The Allen Report: 2016 Rocky Mountain Raceway Maverik Clash of the Titans

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

This time on “The Allen Report”, we make our way to West Valley City, Utah, a state full of motorsport history as some of the biggest names in speed have gathered at the legendary Bonneville Salt Flats to be the fastest man on wheels. However, on the second weekend of August, Rocky Mountain Raceways holds its traditional Maverik Clash of the Titans monster truck figure-8 race event, this year for the historic twentieth consecutive year. To commemorate the event, a record sixteen monster trucks were invited, the most ever at this event.

Leading the charge were all four members of Jimmy Creten’s 2Xtreme Racing. Jimmy himself drove the American Sniper Bounty Hunter while wife and teammate Dawn, as usual, took the steering wheel of Scarlet Bandit. Tim “Mullet” Missentzis piloted the pickup Iron Outlaw. And the lead guitarist of metal band Five Finger Death Punch himself, Zoltan Bathory from Hungary brought his insane looking 3D-bodied Knucklehead to compete. From just up the road in South Willard, Utah was Kreg Christensen in his hot rod hybrid Wicked on Sunday. On Saturday, Kreg’s stepson Paul Jensen drove Wicked before stepping into the radical trophy truck bodied monster in its first public outing, Kamikaze on Sunday. Twins Travis and Tyler Groth arrived to do battle; Travis in his orange Trouble Maker and Tyler in the bright green Double Trouble.

Another set of twins was in the house this weekend as Aaron Basl filled in for David Smith in King Krunch while brother Daron, as usual, took the helm of the reborn El Matador after several years of the Nitro Hornet identity. Darren Migues (pronounced Me-guess) had both trucks in tow. Darren himself hopped in the driver’s seat of Nitro Menace while his daughter Kaylyn continued her blossoming monster truck career in Jailbird. From West Jordan, Utah was Ron “the Dunc” Duncombe in the Maverik Monster Trakker. Returning to the Raceway for the third straight year were Doug Charles and Wild Thang. Rounding out the field was southwestern monster truck legend Jimmy Lyons stepping in for Rod Wood to drive McGruff and Lake Havasu, Arizona’s Mark Schroeder in the cockpit of Felon.

On Saturday qualifying to open the weekend, Bounty Hunter set the pace as the first truck out at a time of 30.97 seconds. None of the trucks that followed him could go faster and Jimmy Creten got off to a strong start as the number one qualifier. In the opening round of eliminations, Scarlet Bandit and Iron Outlaw both crossed the finish line first in their respective heat races to face each other in the quarter finals. On the opposite side of the bracket, the brothers Groth both won their first round races, but would have to race against each other in the third heat of the second round. In the final opening round race, Kaylyn Migues was unable to defeat the more experienced Mark Schroeder, but garnered a good ovation from the crowd nonetheless. Bounty Hunter would out-race Maverik Monster Trakker and Iron Outlaw over the next two rounds, earning his spot in the championship race. Double Trouble did the same by defeating his own brother in the quarters and Felon in the semis to meet the former World Champion in the two lap finals. The championship round was one for the history books. Jimmy Creten got the jump off the line and had a clear cut lead going into the second half of the race. With only one corner to go, Tyler Groth whipped his truck around the turn and past an unsuspecting Jim Creten to take the Racing title.

To close the Saturday night show, a donut contest was held for the very first time after many years of wheelies, billed as a “Twister” competition. Despite being down about five hundred horsepower, Jimmy Lyons gave an admirable effort and low scores couldn’t keep the noise from the spectators down. Former Australian Monster Finals competitor Paul Jensen quickly shed the rust by turning the half Studebaker, half Camaro monster Wicked into the spin cycle and being rewarded with a good score of 8.75, with 10.0 being perfection. The very next truck out was Aaron Basl and King Krunch. His run had the crowd picking up noise as he picked up speed and cleared the bar set by Wicked with a hard to beat score of 9.35. Truck after truck came after him, but it wasn’t until the Racing champion came out when the legendary Texas monster was beaten. Tyler Groth spun Double Trouble so fast he was bicycling on two wheels before laying off the throttle to bring it down on the rubber side. The crowd was roaring and the professional judges were impressed too, giving the Gig Harbor, Washington driver the Saturday Twister win and the clean sweep.

On Sunday, a big crowd filed in for the pre show pit party and into the stands for the final night of the twentieth anniversary of the event. Scarlet Bandit was the first truck out for qualifying and she put together a very nice run, punching in a time of 31.94 seconds. By the halfway point of qualifications, Trouble Maker held the lead with a time of 31.35 seconds. But Jim Creten, the ninth of sixteen drivers out, set a new standard of 30.39, bettering his time from Saturday. That time took the lead and held it to the end. In the third heat of the first round of eliminations, Zoltan and Knucklehead won against a struggling Aaron Basl and King Krunch. In the first race of the second round, Bounty Hunter faced off against former teammate driver Kreg Christensen and Wicked. The superstar in both America and Australia put up a good fight right up until the third of the four corners, where the truck did a complete 270, ensuring that Bounty Hunter was one step closer to getting another shot at the racing win. Reigning racing champion Double Trouble was out to defend his crown and got off to a great start, dispensing of Monster Trakker and Wild Thang to reach the semi finals. But his twin Travis was there waiting. Travis gave it everything he had, pushing Trouble Maker to the limit, but Tyler could not be stopped, punching his ticket to the two lap finals for the second straight night. After beating teammate Iron Outlaw in the semi-finals, Jim Creten got the rematch he wanted. This time, the 21 year veteran of the sport could not be stopped, sliding Bounty Hunter around the turns beautifully and standing on the loud pedal down the straightaways. Tyler Groth raced as hard as he could but the power of Bounty Hunter was too much, as the Tonganoxie, Kansas native took the racing championship that had eluded him the night before, fair and square. With two minute freestyle next in line to end the event, the battle was far from over.

The track construction crew had put together a great track with a wheelie bump at one end, a ramp for big air at the other and a double van stack off the back straightaway, all fitting considering the magnitude and prestige of this year’s event.

To open freestyle, Darren Migues and Nitro Menace got off to a great start, hitting all the obstacles with gusto, doing great donuts and not stopping until his brake rotors were glowing and shooting sparks. Kamikaze, for a brand new truck with a driver who had spent a few years out of the sport, did a very good job by hitting the cars the wrong way, doing some donuts and overall getting the crowd excited. Maverik Monster Trakker nailed several slap wheelies, had great speed and consistently got good air, never breaking down and driving out under its own power, officially ending the bad luck streak that has plagued this driver and team for so many years here. His efforts did not go unnoticed, either, as the truck sponsored by the local Maverik convenience store franchise took the lead with a score of 28.5. A couple trucks later was Felon, who used several slap wheelies, lightning fast cyclones and big air to take the lead with a score of 35.5.

The very next truck was Wicked, and Kreg Christensen stood on the throttle most of the run, matching the former Monster Jam on SPEED announcer jump for jump and for velocity. The judges gave him a score of 34.75. The third to last truck out was Trouble Maker, who bent the champagne early in his run, but kept going for as long as he could, hitting numerous obstacles while the left front wheel was still attached. He finished his time, ensuring a score, just as the tire came off. Trouble Maker was towed out onto the grass and out of the way to make room for the remaining monsters. His score reflected his efforts, taking the lead at 35.5. Sadly, Iron Outlaw and Double Trouble received no score for failing to finish their two minute time. But Jimmy Creten and the Chris Kyle Bounty Hunter would settle for nothing less than the double victory. Huge wheelies, getting into the spin cycle and big air multiple times had the crowd roaring and the judges most impressed, giving Creten the freestyle championship to end the historic weekend at Rocky Mountain Raceways.

In other racing action, the Raceway featured Super Stock and fan favorite Pro Truck Racing, the latter similar to NASCAR’s Camping World Truck series, to compliment the monster action. Next, we at “The Allen Report” turn south towards the Tucson Speedway, where four western favorites arrive to tear up the front straightaway. More coverage coming from that event later. Well, thanks for reading, a special thank you to Dan Breach and all the Rocky Mountain Raceway staff for their generous hospitality, enjoy the photos and cheer on!

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Monster Photos: Monster Jam – Columbus, OH 2016

Event Information

Event: Monster Jam
Venue: Value City Arena at The Jerome Schottenstein Center
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Date: April 2nd, 2016
Photographer: Paul M. Harry

Truck Lineup

El Toro Loco (Mark List), Grave Digger (Cole Venard), Maximum Destruction (Jared Eichelberger), Monster Mutt Dalmation (Cynthia Gauthier), Monster Mutt Rottweiler (Daron Basl), NEA (Aaron Basl), Scooby Doo (Brianna Mahon), Zombie (Bari Musawwir) [Read more…]

Monster Photos: Monster Jam – Des Moines, IA 2015

Event Information

Event: Monster Jam
Venue: Wells Fargo Arena
Location: Des Moines, Iowa
Date: January 3rd-4th, 2015
Photographer: Danny Maass (Check out Maass Media on Facebook)

Truck Lineup

Blue Thunder (Dalton Millican), El Toro Loco (Becky McDonough), Grave Digger (Colton Eichelberger), Maximum Destruction (Morgan Kane), Monster Energy (Coty Saucier), Monster Mutt Rottweiler (Daron Basl), NEA Police (Aaron Basl), Scooby Doo (Bailey Shea Williams) [Read more…]

Obsession Racing 2011 Press Release #9

(Menifee, CA – Obsession Racing PR – By Jill Swanson) – Last weekend, the Obession Racing team was in Sublimity, Oregon for the Harvest Festival. This show is a non-profit event to raise money for children in need from the area. This is not just your average show. It is a complete community outreach. The trucks are sponsored by local businesses to come and perform. The trade-out is all show sponsors that participate get a private BBQ and a pre-show on Thursday night. The gates are open to the public on Friday, Saturday and Sunday afternoon.

With team member Jeff Jones’ high position at AmeriGas and high volume of work, he has not been able to drive at some of our shows this year. On the norm, Jimmy Lehnertz has stepped in for Jeff and driven for the team. But we had a special surprise in Sublimity, having Aaron Basl, Monster Jam driver of the Turtle truck, fill in for us. We thought it would be nice for him to be able to compete with his twin brother Daron in their hometown. They have a lot of family that comes to this show and their father currently lives there. We also feel as though they are family to us. We have had both Aaron and Daron stay at our home and they are such a pleasure to have around! Aaron did an excellent job piloting both trucks! He even did an awesome save in Obsession on Saturday night! All the shows were freestyle only and Rick and Aaron did the town proud. We had some good times over at Gary Basl’s house (Aaron & Daron’s Dad) after the shows and enjoyed really good food and company!

Aaron Basl stands Obsession straight up and down as he takes on the bus stack at the Sublimity Harvest Festival.

On September 30th and October 1st-2nd, we were in Red Bluff, California. We had Jimmy Lehnertz back in the seat of Obsession. This show is for the West Coast Monster Truck Fall Nationals. There were three shows with both racing and freestyle. Both of the trucks did very well in racing. I was very proud to see Rick take a round win against Tom Meents in Maximum Destruction. This is a huge honor as Tom is one of the best racers that you could compete against and very rarely looses. They were also on their game for freestyle hitting all of the big obstacles and pleasing the crowd with the show they put on.

Rick Swanson catches some big air in Obsessed at the West Coast Monster Truck Nationals.

We want to make sure we thank Aaron and the Basl family for all that they have done and do for us in making feel welcome and like family. Also we are so fortunate to have Jimmy Lehnertz drive for us and his wonderful wife and son to help us with what whatever we need! Our next event will be in Turlock, California where Eric will be back driving the Obsessed truck.

For more information on the Obsession and Obsessed monster truck, visit us online at www.ObsessionRacing.com!

Monster Photos: Monster Jam – Kansas City, MO 2011

Event: Monster Jam
Venue: Sprint Center
Location: Kansas City, Missouri
Date: February 12th, 2011
Photographer: Ross Z. Bonar

Lineup: Aftershock (Bob Robbins), Bounty Hunter (Jay McPherson), Destroyer (Dan Evans), Grave Digger (Pablo Huffaker), Krazy Train (Roger Cardot), Martial Law (Paul Strong), Reptoid (Jim Jack), TMNT (Aaron Basl) [Read more…]

Third Annual Texas Monster Shootout This Weekend

(The Woodlands, TX) That time of year is here again, the annual Texas Monster Shootout is just around the corner. October 30th is the date and we want to make this year the best so far. Our goal is to raise more money than we have in years past. We at Flame Motorsports challenge the fans to help us achieve that goal. Any one can contact us and donate to the cause. I have included a short explanation of the charity. If you feel compelled to help please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Just after Christmas in 1984, precious two-year-old Ann Denman lost her battle against cancer. Maggie LaBove and Nancy Dillard, friends of Ann’s parents, Trey and Sally Denman, pondered for several years what could be done in Ann’s memory that would make a difference. In 1989, they gathered a group of close friends together and decided that a luncheon to raise funds for pediatric cancer research would be a fitting memorial.

Over three million dollars later, Mothers Against Cancer continues to be a leader in funding childhood cancer research at Texas Children’s Hospital Cancer Center. This group is a registered non-profit organization, composed of dedicated volunteer women whose primary goal is to raise funds for the research necessary to lead to a cure for all forms of childhood cancer … all because of the love for little Ann.

So if you are looking for something to do the night before Halloween and your kids are bugging you because they want to see Monster Trucks. Come down to Houston Motorsports Park and see some of the top independent Monster Trucks in the business. Our line-up includes Fiesta King Krunch, El Matador, Bad News Travels Fast, Instigator, Reptoid, Obsession and team truck Obsessed, and coming all the way from Reno, Nevada is the Airborne Ranger. We will also have some of the best Freestyle Motorcross rider in the country. So if your within hearing distance of this write-up bring the family out. You will have a great night of exciting motorsports action and you will be helping out a great charity.

For more information on this weekend’s Texas Monster Shootout, check them out online at www.TexasMonsterShootout.com.

Monster Jam – Louisville, KY – 10/23/10

Event:  Monster Jam
Venue:  Freedom Hall
Location:  Louisville, Kentucky
Date:  October 23rd, 2010
Photographer:  Chris Parrish

Lineup:  Backdraft (Jeremy Slifko), Blue Thunder (Frank Krmel), Eradicator (Andy Slifko), Grave Digger (Pablo Huffaker), Mopar Magic (Morgan Kane), Stone Crusher (Steve Sims) Superman (Chad Fortune), TMNT (Aaron Basl) [Read more…]