Parkland Press

Thursday, November 14, 2019
CONTRIBUTED PHOTOTristan England, driver, EarthShaker, “Monster Jam Triple Threat Series,” Feb. 22-24, PPL Center, Seventh and Hamilton streets, Allentown CONTRIBUTED PHOTOTristan England, driver, EarthShaker, “Monster Jam Triple Threat Series,” Feb. 22-24, PPL Center, Seventh and Hamilton streets, Allentown

Tristan England born to run in ‘Monster Jam’ EarthShaker

Friday, February 22, 2019 by ERIN FERGUSON Special to The Press in Focus

Tristan England, driver of EarthShaker in the “Monster Jam Triple Threat Series,” Feb. 22-24, PPL Center, Allentown, got his start in 2015 when he attended “Monster Jam University” to train with “Monster Jam World Final” champion, Tom Meents.

“Tom Meents kind of just tossed me in the truck and taught me how to drive.

“I definitely figured out my own driving style over the years and consider myself to be calm, cool and collected.

“It’s controlled chaos and my driving style will get the fans on the edge of their seats,” says England in a phone interview.

Although the trucks are subject to change, the 2019 “Monster Jam” lineup includes: the GraveDigger, Max D, El Toro Loco, Alien Invasion, Zombie, Megalodon, and MM Dalmation.

England, nicknamed “The Little Kahuna,” works on his father’s truck, The Big Kahuna, during his downtime or when he’s not behind the wheel of the EarthShaker.

His father, Shane England, got his start in 2013 when he built his own “Monster Jam” truck, which is also when he started competing.

“My dad taught me everything I needed to know mechanically about the trucks and how they work. He is my role model,” says England.

A “Monster Jam” truck is approximately 10.5-feet-tall, 12.5-feet-wide, 17-feet-long and weighs 12,000 pounds.

The trucks’ engines are powered by methanol fuel. A truck typically consumes three gallons per minute from a specially-constructed safety cell.

The trucks’ tires are BKT tires that are 66 inches in diameter and 43-inches-wide and are inflated to 16-20 psi pressure. Each tire and wheel rim weighs 645 pounds.

Truck bodies are custom-built and constructed of Fiberglass. Some are customized Ford F-150s and others are Dodge-based.

The EarthShaker is custom-made. With its 1,500-horsepower engine, the sound this truck makes can indeed be, well, earth-shaking.

“There’s nothing like hearing that 1,500-horsepower engine screaming out of the tunnel,” England says.

When attending the “Monster Jam,” earplugs are recommended for the audience.

“I’m pretty used to the intense sound since I’ve been around it since I was around seven-years-old.

“We’ve got ear protection that we use with our Simpson helmets, which are one of the best with earmuffs that go around our gear so we can also hear our crew chiefs at the same,” says England.

“One of the biggest challenges I face is making the crowd happy. It’s all about the fans. I remember being a fan when I was younger, so I know what they like and what they want to see,” England says.

“Monster Jam” fans can vote for their favorite truck and driver at the event by voting on their smartphones at: judgeszone.com.

Many of the “Monster Jam” shows start with a “Pit Party,” which gives fans an opportunity to meet the drivers, get autographs and take photos. A separate admission ticket, along with a ticket to the “Monster Jam,” is required.

Tickets: PPL Center Box Office, 701 Hamilton St., Allentown; PPLCenter.com; 610-347-TIXX.