Monster Jam lives up to its hype; drawing at least 30,000 in Saudi capital

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Mohawk Warrior performs a spine-tingling acrobatic feat.
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Motorbike riders make a mid-air acrobatic move. (AN photo by Ahmed Fadhi)
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Updated 19 March 2017
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Monster Jam lives up to its hype; drawing at least 30,000 in Saudi capital

RIYADH: Monster Jam lived up to its hype on the opening of its two-night show at the King Fahd International Stadium in the Saudi capital late Friday.
The wide parking area around the stadium started to fill early, while many truck fans walked long distances and then queued up for their tickets with prices starting SR30.
The Monster Truck jam is the first in Saudi Arabia and part of an aggressive push by the General Authority for Entertainment to bring quality entertainment acts from Western countries and the Gulf to the Kingdom.
By providing broader entertainment opportunities for Saudis, the government expects to create more jobs and infuse the economy with additional revenue. From a cultural standpoint the added entertainment provides an outlet for Saudi youths that encourages them to become more engaged in the community.
While waiting for the show to kick off, a remote-controlled drone equipped with a camera caught the attention of the crowed as it flew around the stadium. This broke the boredom of the waiting crowd who often broke into applause or shouted their approval.
Abdulrauf Al-Baijan, executive managing director of Global Sports Gate, had his hands full as he went around the 67,000-seat stadium to make sure that everything was all right.
Al-Baijan said 30,000 tickets had been sold for opening night for the fans to watch the legendary drivers in 4-meter-tall, 5-ton Monster Jam trucks perform stunts.
Built for short, high-powered bursts of speed, the vehicles generate 1,500 to 2,000 horsepower and can reach up to 100 miles per hour. Monster Jam trucks can fly across 130 feet, a distance greater than 14 cars side by side, and up to 35 feet in the air.
The trucks, which loomed like monsters out of a “Transformers” movie, were emblazoned with names like Mohawk Warrior, Blue Thunder, Hot Wheels and Superman, among others and did not fail to impress the crowd.
Spectators reacted with excitement over the antics of the vehicles as well as the motorcyclists who displayed dazzling acrobatic skills, inevitably evoking a mixture of fear and excitement among the adoring crowd.
The stentorian voice of the announcer — Turki Binmusaibih — punctuated the entertainment as he described developments inside the stadium with the noise of the Monster Jam trucks as a backdrop.
Faisal Al-Basher, an engineer who watched the show with his two boys, said, “It is good and it is the first time being held here.”
Wessam Al-Sarhi, an engineer, added, “the show is nice and it should be held in the Kingdom every six months or even every year since Saudis like to see something new.”
Al-Baijan told Arab News, “For the success of the event, I want to extend my thanks to Samer Al-Mishehal, CEO of Live Entertainment Company which organized the event.”


Kingdom's anti-corruption chief leads Saudi delegation at UN General Assembly

Dr. Khalid bin Abdul Mohsen Al-Muhaisen, president of Nazaha and head of the Saudi delegation, will stress the Kingdom’s anti-corruption efforts locally and internationally. (Shutterstock)
Updated 23 May 2018
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Kingdom's anti-corruption chief leads Saudi delegation at UN General Assembly

  • The meeting will be attended by UNGA President Miroslav Lajcak, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and Yuri Fedotov, executive director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia, represented by a delegation from the National Anti-Corruption Commission (Nazaha), will take part on Wednesday in a high-level meeting of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) to mark 15 years since the adoption of the UN Convention against Corruption. 

The meeting will be attended by UNGA President Miroslav Lajcak, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and Yuri Fedotov, executive director of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime.

The opening session will discuss the most notable developments and best practices in the application of the UN Convention against Corruption, which has been adopted by 184 countries, including Saudi Arabia. The meeting will conclude with a speech by Lajcak.

Dr. Khalid bin Abdul Mohsen Al-Muhaisen, president of Nazaha and head of the Saudi delegation, will stress the Kingdom’s anti-corruption efforts locally and internationally.