Jean, NV – Championships are hard to come by. It takes consistency and speed for an entire season. The winner gets their name in the record books. Those who round out the championship podium get the respect of fellow competitors and some well-deserved acknowledgment from the fans. Steve Olliges was unable to chase down the championship winner Jason Voss this season but he beat 59 other drivers on his way to third place in the Best in the Desert, Trick Truck championship.
Steve and his Team Ford crew put together a great season in 2013. He also finished third in the Camburg “Best in the Desert” standings that distinguish the fastest competitors for the entire year. Steve covered every mile of every race, 2,038 miles in all, at an average speed of 53.9 miles per hour. When you are going that fast, safety is a concern. Mastercraft Safety equipment allowed him to stay comfortable and in control. He maintained his speed driving in dusty conditions and during the night with the aid of his KC Hilites LED lighting. For every high-speed section he encountered, there were countless miles of tight sand washes, rocky mountain switchbacks and miles of whoops.
You don’t accomplish results like that without a fast truck, good sponsors and a great race program; Steve has all three and the driving talent to capitalize on it. He took delivery of his new Geiser Brothers #27 Trick Truck just before the Mint 400. His truck is their newest version that uses laser notched and fully fixtured, CNC bent tubing. It is powered by a Dougan Race Engine, 454 cubic inch small block Ford that puts out incredible torque and horsepower.
Trick Trucks take a ton of abuse while pounding through the desert; precise suspension damping is crucial. FOX 4.4 inch diameter external bypass and coilover shocks at each wheel control the 39 inch tall BFGoodrich Tires. The BFGoodrich Baja T/A’s utilize the latest in tread pattern and construction technology and are mounted to TrailReady Beadlock Wheels.
Getting the truck ready to race is the responsibility of Mark Newhan. His meticulous preparation is a big part of maintaining the team’s consistency. Steve’s codriver Jason Bateman rode every mile with Steve. He keeps them on course and jumps in to quickly fix any problems they might experience on race day. With almost a full season of racing the truck under their belts now, chasing a 9th career championship for Steve will be squarely in their sights in 2014.