(Posted June 13, 2014)
By Sandi Latimer, Staff Writer
Danny Toops liked to tinker with diesel engines to make them more powerful. He also liked the sport of truck pulling where souped up trucks pull weighted sleds.
The London man kept working on his engine and eventually claimed second prize at the prestigious Scheid Diesel Competition, a truck pull event in Denver. Additionally, a trade magazine profiled the self-taught diesel mechanic and the business he built.
Toops was well on his way when it all came to an end in late November 2013. He was one of five men in a pickup truck that ran off State Route 161 and into a ditch. The vehicle rolled over. Toops was thrown out and killed instantly. Others in the vehicle were injured.
Within weeks, his friends and colleagues suggested that an event on the truck pull circuit be named in his honor.
The 1st Annual Danny Toops Memorial Truck Pull will be held June 14 at the Madison County Fairgrounds in London. Gates open at 1:30 p.m. Admission is $10.
T-shirts will be sold with proceeds going to start a fund for next year’s event, said Bridgett Shoemaker, who runs the Central Ohio Truck Pull Circuit with her father, Dennis Long,
Pullers will begin arriving around 2:30 p.m. Some will enter their polished vehicles in the Show and Shine competition at 3. Most spectators begin arriving around 5 p.m.
“They won’t want to miss the memorial service at 5:45,” Shoemaker said.
The service will honor Toops, who was on the circuit for about five years and was instrumental in adding the new 2.5 diesel class to the circuit.
Competition in six classes will begin at 6 p.m. The classes are 2.5 diesel, 2.6 diesel, 3.0 diesel, 6200 cheater stock gas, 6500 pro street gas and Run What Ya Brung.
Further information about the event and can be found at www.cotpc.com or by calling Bridgett Shoemaker at (740) 837-3341.