Making It To The Monster Jam Championship Race In 2013: Team Grave Digger Is Leading The Way

By Scott Douglass
Sep 3, 2013

This has been an intense season of Advance Auto Parts Monster Jam® racing on a variety of tracks all over the world in 2013 with a mix of rising superstars and long term legends topping the list of winners. Looking a little deeper at a simple fact, that to win the champion’s racing trophy at any event you first have to be there, Monster Jam announcer Larry Jewett compiled some interesting research by combing all of the results from Advance Auto Parts Monster Jam® events, Maple Leaf Monster Jam® Tour races, and action on the Monster Jam World Tour looking at not just the winners, but expanding the data range to account for every Monster Jam truck and driver’s appearance in the Championship Racing Round at every event in 2013. You can’t take the top prize unless you earn the right to race in the final round, and in 2013 Team Grave Digger sets the standard for Championship Round Racing appearances.

It has been a theme week to week for just about every part of Team Grave Digger®: get into the Championship Round, then let the chips fall where they may. While some Grave Digger teams have a better track record in sealing the deal and getting that final round win, just the raw number of UTI Championship Round race appearances for the entire fleet of black and green wrecking machines has been impressive throughout 2013.
Look at this list of berths earned in the Championship Round of racing for 2013 across every Monster Jam event in the world for Team Grave Digger trucks, separated by Grave Digger drivers:

Monster Jam Truck/Driver 2013 Championship Round Racing Appearances
Grave Digger/Gary Porter  27
Grave Digger/Pablo Huffaker 26
Grave Digger/Jon Zimmer 26
Grave Digger/Randy Brown 22
Grave Digger/Carl Van Horn 21

Considering the stats for each and every competitor in 2013 Monster Jam events those are the top 5 teams in getting to the final round of racing. Check the numbers of the next five on that list:

Monster Jam Truck/Driver 2013 Championship Round Racing Appearances
Advance Auto Parts Grinder/John Seasock  19
Son-uva Digger®/Ryan Anderson 18
Advance Auto Parts Grinder/Frank Krmel   16
Grave Digger/Charlie Pauken    16
Monster Energy/Damon Bradshaw  16

The numbers amassed by the Grave Digger team here are dominant for sure, and make no mistake about it; the Grave Digger team success has been most notable on this list in arena events where the teams get more than one competition to compete in over the course of a weekend. What makes Monster Energy cracking the top 10 on this list especially notable is that Damon Bradshaw, Coty Saucier, and that team have a body of work loaded with stadium appearances where you get one crack at the championship round for the most part, often against as many as 16 top level teams.

Going further down this list also begins to give an insight into the success rate at those major stadiums. Other teams boasting double-digit appearances in the Championship Round this year are: Bounty Hunter/Jim Creten (15); Lucas Oil Crusader®/Linsey Weenk (15); Grave Digger The Legend®/Adam Anderson (13); Spider-ManTM/Bari Musawwir (13); Iron ManTM/Lee O’Donnell (12); Northern NightmareSM/Cam McQueen (12); Blue Thunder®/Dan Evans (11); El Toro Loco®/Marc McDonald (11); Grave Digger/Chad Tingler (11); Mohawk Warrior®/George Balhan (11); El Toro Loco/Aaron Basl (10); Max-DSM/Neil Elliott (10); Max-D/Tom Meents (10); Monster Mutt®/Whit Tarlton (10); SupermanTM/Joey Parnell (10). Among this group teams such as Bounty Hunter, Lucas Oil Crusader, Max-D, and of course 2013 Monster Jam World Racing Champion Adam Anderson and the Legend have completed schedules featuring lots of stadium Monster Jams making those numbers impressive as well.

The other thing that jumps out when you look at this analysis evaluating racing success this year is that while the Grave Digger overall numbers top the list there is still great parity in Monster Jam these days with arguably more fresh faces in the sport tasting more success than ever before.

The point is that while at the end of the day if you are a Monster Jam team the ultimate goal at every race bracket is the Championship Round win, and as we’ve documented in this space previously it has been Grave Digger and Pablo Huffaker at the top of the overall win list this year and World Champion The Legend and Anderson have set the pace in stadiums. But you have to get to the finale to have the chance to win it and more Monster Jam teams than ever have been stepping up their games to get to that Championship Round level more and more often. In 2013 while that list has expanded with lots of impressive new names on it, the team name at the top remains Grave Digger.


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