When you scan through the line-up for the Toronto Monster Jam show, there’s one thing that stands out – it’s filled with talented drivers from top to bottom.
Ultimately led by one of the biggest names in the game, Ryan Anderson has proven that he can get the job done behind the wheel of Son-uva Digger any given day. There’s also BJ Johnson, who is set to bring the Gas Monkey Garage truck across the border for the first time. But the talent goes beyond that.
Don’t believe me? Let me introduce you to five more drivers to watch.
Lee O’Donnell may not be a name known to Toronto residents, but he can get the job done. You don’t win the Monster Jam World Finals Freestyle Championship, but he did just that last year behind the wheel of VP Racing Fuels’ Mad Scientist. Oh, and on top of that, he also performed the first forward motion flip during that performance.
If that’s not enough to entice you, the floor of the Rogers Centre will be home to two of the most recent title holders over the course of the weekend. 2015 Monster Jam World Champion Mike Vaters II will have Overkill Evolution tuned up, in hopes of capturing the glory as Toronto marks the first show of the first quarter for him. He impressed in Toronto last year, scoring 31 points in his freestyle run on Saturday. Notably, he started off the run with some of the best air of the night, crossing the track in the air at one point, but fell short of completing the full time due to rear-end issues.
There’s also the fan favorite in Grave Digger, which will be piloted by veteran Randy Brown this year after Carl Van Horn led the team to success with a freestyle victory in last year’s second show. Brown has gotten the job done previously, boosting six previous victories in Toronto, including three during freestyle competition. Notably, this will be his first appearance in Toronto in at least three years.
There will also be some female power in the house, with Monster Jam rookie Haley Gauley behind the wheel of Scooby-Doo. The ladies have proven in previous years that they can get it done right alongside the guys – just ask Becky McDonough, who won the Saturday Freestyle show last year after a three-way tie. Even being a first-year driver, Gauley will probably hit the obstacles hard and bring the young ladies up on their feet as each driver goes through extensive training and practice before hitting the floor.
Want a truck to keep an eye on simply because of looks? Be sure to give a double glance to Jon Zimmer in Dragon. The body of the truck fits the persona perfectly as it is designed to a T, making the green animal stand out no matter where he is on-track. He also knows how to get the job done, too, having been competing since 2005. Oh yeah, and he’s a past Toronto winner as well, scoring the 2013 Sunday Show Freestyle victory while driving Grave Digger at the time.
The rest of the stacked line-up includes Barbarian driven by Devin Jones, Black Stallion driven by Mike Vaters, Bounty Hunter driven by Austin Minton, Hotsy driven by Kurt Kraehmer, Iron Outlaw driven by Mike Christensen, Rammunition driven by Mat Dishman, and Xtreme Diesel driven by Dave Radzierez.
Ticket prices start at $15, with Pit Party Passes are available for purchase for $10. Tickets and Pit Passes are available at the Rogers Centre Box Office, all Ticketmaster outlets, online at www.ticketmaster.ca, and at (855) 985-5000.
The Pit Party will be held from 2:30pm on Saturday, January 13 and 11:30am on Sunday, January 14. The pre-show pit party gives fans the chance to see the massive Monster Jam trucks up close, meet drivers, take pictures and get autographs. To access the Pit Party, event ticket and Pit Party Pass must be presented upon entry.