Ultimate Callout Challenge: Drivers 13 And 14 Announced

#13 Joshua Gruis: Jag’s Pro Truck Shop

Josh Gruis was a rookie at the 2017 Ultimate Callout Challenge, but the President of Jag’s Pro Truck Shop in Zimmerman, Minnesota did not let his rookie status hold him back from delivering the goods in the competition. After diesel drag racing with the truck in Super Street for many years successfully, Gruis opted to go for it in UCC competition to prove that he and his small team had what it takes to compete with the best.

So in 2017 the small Minnesota shop brought their steel-bodied/full frame 2004 Dodge Ram 2500 drag truck down to Indianapolis and competed with the big names of diesel performance on the world stage in the second UCC. Gruis and his team at Jag’s Pro Truck Shop built the truck in every aspect with their own hands with tons of blood, sweat, and tears along the way.

They did not simply order an engine, turbo setup, fuel system, and transmission then assemble the pieces to make a go-fast truck, the team built it all themselves in-house. The engine is a 6.4-liter Cummins that is built to handle the rigors of UCC competition on the track while churning out plenty of power on the dyno.

With the help of some parts sponsorship from Goerend Transmission Gruis and his team built a strong 48RE Dodge transmission to hold up to the power from the Cummins race engine and the heavy steel truck. While competing at the 2017 UCC Gruis was able to bang through the gears to the tune of a 9.797-second pass that landed him in 7th place after the first day of competition.

Then on the chassis dyno, he finished in 11th place with nearly 1,400 HP and more than 2,150 lbs-ft of torque put to the rear wheels as the very first truck to make a competition run on the dyno Saturday morning. He finished UCC 2017 with a 286-foot pull that yielded an 8th place finish for the day and a 6th place overall finish.

Gruis and his team plan to attack the Ultimate Callout Challenge once again for 2018 armed with their 2017 experience and after making fine tuning tweaks to the truck they expect to climb higher in the ranking in individual events as well as in the overall. With their Minnesota work ethic and build-it-yourself racing attitude, we expect good things from the Jag’s Pro Truck Shop team as they tackle the UCC in 2018.

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#14 Jeremy Wagler: Wagler Competition Products

Most diesel enthusiasts and performance aficionados would tend to agree that the best truck to tackle a competition involving drag racing, sled pulling and dyno measurement would be a 4WD. Well, Jeremy Wagler is different than most people and he chose to attack the 2017 Ultimate Callout Challenge with a totally different animal in the form of a turbo and supercharged Duramax based 2WD truck affectionately known as the ShopTruck.

The unorthodox approach Wagler and his team from Wagler Competition Products finished the truck just before the 2017 UCC competition and headed to the event with an untested machine that was the talk of the town. Of course, it didn’t hurt in the popularity department that the truck was piloted down the dragstrip by Farmtruck from Street Outlaws.

The 500-cubic inch, 8.2-liter DX500 engine Wagler developed for the UCC competition used the aforementioned super/turbocharger compound combination in addition to water-meth injection. It is a Duramax based engine with a billet block and a lot of go-fast know-how incorporated into the build. The engine is backed by a custom Neal Chance torque converter with a Rossler TH400 transmission to get the power to the big slicks on the drag strip or massive cut tires for the sled pulling track.

Unfortunately for Wagler and his team their new build experienced some teething pains and did not deliver the power they hoped. During the truck’s only pass down the strip, the engine had an injector wiring issue that resulted in seven-cylinder performance as well as an issue that pressurized the case and blew out the rear main seal.

Despite the problems, the truck laid down an 11.457-second pass putting him squarely in the middle of the pack in 15th place. But the refresh on the engine took longer than they hoped and they missed the dyno competition on Saturday. On Sunday the team came back strong with a pull of just under 300-foot even though the super/turbo combination was still not playing well together.

The ShopTruck is a platform that Wagler and his team use to develop and advance new diesel performance technology, so they are constantly playing with the combination. Since the 2017 UCC competition, Wagler has continued to tweak the ShopTruck and decided to remove the turbos from the DX500 engine and let the supercharger go it alone.

The truck has really come to life making several exhibition hooks and a few passes down the strip and the team is very hopeful that they will have a very good showing at the 2018 UCC. They expect that the engine is capable of making 3,000 horsepower and hope to show it on the dyno during the upcoming UCC.

Can a 2WD truck with an experimental engine be competitive in the UCC world of competition? Be sure and get your tickets to find out how it all unfolds at the Lucas Oil Raceway in Indianapolis, Indiana!

About the author

Artie Maupin

Artie Maupin is from Southeast Missouri and has an extreme passion for anything diesel. He loves drag racing of all kinds, as well as sled pulling competitions.
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