At the end of the Indianapolis Jamboree in 2012, one man stood atop the standings in the Monster Truck Thunder Drags. After coming one race short of the title a year earlier, a dominant second half of the season brought the title back to Hall Brothers Racing.
With the 2013 season starting off with a swap of location, Mark Hall was ready to go full-throttle in defending his championship.
His teammates Mat Dishman in the Rammunition and Mike Miller in Hotsy are ready to make him earn it, as is Team Bigfoot, Holman Motorsports and the Heavy Hitter teams.
The 2013 season saw a swap at opening events, as this year it was the Allen County Fairgrounds in Lima, Ohio, starting out the season. This brings back memories of the Penda Points Series in the early-mid 1990's, where the opening races happened at the same venue, but were moved later on. The problem soon became not the venue, but weather, as the rains that normally plague the early summer months, took a tole on the track.
So, in the hopes of keeping the weather nice and the track dry, the jamboree took the place of Springfield as the opening event.
With a massive line-up in line for the first event, including the Bigfoot team bringing Dan Runte to the first event as a last-minute swap, fans and drivers alike were ready to take on the S-shaped track the build crew put together for the weekend.
Unfortunately for Runte, his first jamboree event since he set the world record long jump in Indianapolis ended prematurely. He was able to get his wild Bigfoot #18 into the final round, but the team had to back out of going for victory. It was discovered after the race that the oil pressure in the engine was dropping, meaning there was a strong chance the engine had an internal issue.
Rather than risk blowing the engine, Runte and the team pulled the truck to the pits to check things over, and possibly swap out the bad power plant for a fresh piece. For Bigfoot fans, it was disheartening, as Runte would not freestyle on the opening night.
With him not able to make the finals, the truck he beat would take his place, and that was newcomer to the full jamboree tour, Derick Anson in the Heavy Hitter. Hall would put his Raminator in the finals as well, setting up a strong showdown between a jamboree veteran and a jamboree rookie.
When the trucks came across the line, there wasn't any doubt as to the winner in the first event, as Hall put his HEMI-powered Ram Heavy Duty into victory lane, starting the defense of his 2012 title the best way possible.
The remaining trucks would cap the night with some spectacular freestyle for the fans.
Day two of the jamboree will see the monsters perform twice in the afternoon, with races scheduled at 1:30 and 6:00 p.m., along with freestyle. Team Bigfoot is already hard at work trying to get Runte set for the second day, knowing that their Ohio fans want to see that truck perform.
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