bursting fluid hoses, plenty could go wrong, but it’s all in a day’s work in the pits.
Winning the Single-Pump class out of five entries was Hi-Low Hydraulics user Dave Marquez. Dave shot to First Place at 51 inches and won the Daily Double of $500 after competing in San Francisco. Next came Eddie Baeza who hit 43 inches for Second, while the Go-Lo guys wrote in Sotero (AKA “Shorty”) Villareal with a 40-inch jump in Third. Usually the Double-Pump class is next, but no double-pumpin’ dudes entered in San Antonio, so it was on to the Radical Hop. Shorty is well known in his home state of Texas and he’s often the crowd favorite. This time he had a surprise and stood his truck up to the almighty one upstairs in a few short hops. A new world record of 107 inches and First Place for the green and white truck which had to be rocked back to the ground by the crew and staff. Now that’s an act that’s hard to follow, but Jose Regalado gave it his best shot. Jose climbed to 58 inches to Second Place, while Juan Galvan measured up to 52 inches and Third.
The Truck Hop saw Shorty again and two other class winners. The number 59 must have been Shorty’s lucky number because that’s what he hit to get First Place in the Truck Hop. Gilbert Gasca made the Second Place grade at 42 inches and David Garcia got on board the winner’s podium with a 41-inch leap.
Riding in the lap of luxury in the Luxury class was a new record. Cesar Martinez ran up the sticks to 60 big inches and set a new world record in the process of winning First Place. Luis Morales from LM Customs hopped to a 52-inch height for the Second spot, while Greg James reached 38 inches to claim Third.
With no Radical dancers announced, the Go-Lo crew went on to the Car Dance category, which featured more metal-to-metal wreckage than a Terminator movie. Fernando Casas scored a hard-earned 30 points for First Place with a mind-blowing performance. Jose Martinez then backed it up with a Second Place score of 28 points, while Zefe Carvizalas ranked Third with 16 points. With time running out before the show came to an end, the Truck Dance and Radical dancers made sure that their batteries were fully juiced. You’d better have your cameras ready because these guys play to win!
Here’s a name that you might have heard before, Brett Kopitz. With years of experience under his belt, Brett magnificently came close to 30 points, amassing 28, for First Place. Mr. Gilbert Gonzales closed in on Second Place with a tight score of 27 points, while Josh Garza collected 24 points for Third.
As they say, the best is saved for last and the maniacal Car and Truck Radical Dance guys rolled in their super entries. It’s not the first time and it probably won’t be the last, but two guys scored 30 points to a grand applause; Juan Galvan and Yaritz Elizondo. They both shared the First Place spot, splitting $750 and pocketing $375 each. All that Silverio Rosas III had to do was last the required 90 seconds for Third Place and he did just that to make the record books at the last hydraulics hopping contest on the 2002 Scrapin’ Tour.
To be completely honest, what we actually witnessed is hard to put onto these pages. It can better be illustrated on a HDTV big screen TV viewed from a comfy recliner with a nice cold one in both hands. You get the picture? That’s where the action is!