‘Free Spirit’ rolls into MC&E

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“Free Spirit,” as seen on Country Music Television’s “Trick My Truck,” will be on display at the 2006 ATA Management Conference & Exhibition (MC&E), to be held Oct. 29-31 in Grapevine, Texas. Each week on “Trick My Truck,” the Chrome Shop Mafia — a team of big-rig mechanics — “steals” the truck of a lucky driver and takes it on their shop to be rebuilt to better-than-new condition, polished to perfection and customized.

Among this year’s winners was Darlene Swift, who will bring her rig, “Free Spirit,” to Grapevine to share her truck’s spectacular transformation with MC&E attendees. Bryan and Ryno, two of the ringleaders of the Chrome Shop Mafia, will appear at the Exhibit Hall Grand Opening to explain how they added new leather couches, a custom paint job, hardwood floors, a flatscreen TV – and a dog shower for Roper, Swift’s canine traveling companion.

Swift hauls refrigerated goods cross-country for Wayne Baker Trucking of Taylor Ridge, Ill., and – with nearly 1 million miles on the log – her rig needed some serious work. Michelin donated new, top-of-the-line tires; Eaton presented her with a new transmission; and Detroit Diesel and its subsidiary, Detroit Diesel Remanufacturing, pitched in on Swift’s behalf and donated a completely overhauled Series 60 engine.

The completely refurbished 2000 Freightliner Classic will be on display in Booth 136, with special appearances by Swift during exhibit hours. Bryan and Ryno will appear at the Exhibit Hall Grand Opening on Sunday, Oct., 29 in Booth 141. Also on display in the exhibit hall will be Wayne Baker’s refurbished 2002 Peterbilt.