January 19-20, Monster Jam cruises into the BMO Harris Bradley Center.

We spoke with Tony Ochs, driver of the Soldier Fortune Black Ops truck, about the adrenaline-packed rally.

What drew you to this sport?

I grew up riding ATVs and all types of sports vehicles. I started competing with Monster Jam in 2016, after spending 10 years in the Army. Every time I drive, I pay tribute to veterans and soldiers.

These Monster Trucks are about 10 feet tall and weigh 12,000 pounds. How can this be safe?

The driver’s compartment is a steel safety structure, built from tubing and mounted to the truck frame. All drivers wear head-to-toe fire-retardant gear and are strapped into a custom-made seat with a five-point harness.

What type of special training is needed?

All drivers have to go through Monster Jam University, where they train with 11-time world champion Tom  Meents. You also have to be physically and mentally fit to keep up – I thank the Army for that.

What should guests expect to see?

There’s ATV racing, a timed obstacle course and head-to-head racing with speedsters (side-by-side UTVs) – complete with jumps of up to 40 feet. The freestyle competition is always an audience favorite. Drivers do stunts  like donuts, balancing acts or nose-wheelies.

GO SEE IT: Tickets start at $15. Visit monsterjam.com for more information.

‘Rallying Cry’ appears in the January 2018 issue of Milwaukee Magazine.

Find it on newsstands beginning January 1, or buy a copy at milwaukeemag.com/shop.

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