Tristan England: The Lone Non-Grave Digger Champion of 2023

Authored by Samuel Reiman on May 31, 2023

Tristan England waves to the fans at Monster Jam World Finals XXI
Tristan England waves to the fans at Monster Jam World Finals XXI


Monster Jam crowned five series champions in 2023: Tyler Menninga (Grave Digger), Brandon Vinson (Grave Digger), Weston Anderson (Grave Digger), Adam Anderson (Grave Digger) and Tristan England (EarthShaker).


For Tristan, the fact that he was the only non-Grave Digger series champion is something he can hang his cowboy hat on.


“Oh, they’re gonna hear it the whole time at World Finals. That’s all I’m going to talk about. I strive on that.


“I came from a background with my dad (Shane England) dirt track racing, motocross, everything like that. And then he started wanting to pursue his dream of driving monster trucks and I just followed those footsteps.


“I'm very fortunate to drive with Monster Jam and I wouldn't have it any other way but, growing up with my dad, with him always wanting to beat Grave Digger. It's instilled in my blood.”


Tristan England first arrived in Monster Jam working on his dad’s truck, Big Kahuna. He attended Monster Jam University in 2015 and soon found himself behind the wheel of his own ride.


At first, Tristan was hopeful to get behind the wheel of one of the most renown trucks in Monster Jam, Blue Thunder. However, by his own admission, he wasn’t ready, and so the dream of competing in Blue Thunder would have to wait.


Instead, Tristan made his Monster Jam breakthrough in El Toro Loco. He quickly started to enjoy success, winning the Double Down Showdown Championship in 2017 and then back-to-back Series Championships in 2018 and 2019. He would have to wait until 2023, however, to win his third.


“This one, it meant a lot. My son (Crash, 3 years old) is getting older, he's more aware of what's going on with the Monster Jam trucks and everything like that, so he's getting more into it and it gets me geared up every week to get out there.


“I'm not necessarily trying to prove myself, but I want to do some really cool stuff to show my kid. He gets really excited over everything that I do in the truck, and he even gets excited about everybody else driving.


“So I just went out there and had a good time and I really couldn't have done it without my crew. I had Howie Dalton as my technician this year and we went through a bunch of weekends with a lot of trophies and wins and no damage, and just really lucked out. We were very cautious of everything that we were doing and we just knew our equipment was top notch.


“My girlfriend Kierra, keeping everything together at the house while I'm gone for 19 weeks on the road, it's a team effort and then I'm super thankful for all the support that I have.”


As the Arena Championship West Series wound down and Tristan solidified his position as champion, he was invited abroad to an international Monster Jam event at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban, South Africa, where he finally had the opportunity to compete in Blue Thunder. He took home the Racing win.


“I wish I could have drove that truck years ago, but it just wasn't in the cards for me. Finally, I got my opportunity to drive it and I just knew I wanted to do good in it. We got to race and win so that that felt really good to me. That was even big for me compared to my championship. I mean, just getting to go over there and put a little footprint of my own there with my name in Blue Thunder, that was cool and I'm just super grateful for the opportunities that are ahead.”


As Series Champion, Tristan receives an automatic bid to compete in Monster Jam World Finals XXII at Nissan Stadium in Nashville on July 1.


“Going out there for a stadium compared to an arena, it's a different animal. What I strive to do is just really do my homework and watch my other buddies that are on Stadium series, and watch what their shock settings are and how their trucks are landing and if they're turning in and out of the their landings and things like that, and just try to go out there and give the fans everything I got.


“I don't necessarily look back on all the wins or anything like that. I just, you know, have a good time with my friends on the track. And if there's some competition, you know, watch out. But it feels really good to be the only truck that is not a Grave Digger that has won a series.”