Trey Myers started his career in monster trucks through Mike Vaters of Black Stallion, working his way through the ranks of being a crew member until getting a chance to drive Vaters’ Battle Kat tank. After an injury to Vaters put Myers into driving duty in Black Stallion, Myers had his chance. After Vaters recovered, the Iron Warrior truck came into Team Black Stallion’s possession through a lease with the owner, Glenn Bowlin. Trey was kind enough to sit down with us for an interview; we thank him for his time.
Robert Haught – What can you tell us about the Iron Warrior and the upcoming winter season?
Trey Myers – Well, we don’t have anything confirmed yet. We’ve done 10 shows with it this year so far (as of the beginning of October). We started up with a tour in Canada where we did three shows right off the bat with it (Vaters and Myers leased it from Bowlin for the rest of the calendar year). That was pretty wild. The very first show that I did in the truck was in Olympic Stadium in Montreal, and it was with ten of the best trucks out there–Bigfoot, Raminator, Rammunition, Black Stallion, Jim Koehler with Avenger, and several other trucks. It’s pretty intimidating when you’re trying to jump in a new truck that you’ve never driven before and compete with greats of the sport; that was intimidating to try and do. It was my very first show and I was going over school buses.
RH – You said that was your first time in Iron Warrior, but I understand you also took a few rides in Black Stallion.
TM – Oh yeah, I’ve been driving Black Stallion over the past two years off and on, especially last summer. I started driving in Lima, Ohio after Mike had injured himself. I did about half a dozen shows in a row there with Black Stallion, and I felt like I really started getting the feel for it. That’s also where I ended up getting my license. Mike originally had me out to drive the Battle Kat (Vaters’ racing tank). Three years ago we brought that back and did a three-show series for Special Events bringing the tanks back. Mike thought I did OK, so then he stuck me in his truck and it went really well. To be honest with you, we’re working on a new truck for Mike, and we had already started booking shows, planning on having both trucks out this year. It just didn’t work out. We’re spending a lot more time in research and development and the actual building of the truck (They are currently in the building stage). It’s just taking way longer than we expected, so we went ahead and picked up Glenn Bowlin’s Iron Warrior, and it’s working out really well for all of us. We’re already negotiating on getting it through the winter; I’m sure Glen will want to drive it some through the winter, but that’s where we’re at right now, working on last-minute details.
RH – That brings up an interesting situation. With three trucks assuming the new chassis is ready, what will happen during summer of next year, for example? What trucks will run under what name?
TM – The truck that is currently Black Stallion now will remain that way, and the new truck will actually have a different name on it, which we’re undecided on yet. We’re looking at different sponsors and we’d love to have a corporate name on it (laughs). We sort of have a name in mind along the Black Stallion theme; it’ll be Team Stallion’s truck. If things work out that way, we’ll keep the Iron Warrior, and I’d like to step up to the Black Stallion that we’re racing now. We’ve already got another driver in training, Tim Bee. He’s been a crew guy for us for several years now, and he’s real interested in driving, so we actually stuck him in the Iron Warrior at a show in Parkersburg, West Virginia, and he did a really good job and picked up on things pretty quick. We’re looking forward to having Tim in a truck, me in Black Stallion, and Mike in the new race truck.
RH – What can you tell us about the new truck?
TM – We’re shooting for a really good race truck. We’re going to drop the center of gravity down; you’ve seen the trend with all the trucks like Grave Digger and everybody dropping the motor further and further in the chassis. That’s definitely what we’re shooting for.
RH – You mentioned people like yourself and Tim working your way up to driving. For those that don’t know your history, you’ve been with Mike awhile to get your chance.
TM – Yeah, I’ve been with Mike for about six years now. I bought an old leaf spring chassis because I wanted a nice show truck, just something to enjoy. I needed some tires and rims and contacted Mike. He had a set of old heavyweight rims that are outdated. I got to joking with Mike that I wanted to tag along and see how the pros did it (they had met once before through mutual friends), and Mike said, “Sure, come along!” That’s what I have to say to the guys that are out there on the web sites and everything that really want to get into it. Your biggest thing is just talking to a team. Don’t jump right ahead and say, “Look man, I want you to put me in a truck; you’re gonna make me your next superstar.” All you have to do is hook up with a team and tag along. You might have to sweep the floor in the shop or change the tires on the trucks for quite awhile, but that’s where it all begins. You just start out on the bottom.
Even guys that come into this sport and have good prior knowledge still have to work their way up through a team. It’s still very rare today for someone to come and jump right into being a driver. It’s been a three-year process for me, going from the Battle Kat tank to driving Black Stallion part time to driving Iron Warrior full time. As far as our team goes, we’re looking at expanding it even more. That’s the key. You have to find a team that needs people; you aren’t gonna be a millionaire starting off as a crew guy either. You have to keep believing in it though, because if you believe in working on one of these teams and you really want to do it, anything’s possible.
RH – That was an excellent point I wanted to illustrate. You had to work your way up and you’ve proven that it can work out well for someone with the desire to do it, but it’s not easy.
TM – Definitely. You’re on the road a long time and it’s hard, but it’s also a lot of fun. There’s so many benefits to doing this sort of thing. The whole monster truck community, once you start working on a team…we’re a really tight-knit family. We may not race with the same guys every week, but we know a majority of the teams out there, and we’re all friends. We wouldn’t be out here doing this if it was just about the money, the bragging rights, or things like that. It all boils down to your friendships that you make and the fans you meet…they make it all worth it in the end.
Thanks go out to Trey Myers and Team Iron Warrior – Black Stallion for their time and support.