BIGFOOT’s Jim Kramer Leads 2012 Hall of Fame Class

(Hazelwood, MO – Team BIGFOOT PR) – Legendary BIGFOOT driver Jim Kramer, one of the most successful and pioneering drivers in the history of monster trucks, led the 2012 class of inductees into the International Monster Truck Museum Hall of Fame this past weekend in Auburn, Indiana.

Kramer, who now joins longtime-friend and BIGFOOT creator Bob Chandler in the Hall of Fame, was the only member of the 2012 class to receive the virtual unanimous thumbs-up for induction from the voting committee, not to mention the overwhelming support for his induction from the industry and its fans on the whole.

Jim Kramer received the most votes of any nominee in the 2012 IMTM Hall of Fame Class.

With 2012 being Kramer’s 30th anniversary with the BIGFOOT team, nearly half of which was spent in the spotlight as one of the team’s most successful drivers, it is fitting that a man who has contributed so much to both his team and industry should find himself inducted into the Hall of Fame in only its second year of operation.

Kramer began his career with BIGFOOT during the mid 1970’s, when he helped Chandler create the parent company that would eventually give birth to the BIGFOOT fleet of trucks, Midwest Four Wheel Drive & Performance Center in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, MO. After selling his stake in the company and taking a hiatus from the 4-wheel drive industry for a few years, Kramer returned at the beginning of the 1980’s to help Chandler campaign his growing fleet of BIGFOOT trucks, which were beginning to gain traction in the public eye.

The popularity of BIGFOOT soared in the 1980’s, largely in part due to Kramer’s aggressive driving style and charismatic on-camera personality that left the competition both frustrated, and admiring. In 1985, Kramer won the first-ever side-by-side monster truck racing event at the New Orleans Superdome, thus setting in motion the wheels that would carry the monster truck industry from a side-show halftime act at tractor pulls into a full-fledged legitimate motorsport.

Not only was Kramer at the tip of the spear as the team’s lead driver for most of the 80’s, but he also was the team’s point man for bringing up new talent through the ranks, a job that he still maintains to this day. Kramer also was and still is a huge proponent of monster truck safety, and his notable contributions include assisting in the development and testing of BIGFOOT #8 in 1989, which set a new standard for both driver and fan safety at the time of its debut.

“I’m extremely honored to be inducted into the Hall of Fame, alongside some of this sport’s truly great personalities,” said Kramer in a post-ceremony interview. “It truly humbles me to receive this recognition not just from the fans, who thank goodness have always stood by me, but from my peers and associates as well. I can’t say ‘thank you’ enough to everyone.”

Jim Kramer delivers his acceptance speech at the 2nd Annual IMTM Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony.

After accepting his award in the midst of a standing ovation, Kramer, who is well-known for his smooth delivery and collected demeanor when speaking in public, was notably moved during his acceptance speech. In fact, his voice could even be heard cracking a couple of times as he described the sacrifices that 30 years of racing has demanded from him, including time away from his family while campaigning BIGFOOT full-time in the 80’s.

“Jim is a great friend, a great competitor, and all of us at BIGFOOT are very proud of him, and very happy to see him enter the Hall of Fame after contributing so much to this sport,” said BIGFOOT creator Bob Chandler. “I’m extremely happy for him, he truly deserves this; he’s definitely earned it.”

With the 2012 Hall of Fame weekend having drawn to a close, Kramer will now shift his focus forward towards the 2013 season, which now stands less than two months away.

“We’ve got a lot of work to get done before we head out on the road and start racing again in January,” said Kramer. “We’ll be fielding at least one new race truck during the first quarter of 2013, possibly even two. And that’s not to mention BIGFOOT #20, the world’s first electric monster truck, we’ll likely be doing some stuff with that as well, seeing as how popular the truck was at the SEMA show during its public unveiling.”

“Who knows,” added Kramer, a wry smile crossing his face. “I might just suit up one more time and see what that electric truck’s got.”

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