The Allen Report: All Star Monster Truck Tour – West Valley City, UT 2017

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

This time on “The Allen Report”, we make a road trip to the Maverik Center in West Valley City, Utah for the second consecutive year. Six roof-shaking, noise-making monster trucks arrived to go to war in Best Trick competition, Side by Side Drag racing and the high flying, car munching insanity of freestyle.

In front of his home state crowd was West Jordan’s own Ron Duncombe in the Maverik Monster Trakker. From the southern city of Hurricane, Utah, was Brian Christensen, son of Kreg Christensen, and his ogre-themed monster truck called D’Sturbed. The other competitors this weekend were all part of the Straight Up Racing stable. John Bruce drove the brand new, ferocious looking, bulldog themed 10,000 Pound Hound. This truck attracted long autograph lines at the pre-show pit parties. Also present was Dallas Glenn Rogers in Identity Theft. Ezra Wilson arrived in the sleek black 1934 Ford Sedan, California Kid. Finally, team co-owners Bill and Lorna Payne in Rock Star.

Points were on the line for each competition on the card. A perfect score in Best Trick would be 20, while one could garner up to 30 points from winning drag racing and a maximum of 40 points for winning freestyle. Points would be tallied throughout each show and whoever had the most points after all three competition elements would be the Overall Show Champion.

In the weekend opener of Friday night, it didn’t take long for things to heat up on the track. In Best Trick, each monster had only one shot to do whatever trick they could as spectacularly as possible. Identity Theft and Maverik Monster Trakker both made admirable attempts at sky wheelies off the back sides of the racing lanes. The second to last truck out was D’Sturbed, who put forth a beautiful sky wheelie and garnered a score of 15. This threw down the gauntlet to Bill and Lorna Payne, but the couple was ready. The two walked the truck across and down the racing lane jump with fantastic balance and control to take the win with a score of 18, taking the early lead on the road to the Overall Championship.

In drag racing, reaction time off the starting line was going to be crucial in deciding the results. Rock Star and 10,000 Pound Hound disposed of their respective opponents to advance to the semi-finals. In an incredible photo finish, Maverik Monster Trakker squeaked out a narrow victory over D’Sturbed. Brian Christensen would still advance, however, as the fastest loser and get a rematch with Ron Duncombe. Ten-Thousand Pound Hound upset team truck Rock Star and Maverik Monster Trakker went two for two against D’Sturbed to set up the championship race. Monster Trakker got off the line first and never looked back, crossing the line first, taking the Racing win and staying in the hunt for the Overall Championship.

In freestyle, there was no time limit and the entire track was fair game, all but ensuring an all out battle for the freestyle and Overall Titles. Sadly, 10,000 Pound Hound had broken an input shaft in the transmission, taking him out for the night. Fortunately, the truck would be fixed in plenty of time to perform in both shows the next day. Identity Theft put together decent sky wheelies and going over the double jump the wrong way to put together a respectable run and a score of 21. The bar was raised to a new standard when California Kid came out. Ezra Wilson walked the truck down both race lanes extremely well, had high speed and smashed the crush cars to take the lead with a score of 30. D’Sturbed went out next and put together a storming run, pointing his front tires in the air more than once, carrying consistent high speed and even making fine tries at donuts. Getting into the spin cycle would prove difficult for even the experienced drivers as it was tough to lose traction on the tacky, grip-filled dirt inside the Maverik Center. The last truck to go, Rock Star, had super speed going and had done awesome sky wheelies before an awkward hit sent the truck onto its roof. Bill and Lorna were okay and Rock Star suffered only minimal damage. When the score of 34 was handed down and the points measured, Rock Star had done enough to claim the Overall Championship to much adulation from the spectators.

The last two shows of the weekend the next day would prove action packed. Two streaks would continue in the matinee performance, with Maverik Monster Trakker taking two trophies in two racing competitions. However, Rock Star took both of the other two competitions to win his second straight Overall Championship.

In the last Best Trick of the weekend, Brian Christensen and D’Sturbed went far beyond vertical, even bringing the rear tires off the dirt, and brought it back down on all fours to bring the crowd to its feet. The cheering continued when an almost perfect score of 19, and eventually, the Best Trick win, was rewarded. Maverik Monster Trakker took out 10,000 Pound Hound, D’Sturbed and Rock Star to nail a clean sweep in Racing.

In the last competition of the weekend, California Kid again took the lead early in freestyle with a score of 31. Brian Christensen became the new leader with very high speed, the best cyclones of the weekend and great air over the double jump to secure the lead in both freestyle and the overall by one single point, a score of 32. Bill and Lorna Payne had a streak to defend in freestyle, but the first jump busted a $7 bolt on one of the front four link bars, forcing the officials to shut off the truck for safety purposes. This meant the end of Rock Star’s chances of an Overall Championship clean sweep as D’Sturbed ended the weekend on a high note as the final Overall Champion, or “All Star of the Night”, as the All Star Monster Truck Tour officials called it.

Also featured in the night was bar to bar, wheel to wheel ATV racing. One heat saw a rider take off from the start before the green flag. Another saw the lead rider with one lap to go start to head back to the pits in victory one lap too early, costing him the heat race victory and a shot at a front row starting spot in the main. Finally, a tradition continued inside the Maverik Center with a unique twist to it. After years of side by side racing, tuff trucks would race solo over a lap and a half track against the clock. With multiple races decided by less than a single second, the action was heated.

We at “The Allen Report” now turn our attention towards a new adventure with our friends at WGAS Motorsports as we look to go to their annual Riverside County Fair show in Indio, California. John Borba has always put on great shows for us to cover for years and we look forward to venturing to this particular show for the very first time.

All that being said, we want to send a huge, sincere “Thank You” to Bryan Wagner and the whole All Star Monster Truck Tour for hosting us again, thank you for reading, enjoy the photos and cheer on!

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Monster Photos: Monster Jam – Indianapolis, IN 2017

Event Information

Event: Monster Jam
Venue: Lucas Oil Stadium
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
Date: February 11th, 2017
Photographer: Danny Maass (Check out Maass Media on Facebook)

Truck Lineup

Avenger (Jim Koehler), Brutus (Brad Allen), El Toro Loco (Chuck Werner), Fluffy (Kevin King), Gas Monkey Garage (BJ Johnson), Grave Digger (Morgan Kane), Hooked (Bryan Wright), Lucas Oil Crusader (Linsey Weenk), Maximum Destruction (Colton Eichelberger), Saigon Shaker (Ryan Disharoon), Scooby Doo (Brianna Mahon), Slinger (Scott Hartsock), Stone Crusher (Steve Sims), War Wizard (Shane Phreed) [Read more…]

Monster Photos: Monster Jam – St. Louis, MO 2017

Event Information

Event: Monster Jam
Venue: The Dome at America’s Center
Location: St. Louis, Missouri
Date: February 4th, 2017
Photographer: Danny Maass (Check out Maass Media on Facebook)

Truck Lineup

Barbarian (Devin Jones), Black Stallion (Michael Vaters), El Toro Loco (Becky McDonough), Grave Digger (Carl Van Horn), Jester (Matt Pagliarulo), Mechanical Mischief (Jim Burns), Monster Energy (Coty Saucier), Over Bored (Jamey Garner), Overkill Evolution (Sean Duhon), Rage (Cory Rummell), Samson (Rick Steffens), Son Uva Digger (Ryan Anderson), Xtermigator (JR McNeal), Wrecking Crew (Michael Thompson) [Read more…]

Monster Photos: Monster Truck Nationals – Madison, WI 2017

Event Information

Event: Monster Truck Nationals
Venue: Alliant Energy Center
Location: Madison, Wisconsin
Date: January 27th-29th, 2017
Photographer: Danny Maass (Check out Maass Media on Facebook)

Truck Lineup

BIGFOOT #19 (Darron Schnell), Heavy Hitter (Derick Anson), Hotsy (Dale Benear), Predator (Dalton Vanskyock), Tail Gator (Doug Noelke) [Read more…]

TMB TV: MT Unlimited 8.2 – Monster Nation – Bossier City, LA 2017

tmbtv_mtu

Episode Information

Event: Monster Nation
Venue: CenturyLink Center
Location: Bossier City, Louisiana
Date: January 20th-21st, 2017
Videographer: Colby Marshall (Check out BMPS Video Productions on Facebook)

Featured Monster Trucks

Ballistic – Mac Plecker
BIGFOOT – Darron Schnell
Dirt Crew – Jerry Beck
Quad Chaos – Aaron Cain
Snake Bite – Andy Anaconda
Twisted Addiction – Tim Jones

Featured Links

www.Bigfoot4x4.com
www.DirtShows.com
www.ExtremeTeam4x4.com
www.QuadChaos.net
www.ToughestMonsterTrucks.com

[Read more…]

Monster Photos: Toughest Monster Truck Tour – Youngstown, OH 2017

Event Information

Event: Toughest Monster Truck Tour
Venue: Covelli Centre
Location: Youngstown, Ohio
Date: February 3rd-4th, 2017
Photographer: Paul M. Harry

Truck Lineup

Basher (Kevin Lewis), Dirt Crew (Jerry Beck), Heavy Hitter (Derick Anson), Quad Chaos (Aaron Cain), Snake Bite (Vinny Venom), Summit Bigfoot #21 (Larry Swim) [Read more…]

Monster Photos: Monster Jam – Detroit, MI 2017

Event Information

Event: Monster Jam
Venue: Ford Field
Location: Detroit, Michigan
Date: January 28th, 2017
Photographer: Paul M. Harry

Truck Lineup

Big Kahuna (Shane England), Dragon (Jon Zimmer), Grave Digger (Charlie Pauken), Hurricane Force (Steve Thompson), Mad Scientist (Lee O’Donnell), Mechanical Mischief (Jim Burns), Metal Mulisha (Matt Buyten), Monster Mutt Dalmation (Candice Jolly), Quad Chaos (Aaron Cain), Raminator (Mark Hall), Samson (Rick Steffens), Soldier Fortune (Chad Fortune), Storm Damage (Tim Mente), Xtreme Diesel (Dave Radzierez) [Read more…]

The Allen Report: Toughest Monster Truck Tour – Rio Rancho, NM 2017

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

This time on “The Allen Report”, we make our first venture to Rio Rancho, New Mexico, on the northwest side of Albuquerque. Albuquerque is a town well familiar with motorsport greatness as it is the home of Indianapolis 500 legend Al Unser Sr. But our focus was on the Santa Ana Star Center, where six of the best car smashing, dirt slinging monster trucks the USA can offer convened for the Toughest Monster Truck Tour. Vertical wheelie contest, tight Chicago-style bracket racing and anything goes freestyle would test the abilities of both driver and truck as points were on the line for each contest and consistency would reward just one driver with the night’s Overall Toughest Monster Truck Championship.

The field of competitors for the weekend’s action was headlined by the old rivalry of Firestone Bigfoot #21 driven by Larry Swim and Snake Bite driven by Vinny Venom. Snake Bite was even decked out in the iconic retro red paint scheme. Vinny was on a mission to find new fans and massive lines for him at the pre-show pit parties both nights ensured that his efforts were not in vain. Looking to slow down monster trucking’s greatest hero and villain was Derick Anson and Heavy Hitter. In only his second competitive weekend out of retirement was former Maximum Destruction and Stone Crusher driver Kevin Lewis, piloting the “farm fresh” themed Basher monster truck, the newest addition to Derick Anson’s growing team. Making the long haul from the state of Virginia were Michael Hawkins and backflip club member Equalizer, and teammate Brandon Budd and his trusty Red Solo truck. Red Solo Truck and Snake Bite would meet for the first time since the horrific crash at Wildwood, New Jersey last summer. With the arena filled to the rafters both nights, the pressure was on.

In the show opening Wheelie Competition, Heavy Hitter was the first truck out and put down barn burner wheelstands over the race lanes the wrong way to bring the bar to incredible heights early in the night with a score of 17 out of a possible 20. None of the trucks that went after him could score higher and Heavy Hitter got off to the best start on the road to the Toughest Monster Truck Overall Championship.

In roundy-round racing, Bigfoot, who had finished a disappointing third in Wheelies, was looking to make up ground in his quest for the overall title. His first two races did just that as Larry Swim disposed of Red Solo Truck and fastest loser Basher on the road to the finals. He would not get a chance at his old rival Snake Bite, however, as Wheelies winner Heavy Hitter eluded the snake’s venom to march to the finals and a chance at going two for two in the night. Over the first two passes over the finish line it was neck and neck. With all eyes on the finish line, both drivers put the heel to the steel with Bigfoot posting a nice win to claim the Racing championship.

In the main event of freestyle, Derick Anson and Heavy Hitter quickly got back to potential winning form, clearing the double car stack multiple times, pointing his tires toward the sky over the jammer stack and keeping fluid momentum going most of the run. When the judges’ score of 33 out of 40 was handed down, it became evident that defeating the Wheelies winner and Racing runner-up was not going to be easy. The last truck in the order, Snake Bite, came the closest, missing his target by three points at 30. When the evening’s points were tallied up, Heavy Hitter’s nigh perfect run of two wins and one second place finish easily garnered him the night’s Toughest Monster Truck Tour Overall Title.

Over the second and final weekend show on Saturday night, it was all about the classic rivalry in the sport. In his second wheelie attempt of the night, Larry Swim got a little too heavy on the loud pedal and put Bigfoot so far past vertical it ended in a rollover. Larry was unhurt and the crowd gave him adulation anyway. Snake Bite walked his wheelies beautifully and kept it on all fours to boot, but a tie with his on-track arch rival meant the win was in the spectators’ hands via cheer-off. Bigfoot got the nod from the crowd and he was the Wheelies winner. Vinny Venom got the rematch he wanted in the Racing finals. With only one turn to go, Snake Bite looked like he had evened the odds only to hit a turning pole, costing him five seconds and the race. The mysterious masked man would finally taste victory by upending his foe by one single point in freestyle after a breathtaking run with a score of 35, but it was not enough to stop Bigfoot from taking the Saturday night Overall Toughest Monster Truck Title.

Also on the card for the weekend’s action was a jet powered Smart Car. It poured heaps of flame from its afterburner, shaking the arena with noise and throwing heat that could be felt by the crowd. In addition, kids and adults alike were amazed by the car eating, flame throwing theatrics of the three-story mechanical dinosaur Megasaurus.

We at “The Allen Report” are currently unsure where our next adventure will be, but you can count on us for great event photos and coverage. Well, thanks for reading, a special thank you to Brian Manson and all the Toughest Monster Truck Tour team for having us for the first time, as well as the Santa Ana Star Center for their hospitality. Enjoy the photos and be sure to check our travels under “Monster Truckin’ with Jim and Chris” on Facebook and Instagram, enjoy the photos and cheer on!

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All content copyright TheMonsterBlog.com 2017.

Monster Photos: Monster Nation – Bossier City, LA 2017

Event Information

Event: Monster Nation
Venue: CenturyLink Center
Location: Bossier City, Louisiana
Date: January 20th-21st, 2017
Photographer: Danny Maass (Check out Maass Media on Facebook)

Truck Lineup

Ballistic (Mac Plecker), BIGFOOT #19 (Darron Schnell), Dirt Crew (Jerry Beck), Quad Chaos (Aaron Cain), Snake Bite (Andy Anaconda), Twisted Addiction (Tim Jones) [Read more…]

TMB TV: MT Unlimited 8.1 – Toughest Monster Truck Tour – Southaven, MS 2017

tmbtv_mtu

Episode Information

Event: Toughest Monster Truck Tour
Venue: Landers Center
Location: Southaven, Mississippi
Date: January 13th-14th, 2017
Videographer: Colby Marshall (Check out BMPS Video Productions on Facebook)

Featured Monster Trucks

Basher – Kevin Lewis
Dirt Crew – Jerry Beck
Heavy Hitter – Derick Anson
Quad Chaos – Aaron Cain
Snake Bite – Vinny Venom
Summit Bigfoot #21 – Larry Swim

Featured Links

www.Bigfoot4x4.com
www.DirtShows.com
www.ToughestMonsterTrucks.com

[Read more…]

Monster Photos: Toughest Monster Truck Tour – Southaven, MS 2017

Event Information

Event: Toughest Monster Truck Tour
Venue: Landers Center
Location: Southaven, Mississippi
Date: January 13th-14th, 2017
Photographer: Danny Maass (Check out Maass Media on Facebook)

Truck Lineup

Basher (Kevin Lewis), Dirt Crew (Jerry Beck), Heavy Hitter (Derick Anson), Quad Chaos (Aaron Cain), Snake Bite (Vinny Venom), Summit Bigfoot #21 (Larry Swim) [Read more…]

Monster Photos: Monsters on the Beach – Wildwood, NJ 2016

Event Information

Event: Monsters on the Beach: WWNJ Monster Truck Beach Races
Venue: The Wildwood Beach
Location: Wildwood, New Jersey
Date: August 19th-21st, 2016
Photographer: Danny Maass (Check out Maass Media on Facebook)

Truck Lineup

Avenger (Cory Rummell), Bigfoot #19 (Darron Schnell), Crushstation (Greg Winchenbach), Equalizer (Mike Hawkins), Lumberjack (Tom Durkee), Red Solo Truck (Brandon Budd), Snake Bite (Vinny Venom), Wrecking Crew (Mike Thompson) [Read more…]

The Allen Report: Budweiser Monster Truck Fall Nationals – Turlock, CA 2016

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

This time on “The Allen Report”, we make a long trek to Turlock, California for the second time in 2016, and third time overall. Upon our arrival, we headed to the Budweiser Monster Truck Fall Nationals at the Stanislaus County Fairgrounds, presented by our friends at WGAS Motorsports as their last show of the season. Six high flying, ground pounding monster trucks came to the fairgrounds to slug it out in the car munching madness of freestyle.

From just a few hours away in Vacaville, CA was the team of Tony Canedo. Teammate and friend Jeff Souza drove team truck Enforcer while “The Flying Spaniard” Tony himself, as always, got behind the wheel of his bright red Play’n for Keeps. Rosalee Ramer took a weekend off from studying at Georgia Tech to take the wheel of her Wild Flower monster truck. Her father, Kelvin Ramer, took to the track in his trusty 1934 Ford Coupe he calls Time Flys. Finally, husband and wife Jimmy and Dawn Creten arrived, ready to invade the fairgrounds and defeat the competition. Once more, Dawn was behind the wheel of Scarlet Bandit, with the words “You can’t catch me!” displayed with pride on the tailgate. Jimmy Creten was piloting his usual American Sniper Bounty Hunter. With professional judges ready and a perfect score of 100 on the line, every move would count and consistency was crucial.

During the driver’s meeting earlier in the day, a random draw was held to determine freestyle order, a rare moment for WGAS Motorsports. Much to the dismay of the Grand Champion from the spring event last May, Jimmy Creten, he was out first. But in true Bounty Hunter fashion, the former World Champion came out with a storming run. One of Bounty Hunter’s first moves was a sky wheelie on top of a pair of pink-painted vans which crushed them down flat, but he also performed some beautiful slap wheelies, big air and even a rare triple combination of moves across the motorsports arena floor to set the standard for those still to come. With a score of 95, it wasn’t going to be easy for the remaining monsters to clear the bar set by Jimmy Creten.

Tony Canedo hit the tuff truck jumps and nailed slap wheelies for an admirable effort and score of 87. Time Flys continued the wheelie assault and hit the van stack with power. Jeff Souza and Enforcer smashed the crush cars and reached for the sky in another great freestyle. The last run of the afternoon went to the 2016 Monster Jam Rookie of the Year, Rosalee Ramer and Wild Flower. The young lady set to compete on the Monster Jam FS1 West points championship next year had a fantastic run going with huge air and a spectacular slap wheelie when she got a little too close to the arena boundaries and she had to be shut off by the event officials. Upon restart, Wild Flower was in great shape to continue on, but then a steering line blew and the run ended then and there. None of the competitors that had gone after Bounty Hunter achieved a higher score and Creten was the afternoon champion, but it wasn’t game over yet for his rivals, as there was still one more show to go that evening.

In the evening show, all drivers gave great freestyle efforts as they tried to top each other in a different order from the afternoon. Big air was accomplished, donuts were spun and what was left of the crush cars were smashed down even further. In a rare moment, Jimmy Creten was beaten in the evening show by Kelvin Ramer and Time Flys. Both had put together incredible efforts to impress the professional judges and when the scores were handed down, Bounty Hunter had fallen short of Time Flys by one single point. But the honest competition over two shows and very decent crowds both times had assured a very good season ending weekend for the WGAS Motorsports crew.

But the big monsters weren’t alone at the Stanislaus County Fairgrounds. Jeff Souza’s son Hunter brought his Wrecking Machine mini-monster to give a good show and, in the evening, brought the crowd to its feet with a sky wheelie that was a little too steep, ending in a backwards rollover. Hunter was just fine and the spectators loved it anyway. Also, there were two rounds a show of two different classes of tuff truck racing, creating four rounds of tuff truck racing altogether. Fastest time in both sessions was the winner. The competition was a heated affair, with drivers of both classes pushing hard to take the winner’s plaque.

On that note, we at “The Allen Report” are in the middle of preparation for the 6th Annual International Monster Truck Museum Hall of Fame Ceremony & Reunion in Auburn, Indiana. On the eve of Friday, November 11th, there will be a meet n’ greet with both past and incoming inductees as well as other classic monster truck owners and drivers. In the late morning of November 12th, there will be a history discussion with the inductees followed that evening by an inductee autograph session, a hearty meal and the Hall of Fame ceremony itself. We hope to see you there.

Well, thank you all for reading. We especially want to extend our gracious thank-yous to John Borba, his daughter Chelsea Kessler and the whole WGAS Crew for having us this weekend and past all this past year, don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Instagram under the name “Monster Truckin’ with Jim and Chris”, enjoy the photos and cheer on!

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All content copyright TheMonsterBlog.com 2016.

The Allen Report: 4-Wheel Jamboree Nationals – Indianapolis, IN 2016

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

This time on “The Allen Report”, we go far from home to Indianapolis, Indiana, a city where motorsport has thrived for decades with open wheel racing’s Indy 500, stock car racing’s Brickyard 400 and drag racing’s U.S. Nationals all hugely popular events on the calendar. Another such occasion this past September was the historic 35th Anniversary of the Lucas Oil 4 Wheel Jamboree Fall Nationals at the Indiana State Fairgrounds.

Seven of the nation’s fastest and most destructive monster trucks were on hand to settle the Monster Truck Thunder Drags Racing and Freestyle Points titles. On the racing side of things, the series returned to its roots with a simple two obstacle drag race track with no turns. Reigning champion Larry Swim pulled in with the Lucas Oil Bigfoot #21. The old rivalry in monster truck competition continued as the mysterious Vinny Venom, nephew of Colt Cobra, arrived in the retro Snake Bite. From Champaign, IL were no less than three different Hall Brothers Racing team trucks. Team co-founder Mark Hall, as usual, drove the sleek black Raminator. Mat Dishman came to town in the bright red Rammunition and Dale Benear completed the Hall Bros team triple threat behind the wheel of the General Tire Monster Truck. Returning to the 4 Wheel Jamboree circuit after a few years elsewhere was Doug Noelke and the Tail Gator monster truck. Finally, series newcomer Denver Echternkamp and his Venom Chevrolet monster rounded out the field.

There was non-competitive, display-only monster presence on the grounds too. Jeff Krekeler had recently bought the iconic High Roller monster truck from a long time ago and, with some help, the truck has been restored and it certainly looked great. Also, Alan Fenstermaker brought his former mega truck turned Stage 1 old school truck Earthquake to the fairgrounds. Finally, International Monster Truck Museum and Hall of Fame creator and President Jeff Cook had his 1934 Coupe monster Hot Rod Harry in tow. Jeff set up a tent to advertise the Hall of Fame ceremony in Auburn in a couple short months, complete with this year’s Hall of Fame banner and flyers to pass out.

As far as points were concerned early Friday, Larry Swim was the betting man’s favorite, needing to win five rounds of racing at the least to retake the title. Snake Bite, however, was running away with the freestyle championship and a win on Friday night would lock up the win for the Snake Bite team. With every round of racing and every freestyle run counting, it wasn’t going to be easy for any of the teams eligible for either championship. Bearing this in mind, the drivers strapped into their trucks and the weekend of competition began on Friday. Even a horrible rainstorm just a few hours before Friday’s show time couldn’t keep the monsters off the track as the Family Events staff dried the track quickly as best they could to ensure a fast and even racing surface and the freestyle obstacles would not be a hindrance.

In the first heat of Round 1, the Bigfoot team’s chances of a second straight title got off to a bad start when Larry Swim barely lost in the first round to Rammunition. It was no easier for Mat Dishman in the semi finals, however, as the opponent was teammate Mark Hall. But Mat duplicated his speed and finesse from the round before, punching his ticket to the finals. The rival for the racing win would be Snake Bite. Vinny Venom pushed as hard as he could, but the power of Rammunition was too much, taking the first win of the weekend and closing ground on Bigfoot in the points.

In freestyle, the Hall Brothers team trucks all gave very good efforts, doing tire smoking cyclones, some hitting the bus at the finish line end of the track and putting together all around exciting runs. Snake Bite, however, hit the cars on top of an eight foot hill sideways, did some drifting around the far end of the track with one rear wheel over the edge of the banking and did excellent slap wheelies to take the freestyle win and the points championship in the freestyle category.

Over the course of the weekend, the side by side racing remained intense and fast, with many heats decided by less than a truck length. Freestyle was also a heated affair, with multiple trucks getting big air and others going progressively faster on donuts. With only freestyle in the second show on Saturday, Snake Bite shed his fiberglass skin from the cab forward early in the run and later crushed it, causing much cheering from the spectators.

When all was said and done in racing on Sunday, Larry Swim and Bigfoot became the first person all weekend to defeat Rammunition in the racing semi-finals and winning a second consecutive series championship by just one single race in doing so. When his opponent in the finals, General Tire, could not return, Larry took it easy over the course and snagged the Sunday racing title. Dale Benear in General Tire had just barely beaten Doug Noelke and Tail Gator but landed awkwardly and suffered a horrible crash which saw the truck tumble both end over end and side over side. In spite of the severity of the crash, Dale walked away unhurt.

Between shows on Saturday, the 2016 International Monster Truck Museum Hall of Fame Class was revealed on the main stage at one end of the grounds to much positive adulation. This year’s inductees include:

• Bob George, promoter and founder of the USHRA. Coined the term “monster truck”.
• Charlie Pauken, driver of famous trucks including Excaliber and Grave Digger.
• Jerry Richmond, owner and driver of Lethal Weapon and Weapon 1 and builder/driver of Overkill and Maximum Overkill.
• Terry Woodcock, owner, builder and driver of numerous monster trucks including several bearing the on-screen identities of 1990s wrestling superstars and the legendary Cyclops name.

All of us at The Allen Report sincerely congratulate this year’s Hall of Fame class and we look forward to seeing them inducted into monster truck immortality in just a matter of weeks.

When the monsters were not racing, there was no shortage of other four wheel drive action going on throughout the weekend. On Saturday, a new Jamboree tradition was born in the UTV Side by Side Shootout. A burnout contest was held as well, which had the audience cheering long and loud. Also, there were tough trucks racing each other head to head on a special figure-8 course that included elements of the monster truck race track. Finally, four young people of eight to fifteen years of age showcased what they could do in their mini monsters. Even a rollover here or vehicle breakage there could not dampen the happy spirits of both the kid drivers and the crowd.

Well, tickets for the International Monster Truck Museum Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony & Reunion are now on sale. There will be a meet ‘n’ greet the evening of Friday, November 11th and a history discussion with the inductees in the late morning of November 12th. This will be followed by an autograph session and hearty dinner on Saturday evening prior to the Hall of Fame induction ceremony later that night. We hope to see you there.

With this weekend behind us, we at “The Allen Report” turn towards a month of October jam packed with monster truck shows her in the Southwest. After a weekend with our friends at WGAS Motorsports in Perris, CA, the Arizona State Fair will receive new participants with a new promoter and we will cover the long-awaited return of monsters to the drag strip of Wild Horse Motorsports Park, formerly Firebird Raceway.

Thank you ALL for reading, a special thank you to Family Events for having us, don’t forget to check us out on Facebook and Instagram under the name “Monster Truckin’ with Jim and Chris”, enjoy the photos, and cheer on!

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