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  • MTROC Staff

This Week in Monster Truck Racing - May 17-20, 2024

* Zack Garner wins World Finals with instant classic

** John Gordon is George Carpenter Cup winner on Virginia Beach

*** Aaron Basl wins Team Bigfoot’s first event this season




===== WEEKEND RECAP FOR MAY 17th – 20th, 2024 =====

What an awesome weekend for monster truck racing! The World Finals were intense with a challenging racing track, upsets galore, and one of the most exciting and emotional championship races we’ve seen in years. Zack Garner laid down 5 of the 10 fastest times and took out big names includes defending champion Tristan England to win the World Finals in his first try. Garner jumped ahead of John Gordon for 7th place and is currently the highest-ranked independent driver in the sport.

John Gordon himself won 2 of 4 events in Virginia Beach to claim the George Carpenter Cup with MTX at the largest independent event of the weekend. Speaking of large independent events, we’ve got a huge 10-truck field in Sarver, Pennsylvania this weekend!

Jacob Ladwig had his 8-race winning streak come to an end in Idaho Falls at the hands of another driver who has had an 8–race winning streak this season: Aaron Basl. Basl was filling for Josh Baumgartner and drove the Bigfoot truck this weekend and actually scored the first racing victory for The Original Monster Truck. Bigfoot has been running almost exclusively with Hot Wheels Live which does not include any racing.

This weekend also saw Preston Collins win his 28th race of the season; incredibly fast drag racing in Lancaster, Pennsylvania and Dunkirk, New York; and a short holiday-weekend circuit for Monster Spectacular in Canada. Keep reading below for more recaps.

Thank you to everyone who reported results to us this weekend: Mark Werner, Nick Davis, Nate Bay, Kaley Engstrom, Preston Collins, Dallas Glenn-Rogers, Connor McNeil, Zhenya Tilley, Nick Wishard, Aaron Basl, Max Gillie, Rob Poutre, Gideon Bernard, Kirk Nagy, Phil Vicinanza, and everyone who posted videos and photos online!





1 ) Ryan Anderson - 9673/322.43 : 2+1=3 : 30/15

2 ) Tyler Menninga - 10643/236.51 : 1+3=4 : 45/26

3 ) Adam Anderson - 7724/241.38 : 4+2=6 : 32/9

4 ) Tristan England - 5723/228.92 : 10+4=14 : 25/6

5 ) Camden Murphy - 5769/206.04 : 9+5=14 : 28/6


6 ) Armando Castro - 7502/153.1 : 5+9=14 : 49/13

7 ) Zack Garner - 6104/160.63 : 8+8=16 : 38/13

8 ) John Gordon - 5552/191.45 : 11+6=17 : 29/3

9 ) Dalton Widner - 8593/140.87 : 3+15=18 : 61/28

10) Weston Anderson - 6164/140.09 : 7+17=24 : 44/16


11) Mikeal Christensen - 4786/140.76 : 15+16=31 : 34/4

12) Bari Musawwir - 6894/111.19 : 6+25=31 : 62/10

13) Jack Brown - 4356/145.2 : 18+14=32 : 30/10

14) Todd LeDuc - 4148/148.14 : 21+12=33 : 28/1

15) Coty Saucier - 3712/161.39 : 27+7=34 : 23/8


16) Jon Zimmer Jr - 3879/149.19 : 24+10=34 : 26/15

17) Colt Stephens - 5287/120.16 : 13+21=34 : 44/2

18) Rob Poutre - 4516/125.44 : 16+20=36 : 36/14

19) Jamie Sullivan - 4816/117.46 : 14+22=36 : 41/10

20) Daron Basl - 4282/129.76 : 20+18=38 : 33/9


===== BISMARCK, ND =====

This Hot Wheels Live event did not include side-by-side racing and so points were not awarded.


===== BLACK CREEK, BC =====

5/17 Fri Ngt: BILL PAYNE [Rock Star] defeated Marvin Anderson [Identity Theft]

5/18 Sat Ngt: BILL PAYNE [Rock Star] defeated Marvin Anderson [Identity Theft]

5/19 Sun Aft: MARVIN ANDERSON [Identity Theft] defeated Travis Ybarra [Spitfire]

Marvin Anderson has been a regular in the finals this year and he picked up 3 more finals and his 2nd recorded win of the season at Saratoga Speedway in British Columbia. Bill Payne took the first two nights to increase his win total to 15 in 31 events.



5/18 Sat Aft: JACK MONKHOUSE [Wacky Doo] defeated Hayden McLeary [Wicked]

5/19 Sun Aft: We do not have results from this event

Wacky Doo has gotten it done this season on the Monster Truck Mania Live tour as Jack Monkhouse grabbed another win, giving him at least 1 win in each of the 3 cities on tour.


===== BUTLER, IN =====

This Monster Truck Musem event did not include side-by-side racing and so points were not awarded.


===== CONROE, TX =====

5/18 Sat Aft: PRESTON COLLINS [Outlaw] defeated Adam Wilson [Sheriff]

5/18 Sat Ngt: JERRY FURAJTER [Shark Attack] defeated Devin Jones [T-Rex]

Preston Collins is now tied with Dalton Widner with 28 racing wins this season, which is the most of any driver. He wasn’t able to get to 29 on Saturday night in Conroe as Jerry Furajter came out on top instead with his 5th of the year and first in a month. The Monster Truck Wars is taking some time off for the summer but should be back in action before the 2024 Open Championship season is done so their drivers will still have a few more chances to score points and wins.


===== DUNKIRK, NY =====

5/18 Sat Ngt: BRANDON DERROW [Bad News Travels Fast] defeated Triton Robbins [Krazy Train]

Rain cancelled the Overdrive event on Friday in Dunkirk but a fleet of fast tracks made up for it with some solid drag racing on Saturday. Brandon Derrow has gotten a few more early-year event in this season and has made good use of them. He’s on a 3-race winning streak heading into the final weekend of June. He has 11 scores events and needs 9 more to break into the standings.  


===== IDAHO FALLS, ID =====

5/17 Fri Ngt: JACOB LADWIG [Rat Attack] defeated Brandon Swick [Geronimo Reincarnated]

5/18 Sat Ngt: AARON BASL [Bigfoot] defeated Jacob Ladwig [Rat Attack]

Jacob Ladwig extended his Insanity Tour winning streak to 8 with his Friday night win in Idaho Falls but could go no further than that. He lost out to Tim Manchester in Hillbilly on Saturday night but got to replace a broken Hillbilly in the finals. There he met with Aaron Basl who was filling in behind the wheel of Josh Baumgartner’s Bigfoot. Basl—who has his own 8-race winning streak earlier in the season—raced past Ladwig to record the first racing victory for Team Bigfoot this season (can you believe it?). The Original Monster Truck has been spending all their time on the Hot Wheels Live tour which does not include side-by-side racing. For Basl, though, he HAS been racing and now has 8 wins in his last 11 events and moves up 2 spots into the Top 25.


===== INGLEWOOD, CA =====

5/17 Fri Aft: DAVID OLFERT [Velociraptor] defeated Mikeal Christensen [Vendetta]

5/18 Sat Ngt: ZACK GARNER [Wild Side] defeated Tristan England [JCB DIGatron]

The racing at this year’s Monster Jam World Finals was some of the best in the event’s history! The S-course was both fast and technical and challenged the drivers with tough jumps and tricky turns which results in a number of unexpected upsets, close finishes, and edge-of-your-seat action the entire night.

Team Throttle Monster put two trucks into the finals of the Last Chance Qualifier. Since this was a full separate bracket we were able to score it for points giving David Olfert a 320 point boost in the standings. His win also gave him the final qualifying spot for the World Finals main bracket where he upset Ryan Anderson in the second round with one of the nicest inside turns of the entire event. His 3rd place finish there got him another 348 points. That takes him up 7 spots to 23rd. LCQ runner-up Mike Christensen also gained 3 spots and is now in 11th.

The main bracket was intense and unexpected. Cole Venard and Blake Granger missed their heats due to breakage. Defending Monster Jam World Finals Racing champion Tristan England proved his skill by making it to the finals for a second year in a row through a path that saw him eliminate fast qualifier Tyler Menninga, Guinness World Record holder Bryce Kenny, LCQ hero David Olfert, and a sneaky fast Brianna Mahon in Scooby-Doo!

Jamie Sullivan and Brianna Mahon were some of the most consistently fast drivers as they competed in multiple rounds and scored impressive victories over Cory Rummell and Weston Anderson (Sullivan) and Coty Saucier (Mahon). Team Grave Digger qualified 3 trucks to first round bye runs, but the entire team (Tyler Menninga, Adam Anderson, Weston Anderson, and Krysten Anderson) plus brother Ryan in Son-Uva-Digger were knocked out before the quarter finals in one of the biggest shocks of the night.

Camden Murphy once again suffered mechanical problems that knocked him out of the event after his second round win over Armando Castro. Bari Musawwir showed his racing skill again as he advanced to the semi-finals in another strong World Finals showing for Zombie.

Obviously I’m burying the lede and the biggest triumph of the night as young, independent driver Zack Garner made a huge statement by eliminating Jim Koehler, Adam Anderson (with penalty), Dalton Widner, Bari Musawwir, and defending champion Tristan England to win the Monster Jam World Finals Racing championship in his first try! The win was no fluke. Any fan of the Open Championship knows that Garner has been a Top Ten racer for the past few years. Furthermore, he was the most consistent driver all night, turning in 5 of the 10 fastest laps and never varying by more than 3/10ths of a second in an incredible show of consistency. He also had the fastest average time of all drivers. The win was especially touching as Zack’s father Jamey was overcome with joy as his son advanced through the round and showed the fans in Los Angeles and the fans watching live on YouTube how incredible and meaningful monster truck racing can be. This was an instant classic event and hopefully signs of many more great things to come as Monster Jam continues their resurgence as a competition-focused promoter.

For Garner, this was his 13th win of the season and obviously the biggest. He was rewarded with 580 Open Championship points and moves into 7th place as the highest-ranked independent driver in the sport. He just barely edges out John Gordon who won the George Carpenter Cup on Virginia Beach this weekend. Garner is a long way from the podium, but 4th place is within reach. He needs about 1400 more points to catch Tristan England for that spot but he’ll have all summer to try.



===== MONCTON, NB =====

5/19 Sun Aft: MICHAEL VATERS II [Overkill Evolution] defeated Michael Vaters I [Black Stallion]

Michael Vaters II won again on the short 3-stop tour with Monster Spectacular and this one DOES count for points. He beats father Mike again on a concrete holeshot track.


===== QUARRYVILLE, PA =====

5/18 Sat Ngt: CEEJAY RETTEW [Stinger Unleashed] defeated Greg Winchenbach [Crushstation]

The trucks were looking super fast at The Buck this weekend despite some muddy conditions. The two-jump drag course allowed the drivers to carry major speed in no-man’s land and the competitive field did not back down. Hometown hero Ceejay Rettew scored the win in the new-look Stinger Unleashed.


===== QUEEN CREEK, AZ =====

5/18 Sat Aft: We do not have results from this event

5/18 Sat Ngt: We do not have results from this event

5/19 Sun Aft: We do not have results from this event

5/19 Sun Ngt: TRAVIS RIFE [Outlaw] defeated Kaley Engstrom [Shark Attack]

We still need more information on the first three events since Monster Truck Wars ran a 5-truck field this time, so we need to know either who sat out racing or who lost in the first round. But we do know that Kaley Engstrom was in the finals all four events, winning on Saturday afternoon before dropping three straight to Travis Rife in Outlaw.


===== READING, PA =====

This Hot Wheels Live event did not include side-by-side racing and so points were not awarded.


===== SAINT JOHN, NB =====

5/18 Sat Aft: MICHAEL VATERS II [Overkill Evolution] defeated Michael Vaters I [Black Stallion]

No points awarded in Saint John since the bracket did not make any sense, but Michael Vaters II won the announced final round over his father in Black Stallion on the concrete-only roundy-round course.


===== SUMMERSIDE, PEI =====

5/20 Mon Aft: We do not have results from this event


===== VIRGINIA BEACH, VA =====

5/17 Fri Ngt: JOHN GORDON [Bad Company] defeated Jerry Beck [Dirt Crew]

5/18 Sat Aft: TIM JONES [Tailgator] defeated John Gordon [Bad Company]

5/18 Sat Ngt: STEVE SIMS [Stone Crusher] defeated Daron Basl [Block Head]

5/19 Sun Aft: JOHN GORDON [Bad Company] defeated Daron Basl [Block Head]

The biggest independent event of the weekend was undoubtedly the Pungo Off Road Monsters on the Beach event run by MTX. In perhaps a strange ironic twice, it was a Monster Jam Stadium regular in John Gordon who won the George Carpenter Cup.

Gordon started the weekend and ended the weekend with racing wins. His only on-track loss was a nail-biter against Tim Jones on Saturday afternoon. He had mechanical problems that kept him out of racing on Saturday night. Daron Basl grabed a pair of runner-up finishes and moves into the Top 20.



5/18 Sat Aft: ROB POUTRE [Bounty Hunter] defeated Dawn Creten [Scarlet Bandit]

Another win for Bounty Hunter, this time with Rob Poutre behind the wheel. He beat Dawn in the finals to improve his record against her to 19-3 this season.


===== YAKIMA, WA =====

5/18 Sat Aft: DAVID TUCKER [T-Maxx] defeated Kelsie Thurber [First Responder]

5/18 Sat Ngt: KYLIE THURBER [First Responder] defeated David Tucker [T-Maxx]

David Tucker took the sharp looking new paint scheme on T-Maxx into the winner’s circle in Yakima over Kelsie Thurber in First Responders. The two trucks got together on the open stretch of the U-turn course with T-Maxx coming out for the better and taking the win. It turned into a family feud that evening as Kylie Thurber took the wheel of First Responder and paid back Tucker with a win of her own.



Dresser, WI (Minnesota Go 4-Wheelers)

Elko, MN (Night of Destruction at Elko Speedway)

Kingston, ON (Monster Spectacular)

Lynden, WA (Lee Schwab Spring Nationals Tour)

Oshawa, ON (Monster Trucks All Out Tour Northern Lights Party)

Ottawa, ON (Monster Spectacular)

Pecatonica, IL (Monster X Tour)

Sarver, PA (Overdrive Monster Truck Tour)

Sault Sainte Marie, ON (Monster Madness)

Sydney, MT (Monster Trux)

Tulare, CA (Malicious Monster Truck Tour)

Victorville, CA (Monster Mayhem)

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