Conversations with Big Rich

The Original Mr. Maxxis, Creighton King on Episode 11

June 18, 2020 Guest Creighton King Season 1 Episode 11
Conversations with Big Rich
The Original Mr. Maxxis, Creighton King on Episode 11
Chapters
Conversations with Big Rich
The Original Mr. Maxxis, Creighton King on Episode 11
Jun 18, 2020 Season 1 Episode 11
Guest Creighton King

Mr. Maxxis, himself, joins us this week – Creighton King – the founder of Griplock Ties and former tire guy shares a lot of insight regarding sponsorship, new business and how a Jeep started it all.  Be sure to tune in and enjoy the conversation.  Creighton has a special offer at the end.

 

3:08 – Christmas Day surprise.

12:20 – How a Jeep saved my life…

17:54 – Mr. Maxxis is born

27:31 – We are not an “orange wannabe tire company”

38:21 – how three Mormons from Utah scored 12 quarts of moonshine for their sponsor

48:22 – What it’s like to be the Tire Czar

57:56 –The origination of GripLock Ties

1:14:51– Creighton’s life advice…Racing makes you a better man…

 

So great to hear Creighton doing so well, and don’t miss his special offer.  FREE SHIPPING on Griplock Ties by using the code BIGRICH at checkout.  www.griplockties.com 

 

We want to thank our sponsors Maxxis Tires and 4Low Magazine.

www.maxxis.com

www.4lowmagazine.com 

Be sure to listen on your favorite podcast app.

Support the show (https://www.buymeacoffee.com/BigRich)

Show Notes Transcript

Mr. Maxxis, himself, joins us this week – Creighton King – the founder of Griplock Ties and former tire guy shares a lot of insight regarding sponsorship, new business and how a Jeep started it all.  Be sure to tune in and enjoy the conversation.  Creighton has a special offer at the end.

 

3:08 – Christmas Day surprise.

12:20 – How a Jeep saved my life…

17:54 – Mr. Maxxis is born

27:31 – We are not an “orange wannabe tire company”

38:21 – how three Mormons from Utah scored 12 quarts of moonshine for their sponsor

48:22 – What it’s like to be the Tire Czar

57:56 –The origination of GripLock Ties

1:14:51– Creighton’s life advice…Racing makes you a better man…

 

So great to hear Creighton doing so well, and don’t miss his special offer.  FREE SHIPPING on Griplock Ties by using the code BIGRICH at checkout.  www.griplockties.com 

 

We want to thank our sponsors Maxxis Tires and 4Low Magazine.

www.maxxis.com

www.4lowmagazine.com 

Be sure to listen on your favorite podcast app.

Support the show (https://www.buymeacoffee.com/BigRich)

Big Rich Klein:  
Welcome to the Big Rich show. This podcast will focus on conversations with friends and acquaintances within the four-wheel drive industry. Many of the people that I will be interviewing you may know the name. You may know some of the history, but let's get in depth with these people and find out what truly makes them a 4wheel drive enthusiast. So now is the time to sit back, grab a cold one and enjoy our conversation. 

Whether you're crawling the red rocks of Moab or hauling your toys to the trail. Maxxis has the tires you can trust for performance and durability. Four wheels or two Maxxis tires are the choice of champions because they know that whether for work, or play, for fun, or competition. Maxxis tires deliver. Choose Maxxis. Tread victoriously. 

Why should you read 4Low magazine? Because 4 Low Magazine is about your lifestyle. The four-wheel drive adventure lifestyle that we all enjoy. Rock crawling, trail riding, event coverage, vehicle builds and do-it-yourself tech, all in a beautifully presented package. You won't find 4low on the newsstand rack, so subscribe today and have it delivered to you.  

Thanks for joining us today, we are going to be interviewing none other than Creighton King now known as Mr. Griplock ties, but previously known in the rock crawling world as Mr. Maxxis.. So, Creighton King. It's so great to have you onboard here with Conversations with Big Rich and talking about the history of rock sports from your perspective and rock crawling and trail wheeling and all that kind of stuff. In general. Now known as Mr. Griplock Ties. You had the title as Mr. Maxxis for a long time, and I keep it just for fun. There you go. And, I did talk to, to Brad Williams the other day, and he agreed to be, to be interviewed at some point, but he said get Creighton on first. So, you know, 

 

Creighton King: He can correct all my stuff now. 

 

Big Rich Klein: No, it was nothing like that. So, anyway, Creighton, good to have you here. Let's let's talk about the beginning. Where did, where did you grow up and, how did you eventually get involved with, off-road. 

 

Creighton King: So for me, I grew up in Utah and the Salt Lake Valley and, Jeeps are just always a part of our life. So my dad always wanted a Jeep and I think he got a 78, CJ7. He was trying to find a CJ7. So, you know, we could, okay. Mom and him in the front and three kids on the back seat and two behind that. So there were six kids. He always wanted a Scrambler, but those are hard to find back in the day. so we had that Jeep, fun part in 90, in 85. My dad started borrowing a car from my brother-in-law, from his, from his brother in, just for Christmas, Dad surprises us on Christmas day with a brand new CJ7, I guess he had had it for about a month, but he was hiding it from us. So that was our Christmas. 

 

Creighton King: Dad got a new Jeep, brand new off the showroom floor. it came with these crappy tires on it and we thought we would just drive off and go four-wheeling through a field and promptly got stuck. Yeah, Christmas day, sunk it up to the axles. And that's when we discovered we needed bigger tires, you know, so we had that Jeep and then in 86, they were going to quit making the, the CJ. And, we didn't, we didn't know what they were going to have. And my mom wanted a CJ7 too. So dad bought an 86 red and it was a, it was great. So growing up, we had two Jeeps. So mom and dad, six kids, two Jeeps, and we would travel across the country and we took two Jeeps. So Saturday afternoons or Sunday after church, we would go Jeeping. It was great. We got this map, about all these trails along the Wasatch front. 

 

Creighton King: And all of these maps were published before all the Greenies started, shut down all the trails. And so we looked at the map and we were like, look, we can ride along the Ridgeline all the way from Logan clear to Provo on all these Jeep trails. And we would go to trail after trail, after trail and they were all closed. And that's what really started getting me fired up about land use because these awesome trails, they were just arbitrarily closed. You know, I have bad knees and I, I couldn't hike them so places you can't go closed up. So Jeeps were just a part of me, young, you know, started me politically. Also at that younger age, I'm trying to keep trails open. Easter Jeep, Safari to us every year was driving into Jeep Safari like the night, the night before. And we would, wake up in the campground there by the, by the river, have the pancake Boy scout breakfast, and then find a trail to go on. 

 

Creighton King: That was yeah, 10 years old at that point, maybe younger and so camping and Jeeping and Jeep trails and getting stuck out in, in the middle of a nowhere and having to dig the Jeep out and finding wood to put under it. And, it was just a great time with my dad and shooting guns and guns and Jeeps and airplanes came about that same time. And it was just, it was great. I later went on a, on an LDS mission to Florida. No, before that I was really into Volkswagens. I had a Volkswagen boss with big speakers and those all got stolen. It was major disappointment. So I came home from my mission and I didn't have a car. The Jeep Safari was coming up. It came on the middle of March and dad's like, well, you need to come Jeep Safari. 

 

Creighton King: And I'm like, I don’t have a car. And he says, look, if you buy a Jeep, I’ll co-sign on it for you. So, so I bought a, we bought this Jeep right here, so it's a, it's an 83, CJ seven, 4.2 liter bought this and we were going to Jeep Safari. That was the plan with it. I got it. The day before we went to Jeep Safari, you know, unfortunately we, didn't never made it to Moab that year. 

Big Rich Klein: Are you, are you wearing a tie in that or is that just the harness? 

Creighton King: No, I was wearing a suit and tie. This is on a, the reason I'm wearing that is because I actually, I proposed to my wife using this Jeep. So we were, it was in May and, I was just smitten with my wife, Tonya, so she's just awesome. And we would go Jeeping with our buddies about behind the B in Bountiful, we went up there, and there's this pretty field with, with flowers. 

 

Creighton King: And I took her up there and I like, Hey, let's just go sit over here. And I proposed to her right there and Mmm, we took this picture. My buddy took, was a  photo guy and he's like, Oh, let's take some pictures for your engagement. And so that's what I said. So I still have this Jeep it's it's outside of my house. So because the one that I ended up doing competition rock crawling with was that Jeep, so I just, I had the Jeep, it was great. You know, one quick story, my we're going to go to that first Jeep Safari. And my sister was 16 and she had her friend in the back in the Jeep and they were driving down before us in my mom's red 86, CJ. And this is a 95. And, unfortunately just after Green River and before the turn off to Moab, they ran off the road and, and, she was ejected and died. 

 

Creighton King: Just a tragedy. for family, you know, that Jeeps are, they're not the safest thing to drive, you know, necessarily, you know, they've just been a part of my family's life. Jeeps have always been. So, so, after we got married, I started, I ended up doing competition, rock crawling. And the reason that happened is my wife was driving the Jeep to work one day, and she got run off the road and hit a sign, which bent the spring. Well, if you're gonna bend the spring, well, then you got to put a lift on it. Right?  So you've got to put a lift on it and then you've got to do bigger tires. Well, then we had 'em I got involved with a Jeep SLC list. And you, it was an email list, you know, Brett Davis and, you know, Carl Whitmore and Braden Camp and the Utah guys were on there. 

 

Creighton King: Craig Stumph, well, we started talking Jeeping and, I ended up changing the transmission in my Jeep and making it better and building stuff in the garage, tore it all apart before long, it was frame off. He just kept working on it and it was fun. I read every magazine and, you know, I'd go to the store and there'd be JP’s and Four Wheeler and five or six magazines every month. I just really dove into it. And it was, it was just fantastic. I loved, I love working on my Jeep. I loved, I had Jeep friends. That was great. And I'm still friends with guys like, you know, Braden Camp and, and Carl Whitmore, you know, their kids go to school with my kids. So, you know, we all live about the same area. So yeah. Before long, you know, ARCA started, you know, you saw some of the first videos and you're like, man, that's cool. 

 

Creighton King: Let's do that. And we would, before that, we were, you know, going up, Pittsburgh Lake, up American Fork Canyon, Jeep trails in Utah, going to Moab, just trying to make my Jeep more capable, bouncing around in it, just me and my wife. And it was a lot of fun. Rock crawling started happening and there was just no way I can afford to do ARCA. 

Big Rich Klein: So, so when did, what was the first event you went to go see?

 Creighton King: I never went to an ARCA event. I never went to one. I just saw the videos. I would buy the videos and, and there was talk about, you know, let's do a Utah rock crawling series. So UROC was originally Utah. 

Big Rich Klein: Well, I know. Yeah. I know because I was the club president in Cedar City, Utah.  Yeah. I was the club president in Cedar City, Utah, and a friend of mine who was the vice president was Dave Burling. And we were approached by the Utah Summer Games about putting on an event, you know, putting on an event, a rock crawling event there at Three Peaks as part of the summer games. No. Well, before that happened, I had been working with Ranch as the club and got him in to Cedar City, had been helping him gather all of his judges and stuff. A lot of those guys out of St. George, a Milt Thompson and a bunch of people that help him out. And I was friends with Craig Stumph because he was in Delta yeah. With his club. And we, you know, a couple of times a year we'd get together and they wheel with us, or we wheeled with them, got in Cedar or we'd go up there to said the Delta area where they wheeled. And so I moved, I ended up moving back to California and got ready to start CalRocs. And Dave ended up spotting for Craig Stumph. So when they were talking on the way to one of the ARCA events, I believe it was an ARCA event. This is from remembering this from the time, of course, I'd have to talk to Craig and get all the details, but they coined came up and started using the name. You know, Craig says, well, let's start an event series. And he did. And Dave helped him out a little bit to start with, and then Dave moved off to Florida or something. I forget what all the whole thing was, but Craig continued with a UROC and yeah, it was Utah, the Utah association. 

 

Creighton King: Well, yeah, we, we talked about a lot of it on the Jeep SLC list and we would get together at the sandwich places and a whole bunch of Jeeps would show up for lunch. And, I was at one of those when a tornado tore down our building in Salt Lake. So Jeep saved my life. They really did. So I was taking a communications class at the Salt Lake Community College at the time, and we needed to create forms and communication stuff. So I actually created, I wrote up the rules and scorecards and entry forms and created all these forms to start up UROC, as a college project. And then I had to test out the form. So we put on the first UROC unofficial event at, mini Moab ditches on the, this is the West side of Utah Lake. And there were about 10 of us there and we had five or six judges and we set up all these cones, but we couldn't afford cones. They're actually expensive. So I got those little flags that identify where you put a sprinkler. Yup. I got that. And a little piece of foam and I stuck it in it. And those were the cones. And we laid out the courses and that we all had our score sheets and you know, I adjusted the score sheets is all part of the college program. And so when they had the first official event, I sent all that over to, to Craig and, and they, they published it. So, and, and used it. And when they had that first competition in Cedar City, that was the first competition I've ever been to 

 

Big Rich Klein: Was that was the first event there or down in snow Canyon. 

 

Creighton King: It was in, it was at Three Peaks, 

 

Big Rich Klein: Was it ?

 

Creighton King: Yeah, it was Three Peaks and Ranch, Ranch came and competed in it. And I beat Ranch by 12 points. Yeah. So that was great. That's that's my one claim to fame is I know, from what I remember, that was, that was our first one. You know, it was, it was a lot of fun, you know, there are a lot of guys, I drove my Jeep there, got a hotel room. I took off my front bumper, the doors, the top, the rear tire spare carrier, and left it all in the hotel room and drove out Three Peaks. And, it was, it was great. We competed. And then I, then I sent the engine through the radiator on day two, had to find a trailer to tow it home, but I drove my Jeep to most events for the first, for the first couple of years. So I drove it to Farmington. I drove it to, go to the Super Crawl. So, I drove it to a Vernal, you know, we had events there, but yeah, I was a college student. I didn't have money to be doing this. I didn't have a truck to pull stuff. Now, Brett Davis was my spotter and he was a, yeah, he had a truck and a trailer. So that's how he became my spotter. And plus he could pull really good to have in a spotter. 

Big Rich Klein: That’s good to have in a spotter.

Creighton King: And he was, he was great. You know, we, I remember that first one, we were dropping off and, and, climb something and he was the spotter strap, ran through the front, onto the ground. So he ran out through the windshield, reach down and grab the strap and pull it back up. So he didn't have to touch the ground during a spotter ride. Yeah. During the spotter ride. Yeah. Because it was, you know, he had the points advantage for doing it, so, right. Yeah. It was, that was fun. That was, that was, and then I was hooked at that point, which, you know, I quit golf, you know, that's a good thing. My daughter is now in the high school golf team. So I'm having to play more of it. 

Big Rich Klein: So that's good. That's a good sport. That's a good thing to do with, with kids. 

 

16:25 Creighton King: For sure. One thing I wanted to cover was sponsorship. So this is, this is my Jeep right here. I had a Stout Appliance and Carpet on here in a magnet panel. At the time I worked at a wholesale floor covering place and the wholesale floorcovering place. I knew a lot of the Ogden’s Carpet Outlets and carpet places. So entry fees were about 300 bucks. So if I could get $500, I was really set. So I would go to I'd talk to the local carpet places and give a sponsorship for like 500 bucks. And I would take care of their signs and the graphics put on the car. Then I would print out sheets. I print out a sheet of coupon, whatever their logo with, you know, a coupon code on there, you know, UROC or whatever. So they would go in and they, people would, buy carpet, they've got sales. 

 

Creighton King: So once I started doing that, I always had a sponsor from a carpet place. So, you know, I knew that I'd never get big money, but if I could cover my expenses, it was great. And, know, eventually I got a, I got some tires from Goodyear then, Jeff Cummings from, BF Goodrich picked me up, well, I got to set up BF Goodrich tires the next season. And that was pretty cool. And then by then my stock body, CJ wasn't competitive anymore. And I knew that I wasn't going to be picked up again by BF Goodrich. So I was looking for additional tire companies and that's about time, the Maxxis deal they came around. So, 

 

Big Rich Klein: And how did you, Brad says something that, how did you fall into, into getting the whole, you know, Maxxis thing going 

 

Creighton King: So, Craig Stumph, I was talking to Craig, we used to talk all the time and he had been at SEMA and he had approached Maxxis, but they were looking to get on some cars. And so they had, there was me and Chris Holly that had, he had a Bronco and so Maxxis just sponsored us and it was pretty big. I got 10 sets of tires and 750 bucks. And my entry fees paid for it was pretty sweet deal. And so they said, well, what about, you know, contingency So I suggest that. I said, well, you know, the top guys right now is BF Goodrich Goodyear. So if you want people to run your stuff, you need to have a contingency that pays not just the top two or three. So I get them to pay through the top 10, which worked good for me because I was close to that. 

 

Creighton King: And, you know, at the time we were getting like 50 cars, you know, and there was one class. So that was, that was pretty big. What I did is I, I would run the tires and I would run them in and I'd sit there and do burnouts with them and started trying to grind it off the leading edge and with my flap wheel. And, I'd run them. And then I made a deal with guys like Brian Kemp and Carl and the other guys too, to run my takeoff. So, and the deal was is you run my takeoffs and I'll give them to you, but you only get half the contingency. So I don't think Brad knows this, but you know, I wasn't under contract. So it's like, Hey, I'll give you a set of tires. You'd give me half the contingency. And so it was pretty sweet because I remember Braden or Carl, one of the guys came in and top five and, I got a thousand bucks, out of it 

 

Creighton King: So it was great for me. And so I picked up other guys and, you know, two or three other guys doing that, then Craig was, Craig was out, he sold to Mark and Mike and those guys. And so Craig wanted to be competing and Craig was wanting to put together the rockstars. So I helped him with that. Like we printed out these, yeah, these big sponsor books and we want it to be really cool because when you go to SEMA, you know, everybody hands out, all these, no paper books. And most of the time they go on to the trash, they really do. They, the guys don't want to take them home. So we wanted to make something so Epic that nobody would throw it away. And I think Brad had this in his office for years and years. So I got a, I made them. And so it was a metal clip. And, and then the front cover was, slate tile, like a 12 by 12 slate tile. We cut it down and we had the rockstars logo, water jetted into the top, and then it was all this, welded thing you'd flip it over. And it was massive. I think we only made 20 of them or something. 

 

Big Rich Klein: Well, the amount of weight that they must have been. 

Creighton King: Yeah, they were heavy. So when Craig carried them around and, you know, he got us Eaton Lockers and a bunch of, okay, a bunch of others sponsors and now back then we all thought we were going to be the next NASCAR. Right. You know, now this is going to be the biggest thing ever. Yeah. It wasn't, it was awesome. I love it. But you know, it's not going to be NASCAR. It took us awhile to realize that, but I still have fantastic time. So we put together that team and I kinda, I kept grabbing guys with Maxxis for tires and we put a bunch of guys on the tires. And, at the time my wife and I were trying to have kids and we were unable to have kids and we were going to adopt at the end of the year, I looked at how much sponsorship, money I had and I needed to, I need 10 grand to adopt and I'm like, no, what's more important. And so I, I told Brad Williams, I said, look, I can't, you know, I need 15 grand if I'm going to do this. Cause that was right. When they were going to have all these different series and run all over. And without that, I can't do it. I really need to concentrate on my family. And, I was working as an accountant at a life insurance place at the time, the last year, last couple of months of college. And I said, look, I'll, you know, I can't do it. Brad's like, well, we need you, will you work for us And I said, I mean, sales. I said, I guess I could do sales. I've done sales. And he goes, no, we need a marketing guy. And at the time Mike Farmer was doing stuff for the motorcycle department. Brad wanted somebody who knew rock crawling. 

 

Creighton King: And that was, and that was me. And, and we tried to do a deal and couldn't get it done with the paperwork, you know, this Rich, I mean, it's tough to get things through corporate. I started going to events with Craig as Craig’s spotter in rock crawling, and we're kind of building up the rockstar name and Brad Williams would come and I'd get the crowd all hyped up throw out t-shirts and, you know, promote Maxxis at the events. And Brad thought I was doing a great job. And eventually we got a contract done. It took way longer than I thought I ended up quitting my accounting job because it sucked. Then I rebuilt an airplane for awhile. And I got a job with Ferguson selling plumbing. I was waiting until that contract with Maxxis was done and the money was in the bank. And that was the day I quit the same day. They offered me to run my own store for Ferguson. And, I went to, I got the truck on a Monday and I took it to wrap place and they got done on Thursday. And the very first event I showed up to as Mr. Maxxis was your event in Congress, Arizona. And it rained and it rained. And Bob Rogge slid in the mud and tore up his chest. Yeah. 

 

Big Rich Klein: Oh, that was in Globe, Arizona. That's when that's, when everybody got buried, but we had you closest to the, to the spectator entrance and get out. 

 

Creighton King: Yeah. I had a pretty, I had a pretty good spot there. I didn't get stuck. I mean, that truck was awesome. 

 

Big Rich Klein: Everybody, everybody else got stuck. We, I think we spent all Sunday night and into Monday morning getting people out of that parking lot. Yeah. 

 

Creighton King: Cause I was, I was, I didn't have a problem and I bailed on you. Sorry about that. 

 

Big Rich Klein: No, no, no, no. It's all good. We needed you to move so that we could tow everybody else out without running in to you because that, that parking lot up there, it was all fill. And while it felt really secure with the like nine inches of rain, we got that Friday night that Friday, it wasn't so secure. Yeah. Softened up quite a bit. 

 

Creighton King: That was my first event as Mr. Maxxis, It was, it was pretty cool. So 

 

Big Rich Klein: That was quite the event. And then one of the, one of the events I remember you coming up to, you came all the way up to Goldendale Washington. That was a long haul for you. 

 

Creighton King: Well, that was closer. I was doing about, 50,000 miles a year, 40 to 50,000 miles a year on the truck. I would run. I remember times when we were doing the OP drift events where I would go to California. One time I went to California, San Diego for a torque event, went to wall, New Jersey. And then I went back, I think, to Goldendale and I went back to Washington and then I went somewhere back East to Crandon or something. We originally were just going to do rock crawling events. but we're trying to fill up the schedule and it just continued to grow and grow. I was doing, you know, the whole country and doing 40 plus events a year now for, for 10 years. And it was, 

 

Big Rich Klein: 

 

Creighton King: It was a lot of fun and a lot of miles and, was a financial disaster in the end, you know, fuel prices were going up and, you know, that's right when Katrina hit and I originally thought fuel was going to be a buck 56 and it was soon $5. And it just created a big, big hole that was tough to get out of. 

 

Creighton King: It was such a great kind of rock crawling family and race family that I had, you know, it was like everywhere you showed up, you know, you had friends, some of them, you just had friends because they thought they could get something out of you. There were some real fake sponsor friend people, you know, when you could see it happening, you know, you can see guys that, you know, in the early days, Facebook had friend yet and immediately hit you up for sponsorship. And it's like, you know, but you know, and that's, that was my job is to field sponsorship stuff.. We put together some, you know, some really big deals, you know, pick up guys like Johnny Greaves or, or, Brian Deegan. now some of the, a short course stuff was, it was big, you know, and in rock sports when I pick it up, Shannon Campbell, I mean, that was, that was pretty Epic. 

 

Creighton King: Oh, Shannon Campbell and, and really growing. And one thing that I'd like to share one story was, it's kinda, my first year was at first kind of half year I was with Maxxis. So we were at a race at Three Peaks, in Three Peaks down there in Cedar City, and it was a UROC event. And, Dean Bulloch won the event. And, it was the first time that, one of our guys got on the podium, Brad Williams was there and Jeff Cummings was there from BF Goodrich and, and, Dean Bulloch got up there and he said, you know, we're, we're the best. And we're not some orange wannabe tire company is the way he said it, that orange wannabe tire company. And I looked at Brad and Brad Williams, you could just see he was fired up. 

 

Creighton King: That was the moment that I really think that Brad decided that we were going to dominate rock sports because we, it was, it was a bad move on Dean Bullock's part to say that because, you know, after that, we really started growing, you know, and there was a time when, you know, Maxxis was, you know, we're clearing the podiums, we're clearing the podiums that we had, you know, the top guys and the Bruce Zellers and, and, you know, we never got Tracy Jordan. but we were, we were winning a lot of races and, it was, it was pretty cool. It was kind of our thing to lose sad that I think Maxxis has fallen off somewhat in there in their resolve. I mean, we need another orange, wannabe tire company, in the moment, but, no, I'm no longer with Maxxis and they can do what they want, but we had a, we had a great, a great run and it was really cool to develop tires, you know, we're playing with compounds and yeah. 

 

Creighton King: The Trepador tire. And we came out with that and, trying to get the right sizes. And it was, it was, it was really cool, you know, early days it was, they were creepy crawlers, right Yeah. The first ones I had were the Mudzillas. Wow. Yeah. I had the Mudzillas. Those were pretty cool, but they looked a lot like the Mickey Thompson. And so they were kind of confusing and whether the Mudzilla or the Mickey Thompson came out first. If you talk to Mickey Thompson, they say one thing, but evidence shows something else. Mudzilla was out first, Mickey Thompson copied it. And then no, they threw a hissy fit about it because we haven't been in the U S market with that tire yet. And know they develop the creepy crawler. So, and the creepy was a, is a great tire, you know, especially you need to wear it in a little bit, like any, like any rock crawling tire. 

 

Creighton King: And then we played with a lot of compounds and, no, I remember doing tire tests with, you know, multiple compounds and try to find the ones that would really stick and do well. And I think we, we really had it, you know, now the Trepador is, you know, hashtag #trepadorsaremadeforwinning, you know, that's what they do. They've got a tough sidewall and it's a great tire. And, you know, I'm proud to have been part of that development because it's an awesome tire, you know, BF Goodrich, you know, they're red label and they have the bigger names. A lot of them, you know, they had, they had the Tracy Jordans and they had the Shannon Campbell's and they had all those guys, you know, sorry, Nate, I, or Jeff, I don't think it's a superior product. I think the BF Goodrich red label. Just have the right names on it. You know, it's a great tire. If you want to poke a whole rock through the side of it, but it's a, you know, and if you have the right condition where it's just, you know, straight up with one wall, sometimes it could be a little better than the Trepador, but you add some, you know, some other conditions in there and, and the Trepador was clearly superior. So 

 

Big Rich Klein: As, as a course designer, as a course designer, having done this now for 20 years, I get a chance to see how different tires perform on buggies nowadays that are very similar. You know, most of the unlimited rigs out there are really, really close. You know, a lot of it is because Jesse Haines has been building most of them and he runs the treps and then you've got, you know, Cody and, and Jeff McKinley and others that are running the BFGs. Okay. I actually feel I can set a course to favor one tire or another. Yeah. Because there are characteristics that, that the tires perform better at, or don't perform better at my job as a course designer is to make sure that everything's overall at the end of the day, a level playing field, whether it's a way a vehicle is built, how much experience somebody has, or how, what their equipment is like. 

 

Big Rich Klein: It's interesting to do that. And then at the end of the day, an event, look back on it and say, yep. I knew that the Maxxis would, would out perform there, but you know, BFG had a, more of an advantage over here. I like to think that it's pretty close now setting that because of the way the scores go, nobody is blowing anybody out. No, of course, Tracy Jordan probably is, I'd say hands down, probably the best competitive rock crawler ever. And it's not because he was on BFGs. It was BFG had the wins because he was on them is what I believe. You know, every time he comes back out of retirement, he dominates. He's already an awesome driver. He really is. Yeah. Cody, Cody was giving  Jesse a hard time one day and he goes, yeah, get ready to get beat to Jesse online. And Jesse came back, goes, why is Tracy coming out of retirement 

 

Big Rich Klein: But you know that, you know, guys like Tracy and Joachim and you know, those guys are, there was some amazing driving that was going on. Yeah. And it's not just driving, it's, you know, building the right cars and taking the time rock crawling is like other racing. You've got to know what you're doing. And no, how many times did we see rich guys show up, buy a nice car and bring the biggest trailer and fail. Yes, no, he didn't have that time that like that a lot of these guys had. So it was it's rock crawling is it's an amazing sport. It really is. And it's kind of like golf in this aspect. Like if you play golf, you can watch golf. And you're like, that's cool. And rock crawling is a little bit like that, except you add horsepower into it. So the clips of the big climbs and stuff are awesome. 

 

Big Rich Klein: People get that, but the magic is in dodging the cone and three tire ruling and, you know, knowing, knowing this, knowing the sport. Yeah. And it's, it, it really does come down to strategy. a great example of that was Jeff McKinley, who was running around with, with Kevin Carroll and they were doing, you know, breaking all these big trails and, you know, fearless, you know, they, they knew what it took to get, get through an obstacle without cones. And then they came out to compete with cones. Yeah. And they were both in these big Red Dot.cars that barely fit. Cause they're in the 90 inch wheelbase with, you know, our cones are set at 101” and they started hitting the cones and Kevin was like, well, you need to widen the cones. And I said, why to give Tracy and, and Jesse more room to, you know, they could drive, you know, make U turns in between the cones. 

 

Big Rich Klein: And he goes, yeah, I guess you're right. Well, Jeff went the other way and said, okay, I'm going to build a car that fits. Yeah. You know, that that's a comp car and he did that. And he started winning and then he built a second car comp car. And last year he won enough of the events to where he ended up being the national champion because he won like all three events. He understood the strategy then, but the first year neither him or Kevin they'd come out and, you know, they were told the classic line, well, if you hit a bonus cone, it washes. So I always go for the bonuses because if you hit one of the cones, it washes. Yeah. Well, he got, I, one of the obstacles, he got 40’d out and he goes, but I, those cones I hit were bonus cones. So they wash. And I said, only when you finish the course. 

 

Creighton King: Hmm. 

 

Big Rich Klein: And he, cause he didn't understand the strategy. Yeah. You know, and, it bit him that time. You know, I I'm sure that some of the guys were sitting there laughing about it behind his back, but 

 

Creighton King: You know, I think some of the real game changers in, in rock sports, you know, some real iconic cars, you know, they came out, you know, when, well, Nelson built Tiny. And I remember in Farmington when it showed up and just walking around it, like, you know, it did look like it went to the moon. I mean, that's why it's called the moon buggy. I mean, it was just, it was so out of the box thinking, you know, the Volkswagen engine and, and rear mounted and all that stuff and, and watching it with, you know, I think there was some of the first guys that added weight to the front tires, you know, how do you keep the front down Well, you know, they’re full of leadshot. It was just amazing to see the progression that happened in the cars, in the, in that early time, you know, like some of the guys like, you know, Mike and Mark Peatty built that six Wheeler, they were going to run, but then you know, it, well, let's have a rule there's only four tires, you know, you know, the rules change quickly. 

 

Creighton King: You know, I'm seeing that in a, in a new sport right now in, in, in the aviation STOL stuff right now, things are changing quickly. You did that event with, with Doug down there, rock crawling was, it was really such a cool place to be at that time. And yeah, I met all kinds of people from around the, around the country, you know, one week you're in, yeah. You're in Congress and it's 105 degrees. And the next, in Congress, California, or where was that Cougar Buttes, could you be eight zillion degrees And we were in a refrigerated trailers and, you know, just trying not to die. And then you go to Jellico, Tennessee where, you know, there's 500 people in 473 big teeth, but you meet some really cool people. So you want to hear a fun story. All right. Here's a fun story. 

 

Creighton King: So, so a little background. So I'm Mormon. Okay. you know, I don't drink alcohol and, you know, I'm not the world's best Mormon, but I try, so me and me and Craig Stumph, also LDS and, we were back in Jellico Tennessee. You know, we had this sponsor, Tom, Tom Woods Drive Lines and Tom Woods ask Craig to find some moonshine. So we went, well, I, you know, to get a sponsor, I mean, I guess, you know, take care of your sponsor. He takes care of us. So we were, we were there and it was a huge event. I mean, there were so many people there. I think it was a UROC event at the time. It was one of the first East coast, you know, there's an East and a West and we were there and yeah, we had these, we had these team jerseys on, you know, and I was in a, an extra large, which did not look good. 

 

Creighton King: Really that's, you know, Maxxis only made jerseys for bike riders, not, not spotters, you know And, yeah, we had the tents and with Brad Williams there, and we had, we were pimping Maxxis and throwing out shirts and having a great time. And then we found out we needed to find some moonshine. So I asked, I asked the guy, you know, like, Hey, we need to find some moonshine. And everyone just like walks away. Like nobody's willing to admit about moonshine Well, takes a few minutes, one guy and another guy. And well, what are you looking for Where are you looking for it I didn't know anything about moonshine. I didn't know what, you know, Apple pie or peach cobbler or any of those moonshine things where, you know, all I knew was the Duke boys, you know, I know the Duke boys get caught with moonshine and they go to jail. 

 

Creighton King: Right. It's all I knew about moonshine is all from Dukes of Hazzard. So when we talked to this guy and he's like, you know, well, how much do we want to do this Look, I want one of those, I want one of those jerseys you have, man, I don't know. Those are pretty expensive way to pilot them. Those are, I don't know, those are, those are pretty pricey. We can't just really give those things away. And he's like, well, you know, I mean, that's really what we need. Alright. So we, you know, we said, look, you know, we'll, we'll, we'll do that. So we met him, we made it, we were going to go meet him down this road, down this Hill and up a creek And by the side of the highway and like some kind of set up to get killed, you know 

 

Creighton King: And, no, we, we got the Jeep back in, in the trailer and it was me and Craig and Mikey. And, and we were, we go to meet this guy at the end of the event and it's dark 30. By the time we get out of their events, used to go really long. There's so many competitors we pull off and go down the guidelines, didn't have a phone, we had flashlights. And we didn't know if we're going to get arrested or shot or robbed or what, what, you know, the guy comes out, we meet up, he loved that. Jersey was the greatest thing. And I think it's the, the cheapest, 12 quarts of shine and whatever we got yeah. We brought those all the way back to Utah. 

Big Rich Klein: So you, transported unstamped liquor across statelines, across a whole bunch of lines. 

 

Big Rich Klein: Yes. Unstamped liquor. Yeah. Oh yeah, yeah. Yeah. Like three Mormon guys in a truck with a whole bunch with a trunk full of illegal moonshine, you know, all so we could get Tom Woods Drive Lines cause they were the best. So that's a great story. Yeah. Yeah. It was a lot of fun. You know, I had another time, I brought a guy to help me in event and found out he brought weed. I fired him and left him in the Carolinas for back then. I mean, it could have taking my whole business away from me. Absolutely. Wasn't cool. 

Big Rich Klein: We were, we were in Baja, Shelley and I, and we'd stayed at Bob Rogge and his wife Paula's house and Gonzaga Bay. There was a guy there that, we call it, we nicknamed him Spicoli. Yeah. After you know the character in the movie. Yeah. And total stoner, worer like shorts, some flip flops and a tank top and carried a backpack. 

 

Big Rich Klein: Did he look like Hippy? One of Robby Flandro’s friends. 

Big Rich Klein: Yes. We go out, we're going to go to Coco's Corner. It's a pit. Yeah. And he goes, can I get a ride And I said, yes. And he grabs his backpack and he starts to get into the Jeep. And I said, but I can't have you bring any weed with you. Yeah. And he goes, Oh dude, you're killing me dude. And I'm like, no, you can't bring any weed. There are at least, there's at least one checkpoint military checkpoint between here and Coco's Corner. If we get stopped and they find the weed, we all go to jail. Yeah. I said, get the weed out. So he got the weed out of his backpack and he gave it to somebody else that was staying there at the campground. And I said, all right, now you can get the Jeep. So we got in the Jeep, we got out there, I got out to Coco's and we're standing around after about three hours and he comes up to me and he goes, dude, you're killing me, man. I'm like, I'm like, I'm really needed joint right now. You know It was just, here's what I'm thinking. Three hours. Oh, well, 

Creighton King: one of the things that I liked to be in the Maxxis guy was helping. Yeah. I tried to help everybody, you know, I had my tools and the welder. Mmm. And I remember one time we there's this guy in back East to have this, who's really dedicated to those green and yellow tractors. So he had his rock, crawler, green and yellow. And we went through like four different axles and eventually 

 

Creighton King: Ran out of axles for his Dana 44 front end. So we welded two axles together and, and then the other, we cut it and we welded that axle. And I guess you're in it for like two more years. I really, it was fun helping guys. No, I can't remember. I can't mention or remember how many people crashed inside the Maxxis Marriott. It was, you know, so many guys slept in there. I don't know if you slept in there, but 

 

Big Rich Klein: I slept in there during a KOH 

 

Creighton King: Yeah. Okay. Yeah. 

 

Big Rich Klein: Yeah. That's what I was supposed to get a motor home. I had it all set up and then, things didn't happen financially. Some money was supposed to come in and didn't come in. So I had to, I, and it was down there. One of those, the ones where it almost snowed and it was super cold and windy. And, Aaron Campbell was with me on that trip. 

 

Creighton King: Oh, he doesn't have enough socks that boy, 

 

Big Rich Klein: You know, I don't have enough. He didn't have enough clothes at all. 

 

Creighton King: Oh man. His feet. Sorry, Aaron. 

 

Big Rich Klein: In fact it was so cold. And then, Bo Neece showed up with his big class, a motor home, you know, and he goes, he goes, where are you staying Rich? And I said, I'm staying in the back of the Maxxis trailer. I I'm freezing my ass off. And he goes, he goes, well, why don't you move in with me And I said, okay, great. So I grabbed all my stuff and I didn't tell Aaron where I went. 

 

Creighton King: no. So you and the, you were saying in the front or in the back and the upper level in the penthouse suite. 

 

Big Rich Klein: I don't remember where I was at. I just know I was in the trailer and it was all, I was only there one night and it was cold as hell. I went and stayed in Bo Neece’s, a class, a motor home. But you had like the crew guys that were down there crewing for you. We're all in the cab. I know that. I think Aaron ended up staying in that, in the trailer, the rest of the weekend, which I'm sorry. Or the week. And I'm sorry about that. 

 

Creighton King: Love Aaron, but man, he's like, boy, Oh man. Yeah. his socks, he’d take them off. It was like, just leave your shoes on, man. Well, yeah, you know, I went there that King of the hammers, the very first one, well, not the first one, the first year, it was just, you know, 12 guys or whatever. But that second year when it was an event, they wanted me to sing the National Anthem cause sing the National Anthem. A lot of events just cause I didn't like hearing it recorded as much. I think somebody should sing it and I was willing to do it. And it was an honor. I was at the tour of California bike tour. I took a day off to run from San Louis Obispo down to King of the Hammers, sing the National Anthem, was there for the race, drove back to the next stop, which was somewhere else. But, that was cool. I got to be there. So it's really weird to have not been at King of the hammers. No, these last two years. So that's but man, it's so big. It's such a huge event. So 

 

Big Rich Klein: Yeah, it's, it's gotten, I don't want to say it's too big, but it's lost. It's lost its flavor that it had for so many years, you know, where you got to see everybody, you got to hang out with people that were likeminded. There are so many things that are going on now in a week down there this last year, we showed up on Tuesday and left Friday morning. 

 

Creighton King: Yeah. 

 

Big Rich Klein: You know, and stay out at Cody Waggoner's, you know, Lasertown and just handing out the magazine. I don't even, I don't participate anymore and help. Dave's got enough staff to do all that, that he certainly doesn't need this old man doing anything. 

 

Creighton King: The last time I went, I was the Tire Czar, Tire Nazi. Yeah, because I was no, I wasn't with a tire company at the time and I hadn't been with Maxxis and I hadn't done, you know, I was completely independent at that point. And so I, 

 

Creighton King: You know, I know where all the bodies are buried. You know, if you want to build a set of cheater tires, I, I probably figure it out. So I went and tested all the tires and made a spreadsheet and sent it to Dave. And you know, that whole tire rule there, it was frustrating because I think that Dave wrote the rules wrong. So I told him how to write them. And we had that meeting down there in Moab, like write the rules like this intended for highway use. And he didn't, he wrote DOT and it's like, okay, you put a DOT stamp on anything. So I mean, the Maxxis sticky Trepadors are DOT approved because it changes the import, you know, tire rules or I'm kind of a stickler on it. You know, it's really, it's, it's not impossible. I'm not saying it's easy, but it's kind of easy for a company to cheat tire rules. 

 

Creighton King: No, you can Nate take a DOT mold and you can make a sticky, rubber and put in it. Lots of companies have done it. You know, I would get every once in a while, a new engineer Maxxis just say, well, we could do that. And I'm like, yeah, we could, but we don't. No, we won't. No, I wouldn't stand for it. And we didn't need to, we were winning Pro-lite and stuff with it. No we're trying to stay legal. And that's one thing that the Maxxis the entire time I was there. We didn't cheat. We didn't cheat. We played by the rules. You know, I was a people really thought I was real asshole at times because I knew when guys were cheating. So I remember one time a, a T tire company built a special tire for one driver and he pulls out onto the, he was getting his butt kicked by us. 

 

Creighton King: Every, every race he pulls out on the track, I knew they were different before he even did the first lap. I walked over to their trailer and there was a girl there, Gina. And I said, you know, what's the deal. She ran in hot and hid, you know And unfortunately the series was sponsored by that tire company and they were just allowed to cheat for quite a while. So, and that's some of the, the dirtiness that exists in racing is unfortunately if you sponsor the series, you're allowed to cheat 

Big Rich Klein: well with a lot of series. I'd like, yeah. The one thing that I've always done with our marketing partners is I don't care if you're a marketing partner and you're a competitor. Or if you're the, the new guy that shows up, you know, it never rock crawl before I'm going to treat you the same way. 

 

Creighton King: Yeah. Mean even though, even though Maxxis was a sponsor, if you know, at the time we sponsored, you know, all the rock, well, we sponsored UROC and WE Rock until UROC. Mmm. Folded. But, okay. We never asked you to do any cheat to allow us to do an achievement. We never asked for any, any preference, you know, that's really all you've got is your integrity in the end. You know, there are other series that, you know, I had some real battles with those guys at Lucas oil in short course, they would just, you know, at one point I actually, you know, we threatened me and okay, pretty much all the other tire guys, except for one company that was doing the cheating, they, they were also the title sponsor of the event and they were cheating and we, everybody knew it. And when they were finally got caught and we said, look, you guys need to fix this for next time. 

 

Creighton King: We're leaving. And I vowed, we would leave. And we were the only company that packed up in the middle of the race and left. We drove out in the middle of the race. Doesn't make you any friends with the series, but you gotta make a stand at a certain point. Mmm. So absolutely that's not my favorite company, but well there some other companies that, that I have a lot of respect for like BF Goodrich, BF Goodrich, those guys, you know, I'd show up most races. I was the tire analysis guy, tire Groover, pick her out or guy, make sure the guys have lunch guy set up, you know, no we'd bust our butt. We went out there to win. You know, we had guys that came from Rock crawling sports to short course, like Marty Hart. Yeah. We, we just, we wanted to win and do the best we could. 

 

Creighton King: And we were a small crew and BF Goodrich had a lot more guys. Yeah. Engineers and marketing people and all that kind of stuff and a big crew and sometimes two trucks and all that, all that. And it was sure was fun to kick their butt. So that was, you know, when we would clean a podium, we did a, we did one event, you know, and Marty was part of it who came through rock sports. Yeah. We were like cleaning the podium and pro light and pro two and pro four. And we were, it was really great. You know, those are no, no bonus because 

 

Big Rich Klein: Of that, except Hey, that orange wannabe tire Company's kicking some ass. That was, that was pretty cool. So, Mmm. It takes a lot of dedication to do that 

Big Rich Klein: when I wrote the three classes, the rules for three classes. Cause I was the first organizer to put out three classes. Yeah. And we did unlimited, pro mod, and stock and I said 35, 37 and forties. Right. Cause that's what the, the range of tires were. It was all by sidewall designation. First. I did it, you know, well, it's got to fit within this 35 inch or 37. So the guys would show up with, you know, burned off tires that were, you know, or under size tires. Like you know, Interco, they'd say it's a 47, but it would measure 37 sidewall designation. Yeah. And I remember Jeff Cummings asking me going, well, why are you doing it that way 

 

Big Rich Klein: Why aren't you measuring it And I said, well, because it's easier if I just look at it then to walk away and you know, have to have this tool that I gotta use every single time. And then I got to go check again to make sure that, that, that, you know, while you're on course or after course, I said, if I just go by sidewall designation, then you know, I could look to say, okay, it still says 37. It still says 37 or 35, whatever. And he goes, well, what keeps me from making a 40 inch tire and putting 37 on it And I said, because I'm going to measure it. And if you Mark a tire at 40 and yeah, it's actually a 37, I'm going to call you a cheater. Yeah. I said, so don't do it. I still have my measuring tool. Don't do it. And he was like, okay, fair enough. You know, they, they never cheated, but he, he was throwing it out there. Like, you know, somebody might. Yeah. That's why I still have that measuring tool. Wow

Creighton King: Yeah. It was, when I switched to Maxxis, Jeff Cummings, Jack Jack was not happy with me. And Jack was Good ear. Yeah. 

 

Big Rich Klein: So I think Jack didn't like when I left for BF Goodrich and then Jeff didn't like it when I went to Maxxis, but then after a few years being the Maxxis guy, you know, I can really gain the respect for what those guys have done. You know, the Frank DeAngelo's, I've been in off-road sports forever. And you really, when you look at BF Goodrich, you really see their domination of Baja, where I think when you look at, at Maxxis, as you see rock sports is, is the Baja of, of Maxxis, 

 

Creighton King: You know, you know, BF Goodrich was born in Baja and we're really, you know, were born in, you know, Jellicoe and you know, and, you know, Goldendale and all those places, you know, were, go Maxxis were really, that's where we've made our, our stand at that point. And we did some other stuff, you know, then we started doing short course and we did drift and all that stuff. Cause you know, they had to keep me busy. So 

 

Big Rich Klein: Yeah. And then the Maxxis do Excel at longevity. You know, they, they hold up, they hold up better. But that's why that's one of the things that, that helps them outperform the other tire companies. And I'm not just talking about BFG, but because that sidewalls so stiff, they can get away with a 17 inch rim on a 42 inch tire, give that sidewall on a bigger footprint and still be able to, you know, to perform. 

 

Creighton King: Yeah. Usually you can usually work, you know, eventually wear out the tread on the Maxxis where on some of the others you were through the sidewall before you were out the tread. So legal disclaimer is that a no, as of last year, I actually got sponsored by Michelin for my airplane racing. So, you know, I have very good, but unfortunately they don't make a tire that fits we're working on that. 

 

Big Rich Klein: Let's talk about your newest endeavor Griplock. How did, how did that all come about 

 

Creighton King: So, Griplock Ties came about because, you know, I was a racer that did tires and so I tried to keep doing some race and I did, I did some of the, the XRRA type events. I was still the Maxxis guy. And then I did some short course stuff. I rented a buggy from, Mike van and who will and ran for almost two full seasons, loved it. But I got injured at an event. I was, well, I pulled this thumb off. I got caught in the steering wheel when I got hit by in the, in the gravel pit at Crandon. You know, when, when I told Brad Williams about that, I got hurt and I had one driver kind of, you know, I missed getting one tire ready one time and he complained. And so Brad said I couldn't race anymore. 

 

Creighton King: And I thought, well, can't tell him I can't race airplanes. So, so I started racing airplanes instead, cause they can't tell me I can't do that. And so I started, you know, take my airplane hobby into racing and you know, we've raced around the world with it. But I was working on my airplane one time and I was fixing running some wires along the engine Mount. And we've all seen where like a regular zip tie, you know, like regular zip tie that’s smooth, it just slides on stuff. Right. And it'll cut through the wires on an engine mount or actually cut through the paint and then it moves and the scratches, the paint, and then the paint wears off. And eventually it's just there JAG jiggle. And it'll actually cut through the steel on engine mount on an airplane. And it's not 120 wall like you have on a race car. 

 

Creighton King: It's .035 5/8. So three, five spin. So I wanted to, I was patting the wires. And one day I was, I ran out of the color that I wanted of electrical tape that was patented with some orange electrical tape on my orange airplane with the orange engine Mount. So I went over to Lowe's and I needed some orange tape. I'm like, why would I have orange tape here We have blue tape, you know, that's the other place has orange tape. And I said, well just give me the rubber line, zip ties. And so again, there was zip ties, but they weren't, nobody had, nobody had a zip tie with the rubber lining on it. the pads, the wire. So this, this creates a place for the wires to kind of sit in it, cushions it. And so I, I thought, Oh, that's pretty cool. 

 

Creighton King: I was thinking about it. And how do you stick rubber The nylon. They kind of figured that out in the tire business, trying to, well, especially with high heat and different things. So I understood some of that chemistry and I built my first prototypes here in my shop with a Dremell tool and a zip tie and a little tube of RTV. And I thought that's pretty cool. Now I realize that that didn't work because it didn't slide through, you know, we've got these little patented grooves and here's the rubber slides through it. I came up with grip lock ties, and I told a few guys about them, like Adrian Chenny was gonna help me fund it. And then I was talking to my rock crawling buddies, Mark, and Mike Peatty who had bought UROC, from Craig and, yeah, Ranch got involved. 

 

Creighton King: And at the time when I came up with this Ranch was working for Mike and Mark with their company Prodigy Engineering. And they got started that company building electric vehicles because they built a six wheel rock crawler. They weren't able to run in UROC So they bought the series. Eventually those guys were into airplanes I was into airplanes. So I was, I was buddies with them and it was a, we were at Oshkosh to the big air show one time. And it was one o'clock in the morning and we were sitting around and I had to Maxxis truck there,camping with the family. And I was getting kind of tired with the Maxxis thing at the time. Cause I was never home. They're like, what are you gonna do And I said, well, I've got this idea, put this rubber lining on a zip tie. So it doesn't move. And I had that over the razor I had, what is it A Yamaha 

 

Creighton King: the Rhino, Oh yeah. The one that Pistol Pete built me and loaned me. And I said, look, it'll go right here. And it won't move around. And they're like, and Mark's like, that's brilliant. I want in and how much do I own, we stayed up until three, o'clock talking about it. And with Mike and Mark and in the motor home and that Tuesday I went and met with Mike, Mark and Ranch and, and Prodigy. And we did a deal to partner up with Griplock Ties. And you know, I had to learn a lot about injection molding and, and I've been business partners and friends with those guys and friends for years and partners for shorter time. And, when I left Maxxis, I was unemployed for about two hours before I started working with Mark to develop, best tubs working there. And it really all comes back to, you know, it really comes back to just, you know, this Jeep, you know, we bought this Jeep, you know, and then I started rock crawling with friends like Brett Davis here. That's my first rollover in st. George. you know, we built a, you know, rock crawl has just been put me where I am. Look here, here's me with BF Goodrich tires on it 

Big Rich Klein: I saw that when you held that up earlier, I was like BFG’s!. 

 

Creighton King: Yeah. So, you know, building, Griplock ties, it's, it was much harder than I thought the mechanics of building a mold, that'll build little things like this. It's difficult. You know, we will work on this mold for quite awhile and I just got some of the first prototypes on it. And you know, it's hard to make this one and this big one, but you know, Griplock ties have really, that's their logo right there. Griplock ties. You know, you can buy them on griplockties.com. So, and we're also on Amazon and some of our other retailers and we're in McKinsey's and we're in 'em a bunch of Off-road places. So that's how I came up with Griplock ties and, and it's been fun because I've been able to sponsor some guys, you know, sponsored by giving them some Griplock ties, you know, economically build a business like this is very capital intensive, but, you know, I'm still working from my house and you know, but Hey, you know, we're taking up a couple of storage units worth of space and we're, you know, we've gotten into, you know, nearly 500 new retail stores in the last six months and, continuing to grow. 

 

Creighton King: And no, I really started promoting Griplock Ties through racing and the three V here's like our little cards. So now here's, here's the guy, Chad Rayford, he used to, you know, helped drive my truck and groove tires. And we sponsor him and there’s my airplane there, but it's a racing company, you know, that's what we do. You know, we built stuff for race cars. Like Jeremy McGrath was one of the first guys to ever run a Griplock tie on his car. He had this piece of Rollbar padding on his, a pillar. And since he was shifted, his left hand, this knuckle would move that piece of rollbar padding. He had a bunch of zip ties on it and it would still move. So I put one of my prototype Griplock ties on it. We had a mold built one at a time and it kept it secured for the rest of the season. 

 

Creighton King: I thought, man, we really got something here. So that was a few years ago, but we're growing. So you know how it is, Rich, I mean building business is difficult, you know, and it, you know, I hope to be one of those rich guys that people, a blast fame someday. But, not that yet. So just keep hustling, just keep working, you know, your, your podcast here. I appreciate you being able to plug my little company. So Griplock ties, cause you just tried to make something better. Just like you tried to make rock crawling better by having events were fun to do like Josh England was a guy that I can't believe they're guys that good out there on the planet, you know Cause Josh would so dedicated to helping everybody out. You know, I remember showing up at an event somewhere and Georgia problem at Hilltop where the tornado came through. Yeah. And, showing up and you know, man, I've been driving and Josh like here, let me do all this stuff for you. It was like, Holy crap, Josh. You know, I can't make you do all that. So WE Rock just really took care of us as sponsors because we were more just sponsors. I mean, lifelong friends, you know, see each other I'd eye on everything. 

 

Big Rich Klein: I try to do that with our marketing partners. That's why I don't like the term sponsor because it is a partnership. It truly is a marriage, you know, to make the whole thing worked for everybody. Whether it's the drivers, the, the PR the marketing partner, ourselves, the spectators, everybody has to be able to work together to make it, to make it all work.  That's why : I absolutely, I despise the term sponsor. 

 

Creighton King: So I get, I get sponsor requests all the time, you know, do you guys sponsor And I said, well, you know, for us, it's, you know, the thing that's important for me, if my small company is that I sell product, I have to sell product to feed my kids. Right. And it's, and it's that literal, you know, I have to sell product to feed my kids. And you know, when I tell that to guys that get it, that the sponsorship is not, yeah. It's if you race, you're not entitled to anything, you know And so many people think that they're entitled, well, I race this and that. I'm going, gonna put my sticker on your, on my car. So it doesn't matter, man. Are you going to help me feed my kids by selling product Right. I have a deal with, with guys like, look. 

 

Creighton King: So if you'll help me sell it, and it's easier to do now than in the past, because they come to the store and they use your offer code, then I'll pay you a commission. And that's the best thing I can do. You know Cause the more you'll push, the more, the more product I sell, the more you sell, the more you get. So no, I've got some guys that are fantastic at it. You know that they, they may have, they don't win, but they are helping me support. I can help support them if they help support sales. So right. 

 

Big Rich Klein: And that's what I, that's what I term influencer that's term. That's Another term I can't stand is influencer. Yes.  An influencer to me is somebody that actually helps you sell product.  Or has the background or the technology or the education to Talk about the product beyond the, Oh, Hey look at how pretty it is. Yeah. Or look, it's on my it's on my rig. You know, it's that to me is not influencing anybody. It's a aye. That's another one of those terms. Sponsor, sponsor and influencer. 

 

Creighton King: Yeah. Well they also call it like now affiliate marketing.

Big Rich Klein:  I like affiliate marketing.

Creighton King: I like the term affiliate marketing because I can spend display product to sales guys and they get a commission. That’s great.  I will also, you know, I can send you some product to put on your racecar and I will give you commission, you help me sell it and I’ll send you a check. And the guys who get that are getting more product, I ‘ve seen that. I’ve been more involved in aviation racing lately then I have been in car racing and I’m seeing more and more of that kind of stuff. I’ve got one guy who includes a Griplock Ties thing in his YouTube videos that he does.  You know I just sent him a check for $1000 bucks this month, that’s cool. That means he’s selling a bunch of product. Like Mike Peatty, who’s my business partner, so I don’t pay him a commission but he’s been building crazy airplanes and he’s getting 140,000 views a day on his crazy airplane builds when he mentioned Griplock Ties, it took days to fill the orders and the guys provide more content.  If you want to race and get free stuff, I don’t think that’s going to happen as much anymore. I think you probably have to drive the sales, because sales are easy for people to keep track of nowadays is tracking sales. But one thing I told guys through the years,if they’re wanting sponsorship, I said, look man, getting sponsored is the crappiest job I ever had. It is the lowest pay for the most work you will ever do. Because guys like, I got $1200 worth of tires, and I have to go do ten events. That’s the deal you made, so you gotta show up and do it. I remember one time, I think it was SuperCrawl 2 and I had done all this work on my Jeep and here I’d broke about everything, I changed the transmission, I went down there, to Farmington, and I broke and I changed the front drive shaft, rear drive shaft, pulled out the rear end and rebuilt the, and my dad was like, Why are you doing this? And I said, because I have sponsors, and I have to do it because I committed to it. To anybody out there who wants a sponsor, you’re probably better off to go to McDonald’s and pick up a few shifts to buy your own shocks or your own tires or something, because otherwise you just signed yourself up as an indentured servant. I did deals like that with guys, that was my job. To get guys to run events, and if some guys getting more money than you it’s probably because he’s better. Now don’t feel like you’re beef because Tracy Jordan got more money from BF Goodrich than you did, Tracy Jordan’s awesome, and maybe you’re not. No offence. The reason I got cut from BF Goodrich was because I wasn’t that good. So guys like Maxxis would pick me up. They wouldn’t pick me up a couple years later, because I wasn’t good enough. They build a good product. It’s just an expensive hobby.  Yes, it is. And that’s how I do my airplane racing too, I have some sponsors, It’s not, I ‘d rather just buy the stuff.

Big Rich Klein: But you understand the game, cuz it is a game.  It’s a business, it’s a game. It’s what you can provide, that Return on Investment, that ROI that everybody talks about. I mean, you did it with the carpet guys that you started off with, you built that affiliate marketing back then when no one knew what affiliate marketing was. And now, with our Bed & Breakfast, with our hotel, we’re set up where if someone goes through us to become an Airbnb host, we get a check, so Shelley actively, not actively, pursues people, but puts it out there, hey, if you’re ever interested in, let me help you become an Airbnb host. Because she’s good at it, that’s what she’s done. She’s been good for me anyway, that’s another story. But, Creighton, is there anything else you want to touch on? Think we got it all?

Creighton King:  I think we got it all.  I don’t know if I have any other great stories, I learned how I could change a tire in 8 minutes on my big Maxxis truck. We got pretty good at that. Man, we did a lt of miles, but it was a lot of fun.The biggest thing I got out of being Mr. Maxxis over 12 years was the friendships. Guys like you and Jesse Haines and Franscisco and Arturo, Robby and Carl Whitmore, just great, great people. Jason Jordan and cool people, the one thing if I could, the thing about racing is, it makes you a better man. America is built on the Spirit of Racing, to do something better, to be a little bit faster, to make do with a few less dollars  and still go out and compete and be the best you can be and not giving up, that’s what America means to me and that’s why racing people are different. Cuz I think they get it.

Big Rich Klein: I agree.That’s a great place to leave it. Thank you for your time.  Good luck with Griplock Ties and say hello to everyone up in the Salt Lake area you see.

Creighton King:  So here’s the thing Big Rich, if they go t Griplockties.com, I’ll give them Free Shipping if they use the code BIGRICH, I’ll send you an affiliate marketing check too.

Big Rich Klein: There you go. Okay everybody, you need Zip, don’t go buying regular zip ties, they’re not, they’r ecrap, get Griplock Ties because they’re going to save your body panels, they’re going to save your wiring, they’re re-usable, go to Griplock Tiesdot com, remember the code is BIGRICH.  Creighton thank you very much.

Creighton King:  I’m going to make sure I get that entered in my shopping thing right now.

Big Rich Klein:  Alright