Truckfest attracts Ice Road Truckers stars

Ice road Truckers star Lisa Kelly. Picture: contributed
Ice road Truckers star Lisa Kelly. Picture: contributed
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They’ve tackled narrow, treacherous roads, minus 35C temperatures and the prospect of hauling tonnes of cargo hundreds of miles over frozen rivers and lakes.

And now, the stars of TV’s Ice Road Truckers are coming to Edinburgh as part of Truckfest Scotland, which takes place at the Royal Highland Centre this weekend.

Lisa Kelly and Todd Dewey, two of the show’s drivers, will be among the star attractions, performing a number of challenges in the main arena and greeting fans across both days of the event.

The challenges include a time-trial event in left-hand drive vehicles – a major test considering the differences from the right-hand drive trucks the pair are used to.

The series, which features on the History channel in the UK, follows the working lives of a group of truckers as they transport cargo across dangerous terrain.

Lisa has been a part of the show for six of its nine seasons – including two series of spin-off IRT: Deadliest Roads, where she drove on some of the most dangerous roads in the Himalayas and South America – while Todd became a full-time cast member during season eight.

Lisa, who was the first woman to be featured on the show, said she was looking forward to the weekend.

“I genuinely love the UK,” she said. “Truckfest has always been my favourite event to go to; I’ve missed seeing old friends and look forward to meeting new ones.”

Truck drivers and fans alike are coming from all over the country to be part of the weekend, which is often described as “Glastonbury for truck drivers”.

More than 40,000 people are expected to pass through the gates, with plenty of other events and attractions to keep the crowd entertained. The hugely popular monster truck, Swamp Thing – which has gone under previous names Dragon Slayer and Captain Insano – will also be ­performing in the main arena, bringing a car-crushing stunt show to Scotland for a second year.

However, trucks aren’t the only vehicle providing thrills – there’s also two-wheeled action as stuntman Jason Smyth stars in his gravity-defying show.

It also offers the opportunity for local trucking businesses to exhibit their fleet, with a number of awards given for the best-kept vehicles, the best vintage truck and the best customised truck.

The event is now in its 34th year and is expected to feature more than 2500 vehicles.

The Edinburgh show is the third stop on an eight-date tour across the UK, which started in Peterborough in May.

It has a reputation for attracting star-studded guests, with former Coronation Street actress Michelle Keegan attending the festival in 2014.

Tickets are available from www.truckfest.co.uk, with under-fives being able to attend for free.