It was less than a year ago the hype began building about a world record attempt in a monster truck. A record that stood for over 11 years was beaten, not without a bit of controversy. Last year, with a new truck, and improved technology, it fell once again.
But the saying is records are made to be broken, and once again that record is being chased.
Possibly the most popular single-truck, independent drivers on the monster truck circuit, Joe Sylvester, has officially announced that he will once again take his Bad Habit Cadillac out to the Cornfield 500 in Columbus, Pennsylvania, and take on the newly broken monster truck long jump record. It is the same location that in 2010 saw Sylvester break the record, but also do it in a truck that he had just days to repair after a frightening practice crash.
Since then, Sylvester has made many improvements to the truck, and has some strong sponsors to back him up to make sure the truck is ready for his attempt.
The biggest improvements to Sylvester's truck is the chassis itself and also the suspension. Between 2010 and 2012 the Bad Habit machine had some stronger tubing put in the cradle of the chassis, between the axles. This gave the truck more stability, allowing it to handle hard landings a lot better.
The suspension in the truck has gone under the most change in the last four years. Sylvester had the truck sitting high with it's coil-over shocks alongside the air-oil shocks on each corner.
For 2011 and 2012, the truck received a more traditional look with the standard nitrogen-charged shocks on each corner, going away from the coils. It worked very well, and actually seemed to improve the handling because Sylvester was able to have he and the crew set the truck up lower, giving it a better center of gravity and improved handling.
This year, Sylvester is back to having the coil-over shocks on the truck, but if anything the new suspension is working wonders on the Cadillac Escalade.
His truck has never looked better, thanks to KMC Wheels having custom covers for his 66" tires, and the addition of the Rigid Industries LED Lighting on both the roof and the front bumper. The first weekend out with the LED lights attached was a special one for Sylvester and crew, as he would win the Young Guns Shootout in Las Vegas, his first time at the World Finals, and qualify for the main event.
He's always been one to go after the impossible, and prove that despite not having the big team or the biggest name, he can hang with the top trucks and drivers in the sport.
Now, he's once again going after the biggest dog in the yard. The truck is capable, the driver is fearless, and the record is attainable.
The question is...can he do it?
Without question, people will be wondering if he could and would go after it, but that was the same thought back in 2010 when he first went after such a record. This is just the second round, and Sylvester is at the controls.
Sylvester's attempt at the current long jump world record, held by Bigfoot driver Dan Runte at 214 feet and 8 inches, will happen at the Cornfield 500 in Columbus, Pennsylvania, on Labor Day weekend.