Monster Jam is ready to roll into town

Grave Digger is just one of the high-flying trucks that will race into the Nutter Center for three Monster Jam shows November 23-24. CONTRIBUTED
Grave Digger is just one of the high-flying trucks that will race into the Nutter Center for three Monster Jam shows November 23-24. CONTRIBUTED

Like father like daughter, and like brother like sister.

Krysten Anderson is following in the footsteps of her dad, Dennis, and brothers, Adam and Ryan, when she gets behind the wheel of her monster truck — but not just any truck.

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It’s Grave Digger. Krysten is the first-ever female driver of fan-favorite Grave Digger.

Monster trucks are a family affair as Dennis Anderson was the original Grave Digger driver, competing for 35 years. Adam also drives Grave Digger while Ryan drives Son of a Digger.

Grave Digger is just one of the high-flying trucks that will race into the Nutter Center for three Monster Jam shows November 23-24. From head-to-head racing to a two-wheel skills competition and donuts to freestyle events, there will be plenty to cheer about. But the fans will do more than applaud, they will also serve as judges as they can vote for the winner in the two-wheel and freestyle competitions by real-time, in-stadium voting on their smartphones.

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Grave Digger is just one of the high-flying trucks that will race into the Nutter Center for three Monster Jam shows November 23-24. CONTRIBUTED
Grave Digger is just one of the high-flying trucks that will race into the Nutter Center for three Monster Jam shows November 23-24. CONTRIBUTED

Credit: SHAWN HANCOCK

Credit: SHAWN HANCOCK

It’s those enthusiastic fans that make Monster Jam so rewarding for Anderson.

“Our fans are amazing. They love you no matter what,” she said. “They’re very loyal, we’re really lucky.”

Krysten Anderson is the first female driver of fan-favorite Grave Digger. Grave Digger is just one of the high-flying trucks that will race into the Nutter Center for three Monster Jam shows Nov. 23-24. CONTRIBUTED
Krysten Anderson is the first female driver of fan-favorite Grave Digger. Grave Digger is just one of the high-flying trucks that will race into the Nutter Center for three Monster Jam shows Nov. 23-24. CONTRIBUTED

Anderson has the added benefit of knowing her racing family also has her back. A love of motorsports, after all, is in their blood.

“I have always had a passion for motorsports; we all have,” Krysten said of her brothers. “Other kids would get video games for Christmas. We’d get dirt bikes and four-wheelers. It was great.”

The self-proclaimed daddy’s girls also vividly remember playing with Grave Digger toys when she was a kid. But, as soon as she was old enough, she graduated to the real deal.”

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Anderson, now 22, started training when she was 18 and it wasn’t long before she joined the Monster Jam ranks. While she has several years under her belt, the pressure remains.

While the number of female drivers has increased in recent years – there are currently 16 competing on five different tours – Anderson is still a female in a male-dominated field. She drives Grave Digger, a truck that carries with it a long history and high expectations. And she is the fourth Anderson to try their hand at the four-wheel excitement of Monster Jam.

“Being a female in this sport, there are a lot of eyeballs on you,” she said. “But you can’t make a diamond without a lot of pressure.”

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MONSTER JAM BY THE NUMBERS

12: Height, in feet, of a Monster Jam truck

350: Monster Jam events held annually around the world

1,500: Horsepower of the trucks

12,000: Weight, in pounds, of a Monster Jam truck

100,000: Truckloads of dirt used to create Monster Jam tracks each year, 6,000 tons is used for each stadium track

WANT TO GO?

When: Saturday, Nov. 23, 1 and 7 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 24, 1 p.m.

Where: Wright State University Nutter Center

More: Meet the drivers and get up close with the monster trucks at the Pit Party, Saturday and Sunday, 10:30 a.m.-noon, must have corresponding event ticket to purchase a pit pass.

Tickets: Start at $15, Pit Party passes start at $12, available through Ticketmaster or at the Nutter Center box office

More info: Website