The Allen Report: San Diego County Fair Monster Trucks – Del Mar, CA 2016

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

This time on “The Allen Report” we travel to San Diego, California, a city with no shortage of sport and entertainment venues, from football’s Qualcomm Stadium to baseball’s Petco Park. But on the first few days of July at the San Diego County Fair, the big crowds were inside the Del Mar Arena. Six monster trucks arrived to do head to head battle in roof scraping, dirt slinging freestyle competition.

Making the trip from Tonganoxie, Kansas, were Jimmy Creten piloting Bounty Hunter with wife Dawn Creten right behind in Scarlet Bandit. From just up the road in Watsonville, California, were the father and daughter team of Kelvin and Rosalee Ramer. Kelvin was in his sleek 1934 Ford coupe Time Flys and Rosalee, the 2016 Monster Jam Rookie of the Year, in her usual Wild Flower. Finally, Rick and Eric Swanson arrived looking to bring the title back to their home state. Rick, once more, was driving his 20th Anniversary Obsession with Eric at the wheel of the Baja bodied Obsessed.

In the opening show on Friday, Obsession kept his speed up and turned in his customary great donuts for a reasonable score of 19. But Wild Flower was not as lucky. The camshaft got jammed within the engine that cut the power of the truck, causing internal motor damage and Rosalee was unable to fire back up. Kelvin’s luck wasn’t much better, for an attempt to crush the anti-breast cancer car in the middle of the arena floor tore a steering hose. But the Swanson family wasn’t safe from mechanical gremlins either. Obsessed had a great run going with lots of air when a head gasket blew, finishing the truck for the weekend. Driver Eric wasn’t finished, however, as he hopped in his father’s vehicle for the rest of the weekend. But Jimmy Creten could not be stopped. His signature coasting slap wheelies, incredible speed and multiple trips to the sky had the crowd roaring by the time the red flags waved, signifying the end of his two minute time. The crowd continued to cheer when Jim’s scores of tens across the board came up, giving him the win.

Over the course of the weekend, Jimmy Creten used terrific wheelies, ongoing high speed, great air and, most of all, kept his truck together through the whole run again and again to take the clean sweep of freestyle victories. Time Flys and Wild Flower would get fixed but as Kelvin was doing a wheelie on the second, a champagne snapped and the monster lost his left front wheel. Multiple teams pitched in and Kelvin’s ride was repaired in good time. Eric continued to showcase his talent for monster driving in his father’s truck, getting very good air, picking up the family tradition of great cyclones and often getting good scores for it. Wild Flower was put back together eventually and the crowd favorite Rosalee didn’t miss a beat, consistently putting together all around exciting runs.

During breaks in the monster action, the audience was treated to the future of auto racing as kids of various ages raced mini dwarf cars and junior outlaw sprints. The small scale of the race cars didn’t have much impact on the racing action itself; however, as multiple battles for positions, the occasional spin and great action all around had the crowd cheering again and again. Also performing were Shane Plato and Corbin Shockey in the Skull Krusher and Monster Buddy mini monster trucks. Based on the good performances of these two youngsters, the future of the sport is in good hands.

Also in attendance throughout the weekend was a retired FDNY firefighter who had been trapped by World Trade Center debris for three days after 9/11 before being rescued. Before each show, he gave a passionate speech on how blessed we as Americans are. We at “The Allen Report” were thrilled to hear such an American hero speak on Fourth of July weekend.

Next for us at “The Allen Report” is a show just up the road in Pomona, California, a town steeped in motorsport tradition. More monster action is expected to come from there. That said, thanks for reading, a special thank you to John Borba, Chelsea Kessler and all of WGAS Motorsports, not just for their great hospitality but also for letting your humble writer announce in front of the crowd for the very first time, enjoy the photos and cheer on!

Photo Gallery

All content copyright TheMonsterBlog.com 2016.

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

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

“The Allen Report” is back and we return to the Stanislaus County Fairgrounds in Turlock, California, this time in the month of May for the popular Budweiser Monster Truck Spring Nationals. Turlock is a relaxed, peaceful town where the biggest disturbance is normally the frequent freight train. However, there was some additional noise in the air on Friday and Saturday night where seven high flying, car smashing monster trucks arrived to do battle in bus munching, donut spinning freestyle.

Making the trip from Tonganoxie, Kansas were Jimmy Creten and Bounty Hunter. Popular hometown driver Russell Steeley stepped up to drive team truck Iron Outlaw for the final time so he could give his pulling truck his sole attention in the near future. From just down the road in Menifee, California, were the father/son duo of Rick and Eric Swanson. Former Monster Jam Young Guns Shootout competitor Eric was behind the wheel of his pickup bodied Obsessed and Rick continued his 20th anniversary of professional monster trucking in his breathtaking Obsession, complete with a film strip featuring just a fraction of his numerous TV and commercial appearances running down either side. Rounding out the field was Tony Canedo, who brought all three of his trucks, ready to give a good show to the crowd. David Tucker would take the wheel of Survivor and Jeff Souza would pilot Enforcer while Tony himself stuck to his usual Play ‘N for Keeps.

With two buses to crush, a van stack at the arena entry, two great spaces for getting into the spin cycle and several tuff truck jumps to get the monsters off the ground, there was no room for error and every freestyle point would count. As the huge crowd filed in for the pre-show autograph session and the show on Friday night, the drivers could feel the pressure.

First truck out was Jeff Souza and Enforcer who immediately got huge air over the bus stack. Obsession with Rick Swanson at the wheel came out next, got good air and great donuts. The third truck in the order was Survivor, and the iconic Pacific Northwest name under new ownership put together a great run, clearing the tuff truck jumps and doing a nosedive over the bus that saw driver David Tucker just barely bring it back down onto all fours. Next in line was Iron Outlaw, who cleared the entire bus stack completely, kept the speed up the whole run and did some lightning fast cyclones as Russ Steeley finished up his second to last ever run in a monster truck. His effort rewarded him with a score of 86 with 100 being perfection. Truck after truck came after him but it wasn’t until the last truck in line and former World Champion hit the floor. Jimmy Creten matched Russell jump for jump, but carried several great wheelies across the fairgrounds floor to take the lead and the Friday night victory.

The second and final night of monster truck competition saw a big crowd and bigger efforts by every monster pilot in the field. However, the end of the night came a little too soon for the first truck out Enforcer. Coming down from the van stack awkwardly, the 1990s West Coast monster legend in its new form blew the left front tire. Jeff Souza wasn’t hurt, however, and that was the closest to a major incident the whole night. In his last ever appearance behind the wheel of a monster vehicle, hometown hitter Russell Steeley gave huge air over the bus, and an admirable wheelie attempt to put him back in the lead with the championship in sight. The young rising star Eric Swanson pushed his machine to its limit, clearing the bus stack both ways and turning in his family’s usual great donuts to get the crowd screaming. Last out was the only driver who could earn back to back titles. Jimmy Creten gave everything the fans wanted; big air, wheelies and donuts. It was not an unrewarded attempt either as the second perfect score in as many nights garnered Bounty Hunter the double victory. Both the 2Xtreme drivers were interviewed for the crowd and were thankful to the fans for showing up to support them.

In other race action, Jeff Souza’s son Hunter, Lee Plato’s son Shane and Corbin Shockey practiced for the big leagues with the Wrecking Machine, Skull Krusher and Monster Buddy mini monsters, respectively. Also there was one at a time, vehicle against timed tuff truck racing which saw the crowd cheering the reckless drivers and booing the cautious ones. One of the tuff truck participants was former Mike Welch Motorsports driver Sammy Baca out of Modesto, CA. Finally, the future of racing was on full display as kids drove Junior Outlaw Sprint and Mini Dwarf racecars on a tight oval around the bus stack with very little room to overtake. This made the racing exciting for all in attendance. During opening ceremonies for both shows, a moment of silence was held for longtime WGAS announcer Lloyd Massey who tragically passed away just days before the Monster Jam World Finals this year.

Okay, now we at “The Allen Report” look to make a return to Longview, Washington, to support Mike Welch Freaks of Freestyle and we do so hoping for better weather this time. In the meantime, thank you for reading, a special thank you to Chelsea Kessler and the entire WGAS crew for having us, enjoy the photos, don’t forget to follow us in real time under the name “Monster Truckin’ with Jim and Chris” on Facebook and Instagram, and cheer on!

Photo Gallery

All content copyright TheMonsterBlog.com 2016.

The Allen Report: Monster Trucks & FMX – Phoenix, AZ 2015

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

This time on “The Allen Report”, we go to the Arizona State Fairgrounds, a venue that has pretty much seen it all for the past one-hundred and thirty years, from the pre-war capital of motor racing in the city of Phoenix to a premier rodeo venue. And, of course, the Sanderson Ford Arena has seen no shortage of monster truck action, as it did over the fair closing weekend Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Six gear grinding, ground pounding monster trucks arrived to do battle in six shows throughout the weekend. The shows consisted of wheelie contest and freestyle over Friday and Saturday before the High Jump and freestyle competitions on Sunday.

The shows featured Lake Havasu City, Arizona’s Mark Schroeder and his Felon truck. From just a few hours south of Phoenix was Rod Wood and his McGruff monster, ready to take a bite out of the competition. There also was Mexico’s Cesar Nunez driving the sleek 1963 split window Corvette Rat Attack. There also was the California based father and son team of Rick and Eric Swanson. Rick, as usual, piloted his bright yellow trophy truck Obsession and twenty year old Eric took the helm of his blue pickup truck bodied Obsessed. Rounding out the field was Tucson’s Sam Sturges in his 1942 Dodge Panel Wagon Unnamed & Untamed.

The heads-up competition only got hotter as the weekend went on. In wheelie contest on Friday evening, all trucks gave great efforts, each driver pushing his truck to the limit to get the best wheelie possible. Things quickly boiled down to a showdown between McGruff and Rat Attack, both going vertical with regularity, often to good response from the huge crowd. In freestyle, the two wheelie bumps, a set of crush cars and a huge center ramp were all fair game to win over the audience. Both Rat Attack and McGruff got huge air over the center ramp while Felon worked his signature wheelies and did some cyclones that truly were dirt slinging to end the opening show on Friday.

On Saturday, the veteran Sam Sturges and Unnamed & Untamed got off to a fast start in the wheelie contest, going straight up and down to push way ahead of father and son Swanson. But in doing so, Unnamed broke an axle. The California team caught up quickly in freestyle, however, as both Rick and Eric smashed the crush cars and soared over the arena floor thanks to the big ramp in the middle, plus some great cross thread moves, all attempting to win over the fans. Because of Sam Sturges’ breakage, Cesar Nunez in Rat Attack stepped up to take his place. Not resting on his laurels from the first two shows, the corvette monster had an excellent power wheelie while the Obsession trucks struggled to do the same. But when it came to freestyle, Rick and Eric did not back down, getting increasingly big air into the night sky and crushing the cars multiple times to thunderous applause from the capacity crowd.

In the third show of the weekend midway through Saturday, McGruff was in a class all his own, breaking away from the competition. He did so with a great forty-five degree angle wheelie and changing things up with a terrific sky wheelie off the crush cars. And the fans ate it up. In freestyle, the end of Felon’s weekend came a little premature when the motor broke and the damage was not repairable. This left a shootout between Rat Attack and McGruff. But ignition problems plagued Rat Attack from the very start, giving the best run to the Tucson native behind the wheel of McGruff.

On the final day of the fair, show organizers changed things up for the crowd by having McGruff take the place of Obsessed. This led to a battle in wheelie contest for the ages. Both the Tucson representatives in McGruff and Unnamed & Untamed stood straight up and down with no clear winner between the two.

In the final show of the weekend, the High Jump competition had the crowd cheering on and the drivers continued to push their machines. Each monster got two jumps each to outperform the others. No official winner was announced to the enormous number of spectators in the stands, but Obsessed and Rat Attack clearly went the highest of all. In the fair closing freestyle, both Rat Attack and Unnamed & Untamed went for broke with superb slap wheelies, but McGruff put together an exciting run that had the fans cheering practically from start to finish by smashing the crush cars, and great sky wheelies to wrap things up for the monsters at the fair for 2015.

In other action, four daredevil freestyle motocross riders including a member of the famous Metal Mulisha wowed both the young and young at heart alike with spectacular tricks high above the arena floor. Well, we at “The Allen Report” are almost ready to catch a plane to Auburn, Indiana, home of the fifth Annual International Monster Truck Museum Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony & Reunion, where four legendary monster truck personalities will become enshrined into the Hall of Fame. Thank you for reading, a sincere thanks to Zack McKinley and Grand Canyon State Promotions for having us, enjoy the photos and cheer on!

Photo Gallery

All content copyright TheMonsterBlog.com 2015.

The Allen Report: Monster Truck Show – Pomona, CA 2015

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

This time on “the Allen Report”, we once more venture to the Fairplex in Pomona, California, a town rich in motorsport history as the birthplace of the modern day drag racing funny car and a host city of one of the first ever stadium off road event produced by the legendary Mickey Thompson. But on Fourth of July, it was all about gear grinding monster trucks. Jim and Dawn Creten made the trip up from Del Mar with Bounty Hunter and Scarlet Bandit ready to thrill the fans, as did Tony Canedo, only this time pulling double duty in Play N’ 4 Keeps and Enforcer. And nineteen year old rising star Eric Swanson was in town ready to perform in his sharp looking off road bodied Obsessed monster. When a huge crowd piled in, all things appeared to point to an action packed night, and all the performers delivered.

To start the action, a new Pomona tradition was born when “the Rocketman” Choche Valencia had fans marveling at his one-hundred and fifty-five foot leap out of a cannon into the safety of a big net. Next were the daredevil freestyle motocross riders, notably the leader of the “Fitz Army”, Metal Mulisha’s own Jimmy Fitzpatrick. The fans cheered on and on as the riders went bigger and bigger with the tricks, ultimately culminating in backflip variations.

The monsters got off to roaring starts too, with roundy-round racing setting the bar for what was to come. Dawn Creten and Eric Swanson faced off for the right to face Bounty Hunter in the super final. A slow start and hitting one the turning tires slowed down Eric, giving Dawn a rematch against her husband from Del Mar. Jim Creten rarely makes the same mistake and he did not here, crossing the finish line just ahead of Scarlet Bandit. Freestyle began with Eric Swanson getting great air off the bread truck and doing some excellent donuts. Tony Canedo and Play N’ 4 Keeps gave great wheelie efforts and were rewarded with the crowd’s cheers. But Jim Creten showcased why he won the Freestyle World Title in 2005, with huge speed, smashing through a motor home and completely vertical wheelstands. To finish off the monster action, the others joined Bounty Hunter on the stadium floor and drove up and over the huge center mound, leading to all the monsters doing side by side donuts to ignite the initial fireworks as a prelude to what was just a few moments away. A spectacular fireworks show, with hearts and happy faces to almost any color conceivable had the crowd gasping and cheering deep into the night.

Well then, we at “The Allen Report” are going to take a little time off, but when we return, you will have access to monster truck figure-8 racing, courtesy of our friends at Rocky Mountain Raceways. Til that day, thank you for reading, a special thank-you to John Borba and WGAS Motorsports for their hospitality, enjoy the photos and cheer on!

Photo Gallery

All content copyright TheMonsterBlog.com 2015.

The Allen Report: Monster Truck Show – Phoenix, AZ 2015

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

This time on the Allen Report, we make our way to the Maricopa County Fair, which each year caters to a huge crowd with good food, thrilling rides and
excellent entertainment. On Friday and Sunday of the fair, the big crowd was in the Sanderson Ford Arena for high flying, super fast monster truck action. Tonight’s action would be provided through wheelie contest, roundy-round racing and freestyle. Friday featured Ben “Bobo” Winslow representing Sturges Motorsports in Nasty Boy. Fellow Tucson representatives Rod Wood and McGruff were in the house as well. The father and son team of Rick and Eric Swanson made the trip from California ready to give a show. On Sunday, these four were joined by the other two Sturges monster vehicles, Unnamed & Untamed with “Wildman Sam” Sturges at the controls and good friend Cesar Nunez at the helm of the ’63 Corvette Rat Attack.

On Friday, Nasty Boy and McGruff gave preview freestyle runs to get the crowd pumped up for later action. When the show officially began with wheelie contest, admirable efforts were given by all, but Rod Wood carried a beautiful slap wheelie most of the length of the floor despite little traction to the loudest applause from the crowd.

In side by side racing, officials decreed that not one but two laps would be required to achieve victory. In the heats, Rick Swanson had no trouble against Nasty Boy, punching his ticket to the finals. Son Eric did the same when Rod Wood gave a good race but was just unable to overtake the nineteen year old before the finish line jump. Before the finals, the two runners-up were bound for a third place race. But when mechanical issues prevented McGruff from firing up, the veteran Ben Winslow conserved his truck to make sure he got to the final jump and took third place. In the father and son racing finals, Rick had the lead halfway home but Eric was picking up speed. At the final jump of the bracket, nineteen year old Eric barely pulled out the victory, much to the delight of the audience.

In Freestyle, Nasty Boy soared through the Arizona sky and finally got the wheelies he had been seeking to much positive response from the crowd. Rod Wood was a man on a mission about not being able to race for third place and carried high speed, big air and superb cyclone donuts to put himself in the hunt for the freestyle win. Rick Swanson had had cross thread moves, huge air and great sky wheelies off the construction barriers, attempting to win over the fans. But Eric Swanson shot for the moon, duplicated his father’s sideways moves and put his truck into the spin cycle to the loudest cheers of all to sweep racing and freestyle the first night. With two shows to go on Sunday, the game was far from over.

On the first show Sunday, every driver gave good attempts, but Rod Wood did not rest on his laurels from two nights earlier, taking the second straight wheelie win, going straight up and down and riding it out for most of the arena floor. It wasn’t an easy win though, as Nasty Boy, Rat Attack and Unnamed & Untamed all gave the Tucson native a run for his money.

On to racing, where only one lap, not two, was needed to win. Rick Swanson buried the throttle to the floor to beat Nasty Boy coming to the finish line jump in the first round. He got the biggest air of the weekend, but a slap wheelie sent him into the concrete barriers at the the end of the track, heavily damaging the front differential. When only two trucks remained, Eric Swanson was looking to defend his Racing win streak, but Sam Sturges in Unnamed & Untamed had other ideas. When the checkered flag flew, Eric’s trophy truck monster was was just ahead of his veteran opponent, going two for two in Racing. In freestyle, every driver threw caution to the wind, hoping to get the loudest response from the spectators possible. But once more, the second generation driver Eric Swanson put big air, high speed and dusty cyclones all into the mix to a clapping and cheering crowd, clearly sweeping the Racing and Freestyle again.

In the fair closing show late Sunday, Racing was cut from the program to make room for the filler acts. For freestyle, some of the losing democross cars were made into a seven car jump and two vans were put in place as well to be crushed. In the final wheelie contest, the man behind McGruff picked up where he left off with perfect verticality and superb distance in two of his three tries to sweep wheelies for the weekend. In the final freestyle competition of the Maricopa County Fair, every driver gave it all. Nasty Boy was first to hit the two vans which gave way underneath him, sending him on his side. Driver and former bullfighter Ben Winslow was just fine. Cesar Nunez performed well in the Rat Attack vehicle, hitting every jump with gusto before a blown front tire ended his run early. But the driver behind the wheel of Obsessed was a kid on a mission. Big air over the cars, dirt slinging cyclones and high speed all through the run erased any doubt who the winner was.

The other acts alongside monster trucks were side by side tuff truck racing, which was won by John Davis in vehicle number 1495, an off road style pickup truck. John was actually behind until the final lap, where his opponent started to celebrate his victory one lap too early. And the last man standing democross had the audience both cheering and laughing with intentional spinning out, thunderous contact and vehicles coming down from the jumps on top of opposing cars’ trunks. A timed event, this race went on and on until one car was still running. That car was number 86 with Tim Randall at the wheel.

Well, monster truck fans, we at “The Allen Report” are just getting started with a busy summer and autumn schedule coming up fast and we look forward to keeping you updated from throughout the west coast, among other places. Thank you for reading, a sincere thanks to Zack and Grand Canyon State Promotions for having us, enjoy the photos and cheer on!

Photo Gallery

All content copyright TheMonsterBlog.com 2015.

Monster Video: All Star Monster Truck Tour – West Valley City, UT 2014

Details

Event: All Star Monster Truck Tour
Venue: Maverik Center
Location: West Valley City, Utah
Date: January 31st-February 1st, 2013
Videographer: Maverik Center Staff

Description

Ross Z. Bonar from the TheMonsterBlog.com was on hand announcing for the 2014 All Star Monster Truck Tour event at the Maverik Center this past weekend in West Valley City, Utah. There Toxic, Obsession, Airborne Ranger, Obsessed, Over Bored and Maverik Monster Trakker battled it out in three big shows. While we did not have our own video crew on hand, Desi and the amazing Maverik Center media staff was gracious enough to allow us to share some highlights they captured with you here on TMB. Enjoy!
[Read more…]

Monster Photos: All Star Monster Truck Tour – West Valley City, UT 2014

Event Information

Event: All Star Monster Truck Tour
Venue: Maverik Center
Location: West Valley City, Utah
Date: February 1st, 2014
Photographer: Jill Swanson

Truck Lineup

Airborne Ranger (Joe Cypher), Obsessed (Eric Swanson), Obsession (Rick Swanson), Over Bored (Jamey Garner), Toxic (Travis Petri) [Read more…]

The Allen Report: Monster Truck Show – Del Mar, CA 2013

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

This time on “The Allen Report”, we make our annual trek to the San Diego County Fair in Del Mar, California for a series of showdowns between a national name and a home state hero. For the past several years, Kelvin Ramer and his Time Flys machine have made several attempts to replace Jimmy Creten and Bounty Hunter as King of the Del Mar monster trucks. And he was going to try again this year. However, this was no two truck show. Right behind Jimmy was Trent Montgomery in Iron Outlaw. But Kelvin had backup of his own. That was his own daughter, young Rosalee Ramer, driving Detour. Rick Swanson returned with Wrongway Rick to the place where it debuted one year ago. Son Eric Swanson drove his trophy truck bodied-monster wearing the normal Obsessed logo to round out the field.

Day one of three at Del Mar was the unique High Jump competition under NCAA rules. Bringing the bar down three times meant elimination. Clearing the bar meant raising it. The last truck that could still clear the bar was the winner. In the afternoon show, Bounty Hunter not only won but kept all four tires still on with a height of 8 feet, 2 inches. The evening show started the showdown. First, the 1934 Ford Coupe with Kelvin at the wheel threw down the gauntlet of 9 feet, 3 inches. Jimmy had the officials raise the bar even higher and still cleared it. Not to be outdone, Iron Outlaw and Detour jumped in to help their teammates. But when those two left the building, the game of “Top this!” truly began. It went on and on until the bar couldn’t go any higher. At a venue record 10 feet, 9 inches, Jimmy and Kelvin would tie for the win. But things were just getting started.

Day two was a wheelie competition. Longer distance plus higher vertical equaled more points. Trent Montgomery had come a long way in one day from smashing the High Jump bar the day before with an honorable run in the evening that held the lead until the last two and finished the day in third place. The elder Ramer showed he meant business, getting the loudest applause of the show up to that point in Time Flys. But Jimmy Creten won the Wheelie Competition at Del Mar last year and started the repeat with the crowd roaring for him. In the evening show, Time Flys gave it one last shot with power, slap and sky wheelies all in the same run. But Bounty Hunter rarely shares the trophy a second time. Double wheelies, tons of momentum and excellent pre-wheelie air gave the Tonganoxie, KS native the Wheelie contest win for the second year in a row by better than 10 points over second place. With only a day of all or nothing freestyle to go at Del Mar, Kelvin had only one more try to prevent Bounty Hunter from cleaning house.

Day three was all out freestyle. Bounty Hunter only pulled further into the lead in his first run with a very high score. But the win did not come without a price. Moments before his time expired, Jimmy blew a rod in his engine. Despite the crew’s best efforts, Bounty was out for the day, ending his chances of a clean sweep. With that, all signs appeared to point to Kelvin Ramer sharing the crown with the Bounty Hunter driver. But Time Flys would also find engine trouble. Eric Swanson and Obsessed had finished third place every competition they entered. This was the third day of at least one competition for Eric. By getting scores on the board and finishing his run, third time was the charm for Eric to take the day win. With three different winners in three days, the competition in the Del Mar arena remains tighter than ever.

Along with the monsters, trophy karts started the show on days one and two, while scaled down versions of mid-twentieth century dirt racing jalopies called mini dwarf cars did on day three. Next on the calendar for us is just a few hours up the road at the Fairplex in Pomona, CA, for the annual KaBoom with freestyle motocross, monster trucks and fireworks extravaganza. Well then, thank you for reading, a warm thank you to John Borba and WGAS Motorsports for their hospitality, enjoy the photos and cheer on!

Photo Gallery

All content copyright TheMonsterBlog.com 2013.

The Allen Report: Stadium Super Trucks – Los Angeles, CA 2013

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

This time on “The Allen Report”, we follow Robby Gordon’s Stadium Super Trucks series to the venue where Mickey Thompson first created stadium off road racing: the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Monster trucks had not been here since the dusk of the 1990s. In addition, stadium off road racing had not happened at the Coliseum for almost 20 years. So history was being made all night long. The mechanical gladiators of the night included not one, not two, but four Bigfoot trucks. Counterattacking the Bigfoot invasion were Darren Migues and Trent Montgomery in Bounty Hunter Blue and Iron Outlaw. The father and son Swanson team of Rick and Eric ran their new trophy truck bodies to wrap up the starting grid. Rick’s was purple and Eric’s was his signature blue.

The monsters had to race roundy-round “Chicago Style” on a half-blacktop, half dirt figure 8 track with a crossover jump in the middle with the winner first back to his starting jump. Once each lap, the drivers had to climb towards, drive through and around and free fall back down from the venue’s world famous arches. Getting a 12 foot wide monster truck through a 13 foot wide arch twice proved a formidable task.

Bigfoot trucks are always tough on long courses, as evidenced by every spot in the semi finals occupied by a team Bigfoot truck. The end of the night came a little sooner for Phoenix Champion Darren Migues, who saw his chances at repeating slip away when he had to back up to avoid cutting a turn beyond the arches too sharp. With two Bigfoot relative newcomers in one semi-final and two veterans of the same team in the other, the original monster truck team’s domination was unstoppable. The world’s only cow-themed monster continued to tame the tough track with a win over Kyle Doyle and Firestone #14 in the first semi-final race. Larry Swim and SPEED Energy #19 bested Dan Runte and Summit #18 to meet “Bessie” in the finals.

In the feature, Darron Schnell finally fired a blank as Larry Swim went on to victory for his truck’s sponsor, SPEED Energy, which made it an all orange night for eventual SST main event winner Robby Gordon. In other action, a former competitor in the Mickey Thompson Off Road Series named Jerry Whelchel was shown the money with a win in the Super Buggies main event.

Next up for us at “The Allen Report” is a monster marathon of three back to back days at the San Diego County Fair and the annual 4th of July Pomona, California, KaBoom event, all put together by our friends at WGAS Motorsports. That being said, thanks for reading, we wish much success to SST, enjoy the photos and cheer on!

Photo Gallery

All content copyright TheMonsterBlog.com 2013.

The Allen Report: Stadium Super Trucks – Glendale, AZ 2013

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

This time on “The Allen Report”, we cover NASCAR and off road favorite Robby Gordon’s effort to revive Mickey Thompson style stadium off road racing. The inaugural event of Robby Gordon’s Stadium Super Trucks featured eight of the best monster trucks in the west and it was just down the road from us at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. No less than five Bigfoot trucks were in the house. The rest of the competition was Darren Migues and Bounty Hunter along with the father and son team of Rick and Eric Swanson running special bodies on their Obsessed and Obsession chassis.

The first ever SST race featured a rare occurrence in that racing would be the only competition for the monster trucks. It was fascinating to watch the monsters battle each other side by side on an off road style track, with over-under jumps, hairpin turns and mid-race lane choice. Without a single true finish line, the winner would be first back to his starting line jump.

Once the quarter finals were complete, only Dan Runte and Larry Swim were still alive for Team Bigfoot with Bounty Hunter and Eric Swanson taking the other two spots in the semis. Darren was just too fast for Dan’s new Autism Speaks Bigfoot #18, but Larry Swim in the SPEED Energy Bigfoot machine downed Eric’s bright purple trophy truck to set up a classic Bounty Hunter/Bigfoot 2-lap finale.

In the main event, Bounty Hunter had the inside lane at his starting point and took full advantage of the route’s benefits. Despite Larry’s best efforts, the first ever Stadium Super Trucks Monster Truck Division Champion was Darren Migues and Bounty Hunter.

In front of a modest crowd, the first ever win of the Stadium Super Trucks main event, the “big show” of the series, went to Rob MacCachren. Rob is a former champion of SST’s predecessor, the Mickey Thompson Off Road Championship Gran Prix and was clearly thrilled to receive the first ever main event trophy. So, until you hear from us at “The Allen Report” again, thanks to University of Phoenix Stadium for their hospitality, thank you for reading, enjoy the photos and cheer on!

Photo Gallery

All content copyright TheMonsterBlog.com 2013.

The Allen Report: Speedworld Off Road Park Exhibition – Surprise, AZ 2012

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

We at The Allen Report were fortunate enough to have two monster trucks perform practically in “our backyard” at racing facility Speedworld Off Road Park in West Phoenix for the very first time. Eric Swanson, as usual, piloted Obsessed while his father Rick was at the helm of the new WrongWay Rick.

Much to the delight of the crowd, both monsters gave special pair freestyles especially for the short course off-road racing fans in attendance. Both Rick and Eric put on a great show, which was a great addition to coverage schedule as the year winds down.

Thank you for reading, a special thanks to Speedworld for their hospitality, enjoy the photos, and cheer on!

Photo Gallery

All content copyright TheMonsterBlog.com 2012.

Obsession Racing 2012 Press Release #9

(Menifee, California – Obsession Racing PR – By Jill Swanson) – September was the month for Eric to shine! We started off September 1st in Tijuana, Mexico for nVivo Live Events. This was Eric’s first show in Mexico and the first time for Mexico to see Wrongway Rick. The two were a big success! The show was a sold out stadium show featuring racing and freestyle competitions.

In racing Eric took his truck Obsessed to the finals against Jimmy Creten in Bounty Hunter. Everyone was impressed with his racing skills and it made us proud! In freestyle the fans really enjoyed the concept of the Wrongway Rick truck. Rick put on a fantastic show that put him in the upper half of the freestyle competition. Then Eric went out to prove that racing was not his only talent. He caught big air on everything that he hit and did some extremely fast donuts and kept up a great momentum. Unfortunately on his last big jump he blew a rear steering line when he landed that caused the truck to roll. The fans were happy to see Eric out of the truck and on his feet! After thorough inspection on his truck there was no structural damage just some fiberglass work and the culprit steering line!

Eric Swanson goes for a wild ride in Tijuana as Obsessed ends up on its lid.

We had an event immediately following our Mexico show for WGAS Motorsports in Pomona, California on Thursday night. This event was scheduled for us to run only one truck. Since Eric’s truck Obsessed had some work to be done to it and wouldn’t look presentable, we decided to use Wrongway Rick. Eric was scheduled to run the event so we decided to have him drive Rick’s Wrongway Rick truck for the show. He did a great job in it! He pulled off a lot of wheelies and caught major air off of the double jump! We were all very impressed how he handled the truck because it is so very different than an ordinary monster truck.

Eric Swanson pilots Wrongway Rick for the first time in Pomona.

Our last show in September was for Arizona Short Course Racing. We had both trucks for this event. Eric and Rick did a couple of rounds of exhibition freestyle. This was the first time that they had monster trucks at their events. They felt that with having the monster trucks it would draw more of a crowd and widen their fan base. Having the trucks there was very successful for the Arizona Short Course Racing folks. Rick and Eric put on a great show for them. The crowd really liked it when Eric did a wheelie that ended up on one tire and we were grateful that he was able to keep it in control and save it! They are already looking into having us next year.

We want to thank all of the promoters for putting on the events and a special thanks to our friend Frankie and his family for all of their hard work and support! Our next event for October will be in Red Bluff California for the West Coast Nationals.

For more information on Obsession Racing and the Wrongway Rick, Obsessed and Obsession monster trucks, visit us online at www.ObsessionRacing.com.

Obsession Racing 2012 Press Release #8

(Menifee, California – Obession Racing PR – By Jill Swanson) – The Obsession Racing team had two events in August. The first event was at the Salinas, California Rodeo Grounds. Our displays to promote this show started on the 7th and continued through the 10th. On Saturday the 11th we had an open pit party. This pit party consisted of all the monster trucks and drivers along with the freestyle motocross riders signing autographs. There was a live band and BBQ for all of the fans & families to enjoy before starting off the event. What makes this pit party so large is that it is held on the front grounds of the complex open to everyone.

Rick Swanson airs out Wrongway Rick in Salinas!

This show had a very unique track. It had both left and right turns in the course. Both of the trucks did very well in racing. In freestyle Eric caught the largest amount of air of the show! We have been attending the Salinas show for many years. It is always good to see long term fans and it a pleasure always to make new ones.

Eric Swanson with a big wheelie in Salinas!

Our next show we headed to Grants Pass, Oregon for California Trucks & Stuff. Eric wasn’t able to attend this show due to school starting. We had Jimmy Lehnertz drive Eric’s truck in his place and Rick drove his new truck Wrong Way Rick. This was a two night show with freestyle only. Jimmy and Rick were added attractions for the Grants Pass Fair Tough Truck competition. This show attracts fifty plus tough trucks per night. After they are through with racing the crew from California Trucks & Stuff set up car stacks for the Monster Trucks to freestyle. Everything went smoothly and the crowd was very pleased with their performances!

We would like to thank Jimmy Lehnertz and his Father Tom for helping out Obsession Racing and doing a phenomenal job once again! Also a big thanks to Randy & Sherry Smallwood for all of their hard work and hospitality for making this show a huge success.

Keep up with all of our latest news and updates at www.ObsessionRacing.com!

The Allen Report: Kaboom Monster Truck Show – Pomona, CA 2012

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

The annual KaBoom! Event in Pomona, CA, has been sellout every year since its inception in 2002. Its 10th birthday was celebrated side by side with America’s birthday by again being held on the 4th of July. The Monster Trucks performing were Jimmy Creten in bounty Hunter, Geno Kinal in Iron Outlaw, Kelvin Ramer in Time Flys, Rosalee Ramer in Detour and Eric Swanson in Obsessed.

To get the crowd pumped up for the monster trucks, four of the most fearless freestyle motocross riders you could find had the crowd screaming for the favorite – The Backflip, and the riders, including Metal Mulisha representative Jimmy Fitzpatrick, delivered.

But the show soon became a nightmare for Jimmy Creten really fast. Despite a bye all the way to the finals where Iron Outlaw joined him, the former World Champion broke a ring and pinion in the front differential right off the starting line of the Chicago-style, Roundy-round course, causing him to wash out on both turns, and giving up the win to his teammate, Iron Outlaw. The front end mechanical goblins, which had followed him up to Pomona from Del Mar, proved too much for Jimmy to fix in time and the entertainer had to have the curtain come down early.

Similarly, Eric Swanson in Obsessed lost second gear and had difficulty finishing his freestyle run, just barely clearing the big center jump. Iron Outlaw and Kelvin Ramer in Time Flys performed the duet freestyle finale, crashing through the extra long mobile home much to the crowd’s excitement. Iron Outlaw was declared the freestyle winner with Rosalee and Detour finishing a strong second.

The fans forgot all about being sad about Bounty Hunter breaking when the opening fireworks went off, saying “goodbye” and “thank you for coming” with a BANG!

Next for us at “The Allen Report” is one of the biggest monster truck shows of the summer. Every August, some of the biggest players of the monster truck game gather at the Rocky Mountain Raceways in Wet Valley City, Utah for a “Clash of the Titans”. “The Allen Report” will be there to cover the activities. Thank you for reading, a special thanks to John Borba and WGAS Motorsports for their wonderful hospitality, enjoy the photos and cheer on!

Photo Gallery

All content copyright TheMonsterBlog.com 2012.

The Allen Report: Monster Truck Show – Del Mar, CA 2012

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

This edition of “The Allen Report” comes to you from Del Mar, California where Jimmy Creten in the Bounty Hunter is thinking San Diego County Fair Championship three-peat. Rick Swanson has introduced a new body design called WrongWay Rick. The other participants were Kelvin Ramer and Time Flys, the Youngest Female Professional Monster Truck Driver in the World, Rosalee Ramer in Detour, Eric Swanson the Youngest Professional Male driver in the World in Obsessed and Russell Steeley in Iron Outlaw.

The monsters would be competing at the San Diego County Fair in Del Mar in two shows a day for four days with a different contest each day. The combined scores from both shows in the same day would determine the day’s winner. Day 1 consisted of a high jump contest. Detour jumped 9 feet 2 inches in the first afternoon show and a roof-raising 12 feet 8 inches for a day total of 21 feet, 10 in to take the first win.

Day 2 was a wheelie contest day. This saw Eric Swanson nail a well executed wheelie in Obsessed, but broke a ring and pinion a monster at the same time. However, Jimmy Creten had his game together, never once getting a wheelie that was less than vertical and the length of the floor to take the win.

Day 3 featured a long jump contest with football field style measurements. Fan favorite Time Flys jumped a respectable 64 feet but that was only good enough for 4th place in the early afternoon show. But then came the late afternoon show and the 1934 Ford flew a neck wrenching 71 feet. These two distances made him the 3rd different winner in 3 days of competition.

The 4th and final day was a full blown freestyle. The trophy cart races were fast and furious, but the crowd was anxious to get down to the meat and potatoes. Bounty Hunter did not disappoint. His perfect 40 in both shows of the day made Jimmy Creten a 3 time San Diego County Fair Undisputed Champion.

Next up for us at “The Allen Report” will be the 4th of July celebration called simply KaBoom! at the Fairplex in Pomona, CA. Many thanks for reading, a special thanks to John Borba and WGAS Motorsports for their hospitality and access to the pits and drivers, enjoy the photos and cheer on!

Photo Gallery

All content copyright TheMonsterBlog.com 2012.