Overkill Evolution Wins the 2015 Monster Jam World Freestyle Championship

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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!

Group Shot

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

Follow Overkill Evolution on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/OverkillEvolution

Team Overkill Evolution supports the National Mill Dog Rescue: https://www.facebook.com/NationalMillDogRescue

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Hall Bros. Shatter Guinness World Record for Speed

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RAMINATOR MONSTER TRUCK AND HALL BROTHERS RACING TEAM SHATTER GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS® RECORD: FASTEST SPEED FOR A MONSTER TRUCK

America’s Fastest Growing Truck Brand Breaks Speed Record for Monster Trucks at Circuit of the America’s in Austin, TX

AUBURN HILLS, Mich., December 15, 2014 – Raminator, a monster truck sponsored by the Ram Truck brand, has broken the GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS® record for the Fastest Speed for a Monster Truck at Circuit of The Americas in Austin, Texas. Hitting a record speed of 99.10 miles per hour (mph), Raminator and Driver Mark Hall secured the GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS title at 8:44 a.m. (CT), breaking the previous record of 96.8 mph.

As the fastest growing truck brand in America, the Ram Truck brand is a long time sponsor of the Fastest Monster Truck, the Raminator. The Ram-sponsored monster truck lineup includes the 2014 Monster Truck Nationals Champion Raminator and Rammunition, sponsored since 2002. In 2014, Mopar also introduced Mopar Muscle; the monster truck it sponsors. The entire line of monster trucks are owned and operated by the Hall Brothers Racing Team based out of Champaign, Ill. Raminator has been named Monster Truck Racing Association’s (MTRA) “Truck of the Year” a record eight times, while Mark Hall, driver of Raminator, has been named MTRA “Driver of the Year” nine times since 1996, and Crew Chief Tim Hall has been named MTRA “Mechanic of the Year” five times since 2006.

“Taking on the challenge of breaking a world record has been an experience we will never forget,” said Hall Brothers Racing President and Crew Chief, Tim Hall. “With the support of Ram and Mopar, we continue to add to our achievements and are honored to now be a GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS holder.”

Ram Trucks chose Circuit of The Americas, a multi-purpose facility and 3.4 mile race track situated on 1000-acre site in southeast Austin, as the site for this attempt at the record. Throughout the year, the Ram monster trucks compete in races and freestyle events and tour the country, making appearances at dealerships to offer ride-alongs and car-crushing spectacles for hundreds of thousands of fans of all ages.

For more information on Raminator or Hall Brothers Racing visit http://www.raminator.com/ or to check out Circuit of The Americas, visit http://circuitoftheamericas.com/.

About Ram Truck Brand Since its launch as a stand-alone division of Chrysler Group LLC in 2009, the Ram Truck Brand has steadily emerged as an industry leader with one goal: to build the best pickup trucks and commercial vehicles in the industry.

Creating a distinct identity for Ram Trucks has allowed the brand to concentrate on core customers and features they find valuable. Whether focusing on a family that uses a Ram 1500 day in and day out, a hard-working Ram 3500 Heavy Duty owner or a business that depends on its Ram ProMaster commercial van every day for deliveries, Ram has the truck market covered. In order to be the best, it takes a commitment to innovation, capability, efficiency and durability. Ram Truck invests substantially in its products, infusing them with great looks, refined interiors, durable engines and exclusive features that further enhance their capabilities. Moving into the 2015 model year, Ram continues to beat the competition in the two most sought-after titles, fuel economy and towing capacity:

-Best-in-class fuel economy with exclusive EcoDiesel – 28 mpg with Ram 1500

-Best-in-class towing capability – 30,000 pounds with Ram 3500

Truck customers, from half-ton to commercial, have a demanding range of needs and require their vehicles to provide high levels of capability. Ram trucks are designed to deliver a total package.

About Circuit of the Americas

Circuit of The Americas in Austin, Texas, is the only purpose-built Grand Prix facility in the United States designed for all classes of racing. The 3.4-mile racetrack hosts the world’s most prestigious sporting events, including Formula 1, MotoGP, Lone Star Le Mans and ESPN’s X Games. The 1,500-acre campus is also home of the Austin360 Amphitheater — PollStar’s 2013 “Best New Major Concert Venue” and a 2014 “Best Major Outdoor Concert Venue” nominee — impressive meeting and hospitality spaces, and a 25-story observation tower that offers panorama views of the circuit and downtown Austin. For more information and downloadable video and photos visit www.CircuitofTheAmericas.com and www.Austin360Amphitheater.com. Follow COTA on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CircuitofTheAmericas and Twitter @circuitamericas and @COTAmedia. For an experience as unique as Austin and a rush you’ll never forget, visit Circuit of The Americas, where exhilaration happens.

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2015 Celebrates 40 years of BIGFOOT!

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December 3, 2014 (St. Louis, MO) – It was fall 1982 inside a jam-packed Pontiac Silverdome in Pontiac, Michigan.  Some 70,000 fans were on hand for a hot rod truck and tractor pull, but got so much more.  Nothing more than a half time act brought in by the promoter;  Bob Chandler and his over-sized Ford pickup called “BIGFOOT” crawled up and drove over a pair of unsuspecting junk cars and the crowd erupted.  Chandler estimates 20-30,000 of them jumped the walls and poured on to the floor of the stadium.  “My son was riding in the passenger seat with me so I told him to roll up the window and lock the door. It was an awesome but scary sight!”   That was the unofficial birth of monster trucks.  In actuality, that was Bigfoot #2 performing, and Bob had run over cars a year earlier in a field just to prove it could be done.  The monster truck had been born, and people wanted more.

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That night was a spark that ignited the imaginations of generation after generation of fans and sells over 4 million tickets annually.  It all started with an idea from Bob and longtime confidant, Jim Kramer, when they started a 4-Wheel Drive shop in a St. Louis, Missouri suburb.  Bob’s personal pickup became the company’s billboard and evolved into a fleet of car crushers.  Bigfoot 4 was the first entirely purpose-built monster truck.  It was the most heavily updated and abused truck in the family.  Bigfoot 5 sits on tires 10′ tall and is the world’s tallest and widest pickup as registered by Guinness.   In 1989, Bigfoot 8 revolutionized the sport with its tube frame chassis and nitrogen charged shocks.  The 18th rendition holds the record for the longest jump at 214′ 8″.  The crew at team headquarters is currently assembling truck #21 for a January 2015 debut.  In 1982 Chandler thought that if he jumped the truck even a foot of the ground it would break into pieces.  Little did he know that 20 years later his top driver, Dan Runte, would jump one over a Boeing 737 and drive away.

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BIGFOOT is as much a marketing monster as it is a monster truck.   Ford Motor Company officially became the team sponsor in 1983, a relationship that lasted nearly a quarter-century.   Firestone  has been supplying the 66″ tall rubber for the team since 1992 and hosts BIGFOOT appearances at hundreds of its dealers each year.  BIGFOOT was named one of the top 5 marketing vehicles of all time in 2009, and you might even recognize the blue Ford from movies like ‘Roadhouse’ and ‘Take This Job and Shove It”.

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In 40 years of business, Chandler’s most memorable moments don’t include the more than 35 Championships the team has won, the industry firsts or the world records.  He is most proud of being inducted the International Monster Truck Hall of Fame and the Off-Road Motorsports Hall of Fame.  “I did not believe the Off Road Industry would recognize monster Trucks as a motorsport”.   He is quick to hand much of the credit for BIGFOOT’s success to his wife Marilyn and Jim Kramer.  Chandler noted “he took the slow driving car crushes to another level, then led the way with monster truck racing and took us from a circus act to a real motorsport”.

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Today the BIGFOOT fleet has completed more than 30,000 appearances in 32 countries.  The arsenal of drivers and trucks competes in many series including the Toughest Monster Truck Tour, Monster X Tour, Monster Nationals and 4-Wheel Jamboree Series.  Current team driver Larry Swim feels the pressure to perform knowing he’s driving one of the most recognizable motorsports vehicle in the world.  “These fans expect a show, and they aren’t satisfied with anything less than 110% out of a BIGFOOT truck”.

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The 40th Anniversary of BIGFOOT will be celebrated throughout 2015.  Several appearances of BIGFOOT 1 and 5 are planned, along with a revived rivalry with former nemesis USA-1.  Throughout the year trucks will appear with various retro paint schemes, and 40th Anniversary merchandise will be available at events and online at Bigfoot4x4.com.

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Hall Brothers Racing Secures 11th Thunder Drag Natl. Championship

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RAMINATOR MONSTER TRUCK AND HALL BROTHERS RACING TEAM SECURE 11th MONSTER TRUCK THUNDER DRAG NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP

Driver Mark Hall Takes Home Top Honors to Close Out 2014 Season

AUBURN HILLS, Mich., October 3, 2014 – Raminator, a monster truck sponsored by the Ram Truck brand, claimed victory at the 2014 General Tire Monster Truck Thunder Drags, taking the National Championship for the eleventh time. Locking in a total of 1,880 points, Raminator and Driver Mark Hall defeated the field of ten trucks to secure their 22nd overall championship title. Throughout the year, the Ram monster trucks compete in races and freestyle events and tour the country, making appearances at dealerships to offer ride-alongs and car-crushing spectacles for fans of all ages.

The Hall Brothers Racing team, owners and operators of the Raminator and the Ram monster truck lineup, finished strong at the end of the season. Rammunition and Driver Mat Dishman finished in 3rd place with 1,720 points, and Mopar Muscle completed its debut performance on the tour in 6th place with 1,080 points, with Driver Mike Miller in only his second season on the tour.

“Finishing the 2014 racing season with a championship title speaks to our hard work and commitment to being the best in monster truck racing,” said Hall Brothers Racing President and Crew Chief Tim Hall. “With the ongoing support of the Ram Truck brand, we look forward to many more opportunities to add to our achievements.”

The 4-Wheel Jamboree 2014 General Tire Monster Truck Thunder Drags season consisted of four events in Lima, OH, Springfield, MO, Bloomsburg, PA and Indianapolis, IN. With four races at each event, competitors had 16 races to gain points towards the championship. When they are not competing, Raminator, Rammunition and Mopar Muscle along with the Hall Brothers Racing team appear at trade shows, farm shows and many other local events.

The Ram Truck brand monster truck lineup includes Raminator and Rammunition, sponsored since 2002, as well as Mopar Muscle, introduced in 2014. The entire line of Ram monster trucks are owned and operated by the Hall Brothers Racing Team based out of Champaign, Ill. Raminator has been named Monster Truck Racing Association’s (MTRA) “Truck of the Year” a record seven times, while Mark Hall, driver of Raminator, has been named MTRA “Driver of the Year” eight times since 1996, and Crew Chief Tim Hall has been named MTRA “Mechanic of the Year” five times since 2006.

About Ram Truck Brand

Since its launch as a stand-alone division of Chrysler Group LLC in 2009, the Ram Truck Brand has steadily emerged as an industry leader with one goal: to build the best pickup trucks and commercial vehicles in the industry.   Creating a distinct identity for Ram Trucks has allowed the brand to concentrate on core customers and features they find valuable. Whether focusing on a family that uses a Ram 1500 day in and day out, a hard-working Ram 3500 Heavy Duty owner or a business that depends on its Ram ProMaster commercial van every day for deliveries, Ram has the truck market covered.   In order to be the best, it takes a commitment to innovation, capability, efficiency and durability. Ram Truck invests substantially in its products, infusing them with great looks, refined interiors, durable engines and exclusive features that further enhance their capabilities.   Moving into the 2015 model year, Ram continues to beat the competition in the two most sought-after titles, fuel economy and towing capacity:

-Best-in-class fuel economy with exclusive EcoDiesel – 28 mpg with Ram 1500

-Best-in-class towing capability – 30,000 pounds with Ram 3500

Truck customers, from half-ton to commercial, have a demanding range of needs and require their vehicles to provide high levels of capability. Ram trucks are designed to deliver a total package.

 

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MTRA Official Statement: Haaksbergen Incident

September 29, 2014

MTRA Official Statement: Haaksbergen Incident

The Monster Truck Racing Association is currently conducting an investigation of an incident which took place on September 28, 2014 at the AutoMotorSportief event in Haaksbergen, Overijssel. This unfortunate incident resulted in three fatalities and fifteen additional spectators injured.

The exact nature of the vehicle malfunction is still under investigation, however as in the case of the tragedy which took place nearly one year prior in Chihuahua, Mexico, the overriding factor was the placement and proximity of the spectators to the performance area. This event which was promoted by Star Events Foundation Haaksbergen took place in the Stationsstraat which is a street in the center of the town. Spectators were situated at event level and in close proximity to the performance area separated by only bike rack barricades. In addition, an on-board Remote Ignition Interrupter (RII) which would have allowed event staff to instantly disable the vehicle does not appear to have been utilized.

The Board strongly believes that adherence to MTRA standards for equipment and protocol would have afforded multiple layers of safety precaution for spectators and staff alike and would have undoubtedly prevented such a tragedy. This once again serves as an unfortunate reminder of the importance of observance to these critical minimum standards. We urge all of those considering to promote Monster Truck related events to join the MTRA and observe our minimum standards. In addition we ask that the ownership of venues hosting, as well as Insurance Companies underwriting, Monster Truck related events insist on proof that these minimum safety standards are being met.

Our heartfelt condolences go out to the families of those lost, and we pray for a full and speedy recovery for all of those injured in this incident.

For inquires please contact the MTRA at: contact@mtra.us

Board of Directors
Monster Truck Racing Association

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