The Houston, Texas, LRM Tour stop is always well represented by hydro hoppin’ Houstonians. In fact, the Houston Hop is one of the biggest crowd pleasers of the show. With the cars lined up next to each other on opposite sides of the Reliant Arena, it looks like they’re ready to battle it out with mad switch hitting and concrete car slamming. They like it hot in Houston.
DJ X-Ray started the announcement as if the cars were ready to rumble and he pumped up the crowd to give the competitors that little extra push that they needed to battle it out. Gilbert Gasca started the “battle” with his ’86 Chevy Blazer hitting 31 inches in two jumps. Then “Shorty” Villareal was up next and hit a crazy 72 inches with his “Texas Ranger” to take First Place in the Single-Pump Truck category. Shorty also topped the Single-Pump Car competition, hitting 47 inches with his ’64 Chevy Impala. Taking Second was Luis Morales with 33 inches and in Third was Blane Schlotterbeck, who hit 19 inches with his ’64 Impala.
In the Double-Pump category, Augie Gomez took First when his ’61 Impala hit 61 inches to set a new world record. Taking Second was Shorty Villareal with his ‘62 Impala, which hit a whopping 56 inches. Eli Esparza took Third thanks to a 52-inch hop with his ’61 Impala. In the Luxury Hop, Jorge Guzman abused his ’87 Buick Regal to the delight of the crowd, who yelled for more. Eventually, the front end of the Regal came apart, but not before Jorge hit 54 inches to claim First Place. Joe Narvais and his blue ’84 Olds Cutlass settled for Second with 46 inches.
After a few minutes of DJ X-Ray having fun with the crowd, it was time for the Radical hoppers to do battle. This section of the competition is well anticipated by young and old alike. What can be cooler than the front ends of cars hitting 74 inches? That’s how high Jorge Guzman hopped his ’87 Toyota. In fact, he almost flipped it over, wowing the crowd. There was a tie for Second Place between Adolfo Cantu and Jose Mireles, who both hit 54 inches. In Third came Lip Sot, who soared to 34 inches with his ’85 Cadillac. After the Arena was cleaned up and Quaker State gave away some prizes, it was time for the Street Car Dance competition, where contestants abuse their cars to the max. In this category, the bragging rights went to Fernando Casas from San Antonio, Texas, who made his ’81 Cutlass shake and rattle to a 21-point finish. Then Shorty was back to show how Houstonians get it done. Shorty totaled 20 points with his ’85 Cutlass named “El Travieso.” In Third came Albert Tejada with 19 points.
In the Street Truck Dance, the floor belonged to Juan Galvan, whose truck lost a window and still twisted to a 27-point finish. Josh Garza was Second with his ’89 Blazer and a score of 14 points. Coming in Third was Gilbert Gasca, who made his ’88 Chevy S-10 rattle to a nine-point finish. The lone contestant in the Radical Dance was Silverio Rosas, who had no problem finishing First with an eight-point score.
At the end of the Hop, DJ X-Ray came out once again to pump up the crowd for the upcoming live acts that were about to go on stage, but not before he thanked the hydro competitors for abusing their cars to the extreme and showing the H-town crowd what a popular sport this has become.