'04 Notable Notes
The '04 Sport Truck of the Year test revealed two things. First, Calin and Kevin both had a sense of humor, and pink is not Calin's color. Second, we realized that pitting a Dodge SRT10 against a Chevy Colorado doesn't really work. So, the SRT10 nabbed our first-ever Performance Pickup of the Year award, and the Nissan Titan grabbed the Truck of the Year title.
Gary Blount saved the day after we inherited the Hot Rod Hemi, an '02 Dodge Ram stuffed with a 528-inch Hemi crate motor. The truck had been driven hard and needed a full rebuild in time for the SEMA Show. Gary pulled it off, and after the show we somehow lost the truck. We guess the guys at HR liked it so much that they repo'd it and we never really got to cruise the thing. Oh well.
Our corporate licensing company put out a set of toy trucks called Sport Truck Lifters, which is a lame name for a style of truck that we weren't really known for back in '04. Why didn't they put out a 4/6 dropped Silverado on some billet wheels? Your guess is as good as ours.
'05 Notable Notes
The field was just four trucks deep in the last installment of the Sport Truck of the Year test. With so many hurdles to getting the OEMs to cough up the right trucks at the right time to test, this was all we could manage to test. Toyota's Tacoma X-Runner was the clear winner, with grippy handling and a motor that just wouldn't quit. We fell in love with this midsize from the first hit of the go-pedal.
The July issue marked the last time Joe Pettit and John O'Neil's names were on the masthead of the magazine. Joe bolted for a job with a trade publication, and John followed the dollars to another truck rag before the issue was finished. A search for Joe's replacement turned up Mike Finnegan, who just finished playing in the dirt and water at Off-Road and Hot Boat magazines. Finnegan settled in just in time to put the finishing touches on the cover, and he's been tweaking the mag along with the staff from behind his desk ever since.
'06 Notable Notes
In March, we hired Kevin Aguilar to replace Tom Gomez as our feature editor, and our cover shots have never looked so good.
Gary Blount also followed the dollars right out the door and onto another truck publication in May. It took a few months, but we found his replacement in a mini-trucker who had just helped launch a garage-based underground magazine about what else? Custom trucks. Galen Armenta became the staff editor in July. We also found our current art director and the man responsible for the visual upgrades ST recently received in August. Andy Mock is our new art monkey and resident home renovator guy.