Fans in Yakima, WA got large serving of monster truck action last weekend with some of the closest freestyle scoring so far this year. The Toughest trucks on hand included Double Trouble (Tyler Groth), El Matador (Daron Basl), Destroyer (Roger Stidell), King Krunch (David Smith), Bigfoot (Larry Swim) and hometown hero Jeff Bainter in Captain USA.
The story of the weekend was the unlikely characters of Daron Basl and newcomer Tyler Groth in the spotlight and the sheer amount of frame-dragging, vertical slap wheelies that this bunch of trucks pulled off.
In Friday night action, the hometown bug bit Jeff Bainter early, wiping him out of competition after the wheelie contest. Tyler Groth took the wheelie competition with an amazing double slap-wheelie. Bigfoot and El Matador worked their way into the racing finals with the Oregon native Daron Basl taking the victory by just under half a truck length. Shortly before intermission Roger Stidell approached TMT announcer Scott Heaton and explained that he would not allow Jeff Bainter to sit out freestyle and was handing over controls of his Destroyer machine to his mentor and the local favorite. David Smith opened freestyle with a set of wicked donuts and ran the gamut of the large course to take freestyle with 25 points.
In night 2, Daron Basl stood El Matador straight up and down on a fresh van stack, ripping off the tailgate and bedsides, and then pulled a slap wheelie to easily claim the wheelie contest victory. The racing finals was a re-match of Friday, only this time Basl knocked down a turning pole and both machines got crooked in the turns. Swim in Bigfoot was able to gather it up first and took the win. Double Trouble brought the entire grandstand to it’s feet during Saturday’s freestyle with several great saves and some jaw dropping air. He came up one point short to the blistering, action filled run of Daron Basl however, who scored 28 of possible 30 points.
Toughest: Daron Basl – El Matador
Wheelie: Tyler Groth – Double Trouble
Racing: Daron Basl – El Matador
Freestyle: David Smith – King Krunch
Toughest: Larry Swim – Bigfoot
Wheelie: Daron Basl – El Matador
Racing: Larry Swim – Bigfoot
Freestyle: Daron Basl – El Matador