Monster Photos: IMTM Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony & Reunion – Auburn, IN 2015

Event: 5th Annual International Monster Truck Museum Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony & Reunion
Venue: International Monster Truck Museum @ The American Heritage Village
Location: Auburn, Indiana
Date: November 13th-14th, 2015
Photographer: Danny Maass

Hall of Fame Class of 2015: Gene Patterson (Breen Boys Racing Toys/BIGFOOT 4×4), Alan Tura (Goliath), Billy Joe Miles (TNT Motorsports), David Morris (Equalizer) [Read more…]

The Allen Report: IMTM Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony & Reunion 2015

(Coverage By Christopher Allen, Photos By Jim Allen)

Weekend Recap

This time on “The Allen Report”, we make a trip by air to Auburn, Indiana, for the fifth consecutive year. Auburn is known as the former “little Detroit” where cars and racing have shaped the town since the 1930’s and still do, with a great number of automotive museums to attend. Once more, we went to the Kruse Automotive and Carriage Museum for the Fifth Annual International Monster Truck Museum Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony & Reunion. Nearly 300 people from places like Texas, Maryland and Washington State were in attendance to watch four iconic monster truck personalities become the twenty-second through twenty-fifth inductees into the International Monster Truck Museum Hall of Fame. A new record of both classic and current monster trucks were on display throughout the weekend.

• Team Bigfoot’s Original Monster Truck Bigfoot 1, the World’s Biggest Pickup Truck Bigfoot 5 and the World’s Only Electric Powered Monster Truck, Bigfoot 20.
• IMTM President and Creator Jeff Cook’s Shotgun Harry old school monster.
• First Hall of Fame class member Jeff Dane’s replica of the original King Kong.
• Andy Hoffman’s Nitecrawler tank, which was first Hall of Fame class member Allen Pezo’s Predator Tank earlier in its life.
• Regular attendee Thomas Borders’ 100% Monkey Business old school built monster.
• IMTM Vice President and third Hall of Fame class member Allen Pezo’s original Predator 1.
• First Hall of Fame class member Everett Jasmer brought both the 1988 TNT Monster Truck Challenge Champion USA-1 and its 2015 twin, driven by Roger Gauger of Quadzilla notoriety.
• Terry Woodcock’s recently restored original Cyclops
• Vaters Motorsports surprise truck, the restored original Equalizer

The Fifth International Monster Truck Hall of Fame class consisted of:
• Breen Boyz and Team Bigfoot driver legendary for his role as the “evil” Snake Bite driver Colt Cobra, Gene Patterson.
• Equalizer owner/driver David Morris
• Owner, builder and driver of twin engine monster truck GOLIATH, its faster racing twin GOLIATH’S REVENGE, the jet powered G Force and the Transtormer robot.
• And original TNT Motorsports promoter Billy Joe Miles.

On Friday, a meet and greet between the inductees, past and current monster truck owners, media and fans was held. Meanwhile, the family of Jeff Cook sold a wide variety of official IMTM merchandise exclusive to those attending. From large and small t-shirts to bumper stickers to mugs to pins, even rings, there was no shortage of items to choose from and all sales went to the museum. Several people set up display tables where merchandise of almost any kind conceivable was put on display for one and all to observe. One such case was second Hall of Fame class member Mike Welch who brought never before seen photos and merchandise from his thirty-plus years of travels and shows.

That evening, another classic monster truck was unveiled in the museum for the very first time, its restoration having been done under highly top secret conditions. To the thrill and amazement of the attendees, the tarp came off to reveal the original 1989 TNT Monster Truck Challenge Champion truck; incoming inductee David Morris’ red Equalizer.

On Saturday, an IMTM tradition continued with a Q&A and history discussion with the Hall of Fame inductees. Some stories were from the road and comical, others regarded monster truck industry related people who sadly had passed away at some point.

That night, a delicious meal was served as monster truck video footage exclusive to the IMTM was displayed for those in attendance and Army Armstrong entertained the diners. To get things started, numerous sponsors were thanked with a glass plaque featuring the sponsor’s name. As each new member of the International Monster Truck Hall of Fame was inducted, they received a standing ovation from the audience both on his way to the stage and accepting his induction plaque. At the end of the ceremony, another tradition went on as an auction was held to raise more money for the IMTM. With Kruse Automotive and Carriage Museum creator and owner Dean Kruse as auctioneer and items abound to bid on, the bidding drama over each item was intense.

And that’s a wrap for us at “The Allen Report” for 2015, as we plan for the holidays and anxiously look forward to first quarter of 2016. Well, thanks for reading, a special thank-you goes to Jeff Cook and the IMTM and Hall of Fame board of directors as well as all of our friends at for a moving and entertaining event. Thank you to all of our followers for reading, please enjoy the photos, don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Instagram under the name “Monster Truckin’ with Jim and Chris”, and cheer on!

Photo Gallery

All content copyright 2015.

Blast From The Past: Hamburg, NY 1987 – “A Grimm Prospect”

Welcome back, ladies and gentlemen, to the “Blast from the Past’ blog where I, TMB Videographer Colby Marshall, review classic and especially not-so-classic shows from the glory days of monster truck competition. I’ll be doing this in a light-hearted, playfully sarcastic manner so don’t take offense, and let’s all sit back, have a few laughs and remember the way things used to be. Yes that’s right fans, I am back again…trucker hat, ringer shirt, cowboy boots, tight jeans and all…for another rousing romp of old school monster mayhem. This time out, it is TNT Motorsports in Hamburg, NY circa 1987 (YouTube would be a good place to look if you want to follow along). And boy-oh-boy do we have a treat for you all this time. There he is, microphone in hand, its DAVE GRIMM!!! I promise two things…incomprehensible yelling and ad nausea repetition. Don’t believe me? Let’s go to the first round to find out. The trucks will drag race over a large dirt roller, then two sets of four cars and finish at the top of another dirt roller.

Pulling to the line, its Allen “Dick Clark ain’t got nothing on me because I still look the same as I always have” Pezo taking on Steve “Not the gas stations” Hess in Nitemare. Senior official and expert flagman Ed Hart waves the green flag…no, wait, he waves the red flag…actually, he waves both of them for some odd reason. The drivers look at each other in a confused manner, shrug their shoulders, and mutually decide to start the race anyways. Rather than describing this race, I am going to turn to the transcript of Mr. Grimm’s expert analysis of this epic encounter:

“Here we go! Here we go! Here come the monster trucks! Here come the monster trucks! Here they come! Here they come! They’re on their way! Here comes the Chevrolet! Here…OH THERE THEY GO! OH WOAH! There they come. Here comes Nitemare! Here comes (checks flash card) the Lone Eagle. There they comes…OH! OHH! OHHHH! Hit em Hit em Hit em Hit em Hit em Hit em. There they go! There they go! There they go! Its gonna beeee the Looooooooone Eagle!”

Thanks, Dave! Allen Pezo moves on by a truck length.

For our second race, Gayle Mefford brings out Stomper 1 to the line. In the other lane, its (according to the on screen graphics) Barry Packaid in Little Bear Foot. And, in case you were wondering, you empty the packet of Packaid into a 2-quart pitcher, add a cup of sugar and water, then stir vigorously until dissolved for a tasty, refreshing beverage. Stomper leaves the line, while Barry Packaid stays put and tries to make sense of the directions I just gave. Stomper heads for the cars and Mefford absolutely airs out that uber-heavy truck, all but clearing the cars and sending the flags in the bed flying in all directions. From the sound of things, Dave Grimm had some combination of a heart attack, a stroke, his underwear on too tight, puberty and a velociraptor attack all at the same time, as he screeched into the microphone over this quite impressive jump. Oh, and apparently Barry finished off his glass of Packaid and decided to start the race. He makes it as far as the first car set before shutting down again. Dave Grimm tells us liquid is coming out of the truck. I failed to mention that adult supervision is required when making Packaid, and most of the rest spilled out of the truck and onto the track. My bad. Stomper moves on.

Jon Breen brings out Mad Dog, painted mostly yellow, for the third race of the first round, taking on Star Monster. It wears a very simple black and gray paint scheme that I think looks fantastic. Unfortunately, looking fantastic wasn’t enough to take down what was one of the few purpose-built race trucks trucks at the time. Mad Dog wins by a lot.

Sly Stallone and the Governator get to the chahppahs and line up for this race. It’s Rambo and Terminator in a battle of 1980’s action movies starring guys who talk funny. They are off and we go back to Dave Grimm for the call…

“Terminator and Rambo…Terminator and Rambo…Rambo on the inside, Terminator on the outside…Termbo and Raminator…” Wait, WHAT?!? Raminator?!? In 1987? I knew those Rams were fast, but so fast that they hit 88MPH, flipped on the flux capacitor, and traveled back in time to win an obscure race in New York? Apparently so. Mark Hall wins the race and moves…no. Upon further review, it was simply Dave Grimm getting ahead of himself and misspeaking the names of the trucks. What a let down! Tim Hall, if you are reading this, you guys would have made this race much more interesting. And safe. Rambo goes all bouncy like it has barely working, primitive suspension (which NEVER happened in the 1980’s) and almost runs over a cameraman. Terminator and Jerry Richmond win this one, and our intrepid videographer retreats to the third stall in the men’s room to change his shorts.

That brings us to the Semi-Fineals. I spelled it that way because that is the way it is spelled on screen. Remember our rule…1980’s television broadcasts are NEVER wrong. Ever. Allen Pezo in Lone Eagle takes on Gayle Mefford in Stomper. Interesting to note that Stomper appears to have about half the air pressure in its tires this round. I’m willing to bet that inversely correlates to the amount of pressure on Mr. Mefford’s kidneys after that air shot in round one. Stomper looks a bit gimpy in this one, with the left front leaning pretty bad. This opens things up, and like a “predator”, Allen Pezo takes advantage and moves on to the finals. Dave screams, “WE HAVE HAD AN UPSET!” That and a REALLY bad joke from the writer of this article, Dave.

“There we go ladies and gentlemen! Take off! Take off! Take off!” signals the beginning of an epic contest between Terminator and Mad Dog. Terminator uses about 450 feet to runs this 300 foot race as Jerry Richmond zig-zags across the track. Jon Breen keeps ‘er straight and narrow and races out ahead to an easy victory. As he crosses the line, yet another velociraptor attacks Dave Grimm as he screams at something happening to Terminator that we never see. “WOAHAHAHHHA! Mad Dog is gonna win it with ease. Terminator will finish…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………behind.”

Final round time it is, as Jon Breen and Jerry Richmond pull to the line. Wait, didn’t that JUST happen? Well, the on-screen graphics strike again. It’s actually Mad Dog and Jon Breen taking on Allen Pezo and Lone Eagle. Voice over guy tells us that they are both Chebbies. Thanks, voice over guy. He goes on to explain that Mad Dog is specially constructed for just this kind of competition. So, Mad Dog can only win if there is non-carbonated soft drink, TERRIBLE announcing, time travel, Mark Hall and vicious dinosaur attacks involved in the event. Well, it just so happens to be Jon Breen’s lucky day. In the annals of monster truck coverage, there are certain calls that transcend the sport and become a thing of legend. The late, great Jan Gabriel, Army Armstrong, Scott Douglas. All have made their mark on this industry with legendary race calls and became legends in their own right. They did so by NEVER spouting lines like the one that follows:

“Mad Dog on his way. Mad Dog on his way. Mad Dog on his way. MAD DOG ON HIS WAAAYY! Mad Dog on his way. And Mad Dog is gonna win it.”

Inspiring. Voice over guy is back and tells us that Mad Dog is built for running. And rabies shots. That’s not true. I made that last part up because I thought it was funny. For some odd reason, we go to an on-track announcer that didn’t appear at any other time during this competition. He interviews Jon Breen who tells us the truck is built for circuit racing. Circuit racing? For some odd reason I pictured Jenson Button quaking in his driving suit as he looks in the rear view of his McLaren and sees the engineering marvel that was Mad Dog. That wing could be intimidating.

This event is an interesting one to me. Here we have a long, straight line course at a time that TNT had not yet settled on this as their defacto track of choice. This was a strange mix of trucks, including what is one of the few TNT TV appearances of Lil’ Bearfoot. With the exception of Mad Dog, these were “stage one” trucks built for show and for exhibition crushing. I always found events like this way more interesting, as trucks that had no business racing bounced all over the place, performed terribly, but still looked amazing doing it. Well, my six month old has managed to find an l.e.d. flashlight and is beating on the computer chair with it. I had better get going. Until next time, OLD SCHOOL RULES!