Monster Truck rallies have been around for three decades. While the first Monster Trucks were built during the 1970s, they were not regularly used in racing until the mid-1980s when The Battle of The Monster Trucks was created as a platform for trucks to race competitively. In 1987, the United States Hot Rod Association sanctioned the first series of competitions where Monster Trucks were allowed to compete head-to-head.
During the sport’s peak in the 1990s and early 2000s, freestyle Monster Truck shows overtook formal racing competitions, and the sport expanded to entertain families in Europe and the rest of North America.
The allure of Monster Truck rallies has affected millions of fans in countries across the world. Many fans have been following the sport since they were kids and have passed the tradition down to their children. One of the biggest reasons why Monster Truck rallies were so popular during the past few decades is the child factor; attending these rallies brings out the child in every fan.
Big, Loud and Fast
Many of these trucks, including the original BigFoot weigh as much as 15,000 pounds, are built to heights of more than eleven feet and can reach speeds of up to one-hundred miles per hour.
Trucks that are built to such specifications can do things that even the most mature adult can appreciate. They can race around dirt tracks, jump over buses, crush cars and more.
Young boys are drawn to Monster Truck rallies for the simple fact that they love to see big trucks crush little cars. Grown men and women attend the rallies to appreciate the trucks as modified pieces of art.
Both reasons were major factors in the growth of the sport in the 80s and 90s. No one had ever seen such a sport before and were drawn to the allure of these testosterone-filled events.
Excellence in Marketing
Monster Truck marketing was at its peak in the 1990s. Because the sport became so popular by word-of-mouth and promotion through various automotive companies, television networks began broadcasting major Monster Truck events to audiences across the United States. At one point during the decade, large audiences would be able to listen to these events through local radio stations.
For many sporting events, live announcers often play an important entertainment role for the fans. Monster Truck rallies began to use announcers that would create excitement during the rallies. They would announce every truck before the start of the race and up-sell the tricks that were performed throughout the night. Creating excitement among Monster Truck fans was key for word-of-mouth advertising. The sport soon became popular with families across the country.
Freestyle Competition Creation
Freestyle competitions began to emerge in the early 1990s. Freestyle allowed for trucks to show-off their driving skills during regular racing competitions. One of the more popular Monster Trucks, Grave Digger began asking for time to entertain the fans by doing tricks during the competition. Due to the growing popularity of freestyle shows, the USHRA began to hold freestyle competitions and championships in 2000. The drivers were judged based on driving skills and truck durability while performing a variety of tricks.
The allure of Monster Truck rallies begins at a young age. A unique marketing style utilized by both the drivers and the automotive companies combined with the fascination of young children makes Monster Truck rallies extremely popular among families throughout Europe and North America.
This piece was composed by Tony Skelton, a freelancer who often writes on automobiles, the auto industry, racecar driving and other topics pertaining four-wheeled vehicles. Those who enjoyed this piece may want to consider one of the existing truck driving schools to further their interest.