Monster Truck Madness – Here’s to Race Day
Let me let you in on a little secret, while the Monster Truck Madness blog usually goes up on Tuesday, I usually write them on Sunday. That’s the case this week. And as I’m sitting here sipping my coffee on this fine Sunday, it’s not just any Sunday. Nope, it’s race day!
There are few things in life that I enjoy as much as monster truck race day. You see, we always race on Sundays so it’s really a weekend thing. Saturday night means final truck prep and charging batteries. Once a truck is set up to my satisfaction, the final step is cinching down the big wheels and tires and screwing on all of my planetary wheel caps. That’s the cherry on top. And if the weather is decent, I’ll usually load up late in the evening to hit the road bright and early.
One of the ways that r/c solid axle monster truck racing differs from your standard r/c racing is that in most cases, the track does not exist beforehand. Whether the event is going to take place at a gym, a ball field or, in our case, inside an auto shop, everything is brought in and set up the day of the event. As soon as the meet is done, it must all be disassembled, stored and be cleaned up to where it looks like we were never there at all.
Heck, even if a standard r/c off-road facility is used, there is still additional prep as monster truck racers usually manipulate the standard layout of the track with various barricades and ramps to emulate that of a full size stadium course.
It’s a nomadic r/c life, and in many ways it feels like a smaller version of the real thing. Think about it- there are no permanent monster truck tracks that exist anywhere in the world, at least to my knowledge. A stadium, hockey rink or other multi-use facility is invaded for the weekend, the monsters do their things, and then everyone cleans up and heads on down the road to the next stop.
All of that track work and truck prep is finally brought to a head as soon as your truck hits the track for elimination racing. It’s exhilarating, and going mano a mano with another driver never gets old. All of that work can be over in a frustrating 10 seconds…or maybe you go deep into the bracket and take the win. It’s always a thrill.
Then it’s time for freestyle, at which time you take that meticulously prepped vehicle, many of them costing well north of $1k, and absolutely grind it into the dirt or pavement in the hopes of impressing the judges and winning the day’s event.
You then pick up the broken parts, load the monsters back in your hauler, clean up the area and start to prepare for the next event.
Man, I love race day!