Oaklands Truck Show turns on the glam
FROM humble beginnings nine years ago where 17 trucks rolled up to the first Oaklands Truck Show, the event has evolved into a key event on the annual Australian truck show calendar.
In 2017, the small Riverina town was filled with the sound of diesel engines as just on 100 trucks converged on the Oaklands Recreation Ground on the weekend of March 18-19.
With the support of sponsors from Oaklands businesses and the nearby larger centres of Wagga Wagga and Albury-Wodonga, and a considerable amount of volunteer effort from local Lions Clubs, the small Truck Show Committee again delivered, with a healthy crowd in attendance.
Money raised from the event will be put back into local community projects such as the War Memorial and the Oaklands Recreation Ground.
With trucks on display from across the wider Riverina and from as far afield as Bega, Melbourne and Shepparton, the high quality of presentation was evident, with prizes awarded across 12 categories.
This included the coveted Truck of the Show, which this year carried a prize of $2000.
Proceedings kicked off on the Saturday night with a line-up of trucks with their lights on for the Lights on The Hill award, which has been dedicated in remembrance of Wayne 'Marto' Martin.
Wayne was a popular and well known driver and had attended the 2016 Oaklands event, taking out the small fleet category with two of his fellow Dawson's Haulage drivers.
He passed away in a truck accident near Deniliquin four days after last year's show and in honour of his memory, the Martin family have provided a perpetual trophy for the Lights on the Hill category. Scott Hawkins took out the Lights on The Hill category with his Kenworth T401.
Local transport operator David Sheridan officially opened the proceedings on the Sunday, as judging of the trucks across the various categories got under way.
Along with raffles, market stalls and kids activities, the main area held a display of utes and historic cars.
Taking out the top prize for Truck of the Show in 2017 was R&S Trucking of Wagga Wagga with their Kenworth T900, while in other categories, the Peterbilt 388 of NGH took out both the People's Choice and Best Customised awards, Gray's Transport of Finley took out Best Fleet with their trio of Kenworths and Gunnfreight took out best truck in the 10-29 year category with their International Transtar.
With the introduction in 2011 of an Honour Roll for local people who have made a contribution to the local transport industry, the inductee for 2017 was John (Jack) Good. Jack spent a number of years driving trucks for WJ and NE Hayes and later for EW Day and Sons, who both based their operations in Oaklands.
In 1977, while driving for WJ & NE Hayes, Jack was awarded a High Mileage Certificate from Mercedes-Benz in Germany for the successful operation of his Mercedes Benz over 500,000km.
In 2018 the event will celebrate its 10th anniversary. It's bound to be a big one!
OAKLANDS TRUCK SHOW WINNERS
Truck of the Show: R & S Trucking Wagga, 1993 Kenworth T900
Runner-up Truck of the Show: Burkinshaw Transport Lockhart, 2016 Kenworth T409 SAR
Lights on the Hill (dedicated to Wayne "Marto” Martin): Scott Hawkins 2004 Kenworth T401
Best Local Truck: Brooks Trucking, Oaklands 2011 T909 Kenworth
Best Specialised Truck: Mackin Forklifts Shepparton 2007 Volvo FM Tray
People's Choice: NGH Express Dandenong, 2015 Peterbilt T388