Overkill Evolution Wins the 2015 Monster Jam World Freestyle Championship
Las Vegas, NV – Following a stunning victory in last year’s Young Guns competition at Monster Jam World Final XV, Mike (Mikey) Vaters II and the Truck Toyz Performance/One Up Offroad – Overkill Evolution Team earned a spot in the 32 truck main field at World Finals XVI. With only 15 months of competition under their belt since inception, the Overkill Evolution Team would face the toughest field of Monster Jam trucks ever assembled. From seasoned veterans to rising stars, the Overkill Evolution Team knew that they would need to step up their game to be competitive against the “Best of the Best” in the sport. But the team had a great deal of faith in their ‘2014 Monster Jam Rookie of the Year’ recipient driver Mikey, as well as their state of the art equipment.
During the practice session and qualifying for the Racing Competition, Overkill Evolution struggled with traction issues as the result of a new tread cut which hindered performance off the starting line and through the chicane. As the traction issue was being addressed and on the final qualifying pass a u-joint failed forcing Mikey to idle across the finish line resulting in a 32nd qualifying position which pitted him against the fastest qualifier in the first round of racing. Although the team was successful in improving the performance Mikey was edged out in round 1 but laid down a pass that would have otherwise been competitive with the quickest trucks in the field.
Down but not out, the Overkill Evolution Team knew they had one final shot at a World Championship although this time it would be in the ultracompetitive discipline of Monster Jam Freestyle Competition. Mikey and team co-owners Marty Garza and Mike Vaters discussed the monumental task at hand cognizant of the fact that this discipline typically favors those teams with vast resources in terms of both hardware and manpower. Although the Overkill Evolution Team does not fall into that category, Marty and Mike put all their faith in Mikey’s abilities and gave him the green light to pull out all the stops and do what he felt he needed to do to lay down an epic performance. And, EPIC it was.
Mikey was to perform 14th in the 32 truck field where scores typically increase progressively towards the later slots occupied by the odds on favorites. He knew his performance would need to make a heavy impression on the panel of 9 judges. His run would start with a big jump to announce his presence and confident intent. And that confidence was evident when very early in his run he successfully landed not ONE but TWO back-to-back ‘Backflips’ in spite of never even having attempted one previously. These were then followed up by a series of HUGE leaps before rolling over right after the end of his Bonus Time. This performance had the 35,000 Monster Jam fans in attendance at Sam Boyd Stadium on their feet cheering and sufficiently impressed the judges to put Mikey in the Lead.
One by one the Overkill Evolution Team nervously watched as 18 of the best drivers in the world threw caution to the wind as they attempted to better Mikey’s performance. Finally as the reigning Freestyle Champion rolled onto the track as the last of the 32 Monster Jam truck field, all eyes were set for the final showdown. But when the dust settled the final competitor came up short rolling the truck over before filling the allotted time depriving him of needed Bonus Points. Then in Cinderella fashion with a bit of shock and disbelief thrown in, a new champion was crowned. Mikey Vaters and Overkill Evolution are the 2015 Monster Jam World Freestyle Champions!
Team Overkill Evolution would like to thank Truck Toyz Performance, One Up Offroad, Ford Racing, Roush Yates Engines, and FELD Motorsports for all of their support.
Team Overkill Evolution endorses: Aero Exhaust, A & C Racing Engines, Alto Products, ARP, Blower Drive Service, Capitol Building Supply, Cometic, Coan Racing, Cold Fire, Cloyes, Dana Spicer, Dayco, DeWalt, Edelbrock, Extend-It, Ferra Racing, Flaming River, Fluidyne, Harland Sharp, Hooker Harness, Isky Racing, JE Pistons, Jomar Performance, K&N Filters, King Bearings, L&L Hydraulics, Maier USA, Makita, Manton Pushrods, Masters Tool & Die, Melling Engine Parts, Miller Electric, Milodon, Moser Engineering, Motor Mouth Designs, MSD Pro-Mag, Neil Chance Racing, NGK Spark Plugs, NRC Modifications, Oliver Racing Parts, PPG, Pro-Werks, Pyrotect, Raybestos, Safety Kleen, Teamtech, Total Seal, Turanair Systems, Valco Cincinnati
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Team Overkill Evolution supports the National Mill Dog Rescue: https://www.facebook.com/NationalMillDogRescue