Joe Sylvester loves trucks.
“My mom told me my first word was truck,” said Sylvester.
He’s owned five of them since he was 16 years old, ranging from a Ford ranger, to a Ford F350, to two Dodges, but his work truck is nothing like any of them.
“This thing here (his truck), is a beast all in itself. It’s absolutely nothing like a normal vehicle. Its nothing like a normal truck.”
That’s because his Cadillac Escalade is a MONSTER truck.
“10,500 pounds. Makes about 1500 horse power. And it can accelerate to 60 miles an hour in about four seconds,” continued Sylvester.
Sixty miles an hour on 66 inch tires. Sylvester has been racing his Bad Habit monster truck for the past eight years. He recently won the Young Guns shootout in Las Vegas.
“Monster truck racing is just like any other type of racing. First guy to cross the finish line wins. It’s heads up racing, two trucks at a time. Freestyle is like an expression session in a 10,000 pound vehicle. Every truck goes out there and has about a minute and a half to perform and wow the crowd and wow the judges.”
But Sylvester’s truck has something that no other race vehicle in the world has, rear steering. “Without the rear steering, you would need a football field to turn one of these things around.”
Sylvester holds the world record for longest ramp jump in a monster truck at 208 feet. And on September 1, he’s going to try to break it again, but this time his goal is 300 feet. That’s the length of a football field.
“Three hundred feet is my ultimate goal. Whether or not we get to that goal this September or not, I’m not going to stop until I get there.”
Sylvester will be competing this weekend at the Canfield Fairgrounds in the “Return of the Monsters”. There will be six monster trucks competing, along with FMX riders. The gates open at 5:00 p.m. and the show begins at 7:00 p.m.