Can you hear the rumble of the motor revving up before the monster crushes what lies beneath it? The vibration rivets the soul and the crowd begins to cheer him on. Monster Truck rallies rock the soul of just about anyone who enjoys big loud trucks. These trucks are truly monsters. Big trucks and loud engines seem to be one the top crazes in today’s sports world.
Big Foot seems to be the one and only to start this monster truck craze. The original Big Foot was a 1974 F-250 Ford pick-up truck with a 1979 body. It had a 640 ci Ford engine, a C-6 automatic Ford transmission, 5 ton military hardened axel shafts, 14 Big Foot signature series shocks, 66 x 43 x 25 Firestone Flotation Tires, a height of 10′, 6″, weighed in at 11,000 pounds, and ran on racing fuel. In 1979, Big Foot entered his first paid event at a Denver Car show. Opening doors and offering impossible feats, Big Foot paved the way for many others to follow. And follow they did.
The Monster Trucks poured into Roanoke Civic Center, February 11th and 12th bringing with them the thunderous rumbling of their engines, their massive size, and awesome crushing abilities. Little Tiger, Avenger, Total Chaos, T-Maxx, War Wizard, Brutus, Mutant Ninja Turtle, and of course the infamous Grave Digger all took to the arena. Suddenly all the engines fell silent and the lights dimmed as the three Boy Scouts of America took center stage. The announcer asked the crowd to stand and face the flag that they held high. The Pledge of Allegiance was said and the lights were bright again as engines started revving up and the crowed started to get loud once more.
On the left side there were five bright yellow cars, ready to be crushed beneath Little Tiger. On the right side were five bright red cars, awaiting another monster to do his damage. Little is a misconception when looking at this massive beast of white with black stripes and baby blue headlights that makes him look so gentle, yet so fierce. He sits atop 66 inch tires and 1500 horses under the hood. Little Tiger made it to the championship finals in 2004; will he make it in 2005? Following Little Tiger came Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle. Yes, it is a turtle in design, but not even close in reality when it comes to competition. This turtle cashed in his slowness and short legs for 1475 horsepower, 66 inch tires, and a 540 Merlin engine. He’s a 12 foot tall crushing machine.
War Wizard, the name says it all. He broke his axel at the Saturday show, but he made his appearance. War Wizard is maxed out with the colors of the rainbow, a 540 ci engine, Hughes Power glide transmission and 66 inch Goodyear tires to life him off the ground and able to do his damage.
Brutus, a raging powerful machine, is a 2002 Ford F-150 with a 575 Keith Black Chevy engine, and API Big Brute Glide transmission. He sits atop four 66 inch Terra tires. Brutus can take on any one who can dish it out. He has the power to out crush any other monster truck. Avenger made his appearance as well. The 1957 Chevy Bel-Air sits atop 66 inch tires, red and yellow flames down the front fenders, and bright green headlights, makes this monster a little intimidating. Avenger has some power to back up his intimating looks as well. He holds under his hood a 540 ci big block Chevy engine and a Chevy Turbo 400, Rich Bewick & Coan Transmission. Total Chaos and T-Maxx showed their stuff as well. Their massive tires crushed anything below them as they made their way around the arena.
Last but not least, Grave Digger made his appearance in the first rounds. Unfortunately he only made it to the first rounds. His first competition he managed to flip during his first jump over the cars. His landing did not seem to go as planned. The driver Gary Porter was not injured in the over turn. Grave Digger only bent the rim on his left front wheel. He was out of the show until the freestyle finally. He made his appearance to the arena and the crowd cheered louder than they had the entire show. Apparently Grave Digger is Roanoke’s favorite Monster Truck. He made the crowd go wild as he jumped cars, crushed cars, and did three sixties in the middle of the arena, tossing dirt up into the stands. Cameras were flashing as Grave Digger went round in round, mesmerizing his fans as they cheered him on. The Grave Digger team is on their way to the World Finals, hoping to win the championship. Will they win? We’ll just have to wait and see.