Entertainment & Life

First female will take the wheel of this monster at Golden 1 Center

“The Grave Digger”
“The Grave Digger” Monster Jam/Feld Entertainment

For Krysten Anderson, 20, monster trucks are all in the family.

Anderson will be racing Grave Digger as part of the Monster Jam Triple Threat Series, which comes to Golden 1 Center Friday through Sunday.

Anderson is the first female driver of Grave Digger. Her father, Dennis Anderson, created the truck.

“It took a really long time to get a female in the seat of Grave Digger, like 35 years actually, but it feels pretty good to be the first female, I’m pretty proud,” Anderson said.

Anderson will be joined by seven other racers: Armando Castro, driving El Toro Loco; Cynthia Gauthier, driving Monster Mutt Dalmatian; Camden Murphy, driving Pirate’s Curse; Bernard Lyght, driving Alien Invasion; Tristan England, driving EarthShaker; Travis Groth driving Megalodon; and Tyler Groth, driving Zombie.

Four of the trucks – Megalodon, EarthShaker, Alien Invasion and Pirate’s Curse – are also making their first appearances in Sacramento. All will compete for the championship using customized, high-powered vehicles.

Anderson had many months of training and practice before performing live. She started racing Grave Digger last year.

“Well, to drive Grave Digger, it’s (a) pretty big responsibility, because Monster Jam fans are really great, but Grave Digger fans ... when that truck pulls out on the track, people are really freaking out,” Anderson said.

“It doesn’t really put a lot of pressure, I guess, on me, but it kind of gets my adrenaline pumping,” she added.

The loyalty of Grave Digger’s fans hasn’t gone unnoticed by Anderson, either.

“That’s probably my favorite part about driving it, I would say, is how loyal the fans are,” she says, noting how there’s fans of the truck everywhere.

In addition to their trucks, the racers will also use Monster Jam Speedsters and Monster Jam ATVs, pushing themselves physically during the Triple Threat, Anderson said.

“The Triple Threat series is really physically enduring compared to the other arena series or the stadium series ... we’re doing so much: getting out of the trucks, switching into our gear, getting on the four-wheeler, getting off the four-wheeler, back into the truck, out of the truck, into the speedster, back into the truck,” she said.

And for Anderson, being behind the wheel of the truck doesn’t make her nervous. Well, except for one thing.

“The only thing that makes me nervous is losing,” Anderson says.

Monster Jam Triple Threat Series

When: January 19-21, 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 1 p.m. on Sunday

Where: Golden 1 Center, 500 Davis J Stern Walk

Cost: $15 - $75

Info: monsterjam.com