Apr 9 - A Triple Crown
There were three big dome event this weekend and Adam Anderson, Michael Vaters II, and Jacob Ladwig all won on their respective big stages. Anderson remained in top form on the Monster Jam Stadium series, Vaters won the famous Monster Spectacular in Montreal, and Ladwig took home the trophy at the CFP Grand Nationals in Pocatello.
Brandon Budd broke Larry Swim’s winning streak in Loveland, Colorado and earned himself big points in the standings. Swim himself won the other two events and is now in the Top 5. Mark List, Morgan Kane, and Paul Jensen were also dominate at their respective events and made their own moves towards the top.
This was a wild and hectic weekend in the monster truck world with 36 events and 10 promoters in action all across the country. While settling in to the rhythm of race reporting, I’ve failed to take the time to mention all the folks who help out with gathering this results, so let me start this week. Thank you this week to (in no particular order) Bryan Wagner; Dallas Glenn-Rogers; Phil Vicinanza; Tim Howard; Scott Shay; Allison Turner; Preston Perez; Nick Davis; Kyle Coryea; and all of the hard-working staff with TheMonsterBlog, Traxxas Tour, the Extreme Monster Truck Nationals, the Toughest Monster Truck Tour, and of course Monster Jam who do such a great job posting results and replying to our incessant requests for information.
So far this season, we have reports from 511 of the 570 events on our schedule which is around a 91% report rate. Not too bad for the first year! Thanks again to everyone for helping, but stay alert because we’re not even halfway done with 2019 yet!
At the Cross Insurance Center, Teammates Tyler Cornelius, Jr. and Bill Solly each picked up wins on the Traxxas Tour over teammates Greg Winchenbach and Christopher Sawicki, respectively. Winchenbach claimed the third and final race of the weekend with Solly placing second.
COLORADO SPRINGS, COLORADO
Morgan Kane moves into the Top 20 after a successful weekend at the Broadmoor World Arena. Kane was a finalist in three of the four events and won the final two races over Justin Sipes in Megalodon. Camden Murphy won the first two of the weekend, opening the weekend with a victory over Bryan Wright. Murphy moves up 1 spot to 2nd place.
COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA
The Monster Jam Arena Championship had three events at the Colonial Life Arena, but racing was contested against the clock and not side-by-side so points were not awarded.
El Toro Loco driver Mark List won 2 of the 3 events and was a finalist all weekend at the Schottenstein Center. He moved up 7 spots into 21st place. List beat out Brandon Vinson in both of the afternoon races and lost to Matt Cody in Blue Thunder in the evening.
Two events for Monster Jam at the Thompson-Boling Arena, but both were run against the clock and so points were not awarded.
LITTLE ROCK, ARKANSAS
There were some big names competing in Little Rock this weekend. Jim Creten beat current World #1 Tyler Menninga at both events and has moved up to 6th place in the world. Tanner Root defeated former world champion Mark Hall in the semi-finals on Saturday before losing to Creten in the championship round. On Sunday, Mat Dishman knocked off Root in the semi-finals and then competed the racing victory over Creten in the finals.
Brandon Budd finally put an end to Larry Swim’s winning streak on the Toughest Monster Truck Tour when he beat out the Bigfoot driver during the semi-finals of the Saturday afternoon race. Budd went on to win in the finals over Kreg Christensen in Dragon Slayer to collect his third win of the season. Budd is now ranked in the Top 50 for the first time this season having risen up from a 105th place ranking back in middle-February. Larry Swim won the two evening events, both against Aaron Cain in Quad Chaos. With those wins, Swim is now in the Top 5 in the world.
Chris Arel had another big line-up in the Olympic Stadium in Montreal as 14 top independent teams competed on a tricky J-turn track. In the top half of the bracket, Paul Breaud eliminated Jim Koehler in the quarter finals and then got past Eddie Como in Anger Management in the semis. Michael Vaters II drove his Overkill Evolution truck past father Michael Vaters I in Black Stallion in the bottom half of the semi-finals. In the final round, Vaters II beat out Breaud in a close race for his 3rd win of the season. It was also his 10th recorded event of the season which made him eligible for the world rankings. And, the big points from this big event allowed him to enter the rankings in 30th place. Breaud gained 5 spots in the ranking with his 5th final-round appearance of the year.
The CFP No Limits tour crowned their champion this past weekend in Pocatello, Idaho. Sam Sturges in Unnamed & Untamed had struggled in racing earlier in the season but made up for it at the Grand Nationals with an opening round win over Rodney Tweedy in Snake Bite. Sturges then advanced past an ailing Ghost Ryder driven by eventual series champion Larry Quick. Meanwhile, teammate Jacob Ladwig beat out Shannon Quick in the first round and then took out Michael Miller in Bigfoot in the semis. In the finals, Ladwig was smooth and straight while Sturges stumbled coming out of the turn and recorded his 4th win in 6 events this season.
Krazy Train’s Triton Robbins won twice at the Extreme Monster Truck Nationals at the Oglethrope Speedway to double his yearly total. Denver Echternkamp in Venom won on Friday. Brandan Tulachka in Jus’ Get ‘Er Done II was the runner-up in all three events.
There was no racing at the Malicious Monster Truck Tour event in Douglas County this weekend, but they will have two big events next weekend in San Tan Valley and Puyallup with racing brackets expected at both.
SANTA MARIA, CALIFORNIA
The All Star Monster Truck Tour ran on a big Chicago-style track at the Raceway in Santa Maria and Paul Jensen drove his Kamikaze truck to the win both nights. He defeated brother Mikeal Christensen in Vendetta on Friday and Rick Swanson with Obsession on Saturday. Those two wins also enabled Jensen to move into the Top Ten in the world for the first time this season.
SYRACUSE, NEW YORK
The biggest of the three big stadium shows this weekend was Monster Jam in the Carrier Dome and it was Adam Anderson once again taking the win. After defeating arch-rival Neil Elliot in a semi-finals nail-biter, he knocked off Scott Buetow in El Toro Loco Ice in the championship round. Anderson gained a spot in the standings as is now 3rd. Buetow gained 9 spots and is now with arm’s reach of the Top 50.
Preston Perez in Tantrum beat out Jeff Murphy in Fatal Attraction at the Monster Mash in Texarkana. It was his 2nd racing win of the season.
WINSTON-SALEM, NORTH CAROLINA
The only event not reported for this weekend was the Sunday afternoon race in Winston-Salem which was won by Darron Schnell in Bigfoot. We were able to award points on Saturday, though, when Christian Norman in the Hot Wheels Racing #1 defeated Derick Anson in the finals.
A light weekend for Monster Jam with only 3 tours in action. World #1 Tyler Menninga will faceoff with Colton Eichelberger, Tanner Root, and the Hall Brothers in Austin, Texas. Adam Anderson and Neil Elliot take their feud into smaller confines with a trio of events in Hamilton, Ontario. And Jim Creten, Ryan Anderson, Tom Meents, and Camden Murphy look to gain in the standings with a stadium event in Santa Clara, California.
The Traxxas Tour is staying in Maine for another weekend with three events in Portland. They also have a tough field running at the Silver Dollar Speedway in Chico, California including Top Ten driver Paul Jensen in Kamikaze.
The Malicious Monster Truck Tour will be at the big annual event in Puyallup, Washington featuring a 10-truck line-up and will also be promoting a pair of races in San Tan Valley, Arizona.
The Toughest Monster Truck Tour concludes with one big showdown at the Alerus Center in Grand Forks, North Dakota, and the Hot Wheels Live tour has their final scheduled stop in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Pocatello winner Jacob Ladwig and three others will be running in 5 events over 3 days at the Maricopa County Fair in Phoenix, Arizona. Monster Truck Thunder will be in Churchrock, New Mexico and the Mega Monster Trucks Tour kicks off in Enid, Oklahoma.