Monster Jam 101
THIS IS MONSTER JAM
Here’s your guide to Monster Jam®, the most action-packed motorsports event on four wheels. At the event, you will witness world-class driver athletes and the most recognizable trucks tear up the dirt and compete in intense competitions of speed and skill.
MONSTER JAM TRUCKS
BY THE NUMBERS
- Each Monster Jam truck is approximately 10.5 feet tall, 12.5 feet wide, 17 feet long and weighs 12,000 pounds.
- A Monster Jam engine will generate 1,500 horsepower, thanks to a supercharger that forces air and fuel into the engine. It is powered by methanol fuel, consumed at the rates of three gallons a minute from a specially constructed safety cell.
- The truck utilizes a four-link racing suspension with four main bars that link the front and rear axles to the frame. It rides on clusters of nitrogen-charged shocks that offer 30 inches of travel in the suspension.
- The BKT tires are 66 inches in diameter and 43 inches wide, inflated to 23 psi pressure, and (with wheel) weigh 645 pounds each.
- The driver’s compartment is a steel safety structure, built from tubing and mounted to the truck frame.
- The truck bodies are custom-built and constructed of fiberglass.
- Each truck is transported in specially prepared trailers, which can include spare parts and as many as two trucks.
The fun begins at the Monster Jam® Pit Party, where you can see the massive trucks up close, meet your favorite drivers and crews, get autographs and take pictures. This fun-filled experience is the only place to get an insider’s look at how these 12,000-pound trucks are built to stand up to the competition. Activities vary by location. The Monster Jam Pit Party—there’s nothing like it. Activities and health and safety protocols are based on the event, venue, and local authorities’ guidelines, which are subject to change at any time.
Pit Parties require a separate admission ticket, along with a ticket for the Monster Jam event. Please check your Event Details page for Pit Party times and other details.
NOTE: Capacity and activities are limited based on the event, venue, and local authorities’ guidelines, which are subject to change at any time.
The trucks race along a prescribed course with the first advancing in the competition. Winners advance until only two trucks remain with the finals determining the racing champion. Racing may be preceded by qualifying to establish brackets.
Monster Jam drivers will have multiple opportunities to perform the best stunt, bringing at least two wheels into the air. This is a judged competition.
Competitors perform tricks and stunts throughout the floor area at a designated time. This is a judged competition.
Our fans have the unique opportunity to provide the scores for several competitions at each event. During the Skills Challenge, Donut, and/or Freestyle competitions, fans are encouraged to use their mobile device and log into JudgesZone.com.
There’s no other sport that puts the scoring into the hands of the fans like Monster Jam!
Monster Jam drivers come from all walks of life, but they are united by the desire to compete at the highest level. There are many paths to becoming a Monster Jam driver. Talent scouts are always on the lookout for those who can do the job and new drivers make the roster every year. Working in conjunction with specialists and experienced Monster Jam drivers, trainees are taught everything from the basic operation, safety, improving driver skills, and public relations. Much of the training is done at “Monster Jam University” facility in Illinois, which offers realistic tracks and obstacles in order to prepare the future Monster Jam driver for what lies ahead.
The unsung heroes of Monster Jam can be the technicians who are charged with keeping the Monster Jam truck in tip-top condition. Like the Monster Jam drivers, the technicians can come from many areas, but key consideration is experience and education. Many have graduated from automotive-related programs at technical schools. Specialties such as welding and fabrication and engine maintenance are helpful. Much of the work is done in the field and they serve an integral part in the success of any Monster Jam truck’s performance.
The Monster Jam trucks are designed to protect the driver at all times. A specially-constructed roll cage is built to house the driver, who is often sitting directly in the middle. Specially constructed seats that mold to the driver’s shape allows the work to be done with minimal distraction. A five-point harness is mounted securely to the truck to help hold the driver in position. The truck includes a receiver for a Remote Ignition Interrupter (RII). A signal can be transmitted to the truck by way of a special radio, which will shut off the engine. Each truck has a secondary on-off switch located at the rear on the frame. Other safety features are designed, built, and mandated to keep the truck safe and operational.
Each driver is equipped with specified safety gear, starting with the custom-fitted fire-resistant driving suit. The suit offers a minimum of three layers of protection. The helmet meets Snell Foundation regulations for fire-resistance while serving as part of the head-and-neck restraint system, which includes a tested and approval harness system. The drivers’ hands are protected by flame-resistant gloves which have a tacky grip side for steering wheel control. The drivers’ feet are protected by special fire-resistant shoes that also include a thin sole for optimal throttle and brake control.
The safety of the Monster Jam fans ensures a pleasant experience. Track designers include a “safety hold”, consisting of several rows of seats nearest the venue’s show floor. This area must remain clear of spectators at all times during a performance. Monster Jam works with each venue for evacuation plans and other safety matters that may be unique to that location.
MONSTER JAM GLOSSARY
BACKFLIP: When the truck does a complete 360-degree flip from a vertical obstacle.
BIG AIR: Monster Jam trucks can launch up to 30 feet into the air and travel more than 130 feet. Prepare for lift-off!
DONUT: Spinning a Monster Jam truck in circles in one spot.
- CYCLONE: Similar to a Donut, but done at a higher speed
- POGO: The Monster Jam truck bounces on the rear tires while standing up into a wheelie.
- POWER OUT: When a driver uses a burst of acceleration to keep the truck from rolling over.
- SKY WHEELIE: When a Monster Jam truck stands straight up at a 90-degree angle with the front tires in the air.
- SLAP WHEELIE: When the front of the Monster Jam truck comes down and slaps itself back into a wheelie
- STOPPIE: When the truck noses onto its front wheels, leaving the rear wheels in the air. Many drivers will put the truck in reverse and "moonwalk" it.
- WALK IT: A one-wheeled wheelie that rocks back and forth between the two rear tires.
- WHEELIE: Lifting the front wheels of the truck off the ground and driving only on the rear wheels.
- BITE: Traction. The strength of tires gripping the surface.
- BURNOUT: Spinning the tires to clear the mud off for optimum traction.
- CASE IT: Hit the lowest part of the truck’s frame on the peak of the obstacle.
- CUT TIRES: Shaving the tread off the tires for more traction and less weight. The process, done by hand, can take as much as 50 hours per tire.
- DRY HOP: Doing a burnout to clear the starting line of loose debris.
- ENDO: When a vehicle rolls end over end.
- EYEBALL THE TRACK: Drivers and crew members walk around the track to get an idea of the obstacles and how to plan their runs.
- HAMMER: The throttle.
- HOLESHOT: being the first vehicle off the starting line; getting an immediate advantage over an opponent.
- HOOK UP: Get enough traction for faster acceleration.
- HOT SHOE: A top driver.
- MASH THE THROTTLE: Step hard on the accelerator.
- RED LIGHT: Leave the starting line before the light turns green, resulting in disqualification.
- STAGED: Ready to start an event.