Hairdresser-turned-truck-driver will be behind the wheel when Monster Jam makes Nutter stop

Five-time Monster Jam World Finals Brianna Mahon will be behind the wheel of Whiplash. CONTRIBUTED/FELD ENTERTAINMENT INC.

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Five-time Monster Jam World Finals Brianna Mahon will be behind the wheel of Whiplash. CONTRIBUTED/FELD ENTERTAINMENT INC.

Monster Jam rolls into Dayton’s Nutter Center Oct. 29-30

Brianna Mahon has been racing almost as long as she has been walking.

“I raced dirt bikes when I was 3 and then snowmobiles and four-wheelers,” Mahon said. “I come from a racing background, so I’ve always been around it.”

That’s not to say she didn’t participate in more traditional childhood activities like dance, tumbling and even show choir.

“But I was definitely a tomboy at heart,” she said with a smile.

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And her heart was always on the racetrack. Motocross was her passion early on, competing for several years before enduring a career-ending injury in 2011 at the age of 21. Two major surgeries on her wrist and hand were not enough to get her back on the bike.

“I was really lost, it was a dark time for me,” Mahon said.

Not to be deterred, she bought a sprint car and returned to racing while simultaneously attending cosmetology school. Mahon was content on the local dirt tracks until she received a phone call that would change everything – a call from the Monster Jam University training facility, about an hour south of her Illinois home.

“When the opportunity for Monster Jam presented itself, it worked out great because of all my experience in the motorsports world and I fell in love and had to go for it,” she said.

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Brianna Mahon goes for the save as Whiplash rides the right axel into a save. CONTRIBUTED/FELD ENTERTAINMENT INC.

Brianna Mahon goes for the save as Whiplash rides the right axel into a save. CONTRIBUTED/FELD ENTERTAINMENT INC.

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Brianna Mahon goes for the save as Whiplash rides the right axel into a save. CONTRIBUTED/FELD ENTERTAINMENT INC.

Mahon never looked back as she first took the wheel of Scooby Doo in 2015 and never looked back.

“It was definitely an adjustment, but pretty much anything with a motor in it I love,” she said.

Mahon took to it quickly earning the Rookie of the Year title in 2015. She later became the first female driver to win an overall event championship on the Monster Jam triple threat tour. She still vividly remembers successfully landing her first backflip at the Monster Jam World Finals in 2016.

“That was my main goal during my freestyle run and I was so nervous to try it and then when I landed on all four wheels, I was pumped,” she said.

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Five-time Monster Jam World Finals Brianna Mahon will be behind the wheel of Whiplash. CONTRIBUTED/FELD ENTERTAINMENT INC.

Five-time Monster Jam World Finals Brianna Mahon will be behind the wheel of Whiplash. CONTRIBUTED/FELD ENTERTAINMENT INC.

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Five-time Monster Jam World Finals Brianna Mahon will be behind the wheel of Whiplash. CONTRIBUTED/FELD ENTERTAINMENT INC.

Now driving Whiplash, Mahon will ride into town with other fan favorites like Grave Digger when the Monster Jam tour makes a two-day stop at the Wright State University Nutter Center on Oct. 29-30.

After spending 430 days outside of the truck due to the COVID pandemic, Mahon couldn’t be happier to be back on tour. Just how much did she miss performing the gravity-defying feats in her 12,000-pound truck? So much so that she competed in 10 shows during her honeymoon earlier this year.

“My husband is my biggest fan,” she said.

Mahon also appreciates her young fans, especially the girls who may choose to follow in her footsteps someday.

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“I try to be a positive and respectful role model,” she said. “I pride myself on how I present myself.”

When she is not on tour, she even manages to squeeze in some time in the salon, giving a haircut or two.

“Most of the drivers don’t have other jobs so, in that way, I was lucky because I could still make a living when there wasn’t a tour,” she said. “But I am so happy to be back.”

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Whiplash driver Brianna Mahon was Monster Jam Rookie of the Year in 2015. CONTRIBUTED/FELD ENTERTAINMENT INC.

Whiplash driver Brianna Mahon was Monster Jam Rookie of the Year in 2015. CONTRIBUTED/FELD ENTERTAINMENT INC.

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Whiplash driver Brianna Mahon was Monster Jam Rookie of the Year in 2015. CONTRIBUTED/FELD ENTERTAINMENT INC.

HOW TO GO

LINEUP: Grave Digger (Tyler Menninga), Whiplash (Brianna Mahon), Rage (Cory Rummell), Brutus (Kraig Champion), FTI Torque (Jack Brown), Overbored (Jamey Garner) and Wildside (Zack Garner)

WHEN: Oct. 29, 7 p.m.; Oct. 30, 1 and 7 p.m.

WHERE: Wright State University Nutter Center

TICKETS: Starting at $15, visit www.ticketmaster.com

MORE: Pit Party Oct. 30, 10:30 a.m.-noon, additional ticket required.

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