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Monster truck - big dreams come true.

By Leslie A. Panfil The Post contributor - Sep 16, 2012
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Mileti Bros Motorsports’ upcoming charity event is one of the many philanthropic projects owner Kevin Mileti has committed to over the last year. His nearly fatal congenital heart defect solidified his life goals turning him from a tow truck business owner to monster truck promoter.

The North Royalton Class of 2001 alumnus, Mileti explained, “I had a towing business when I was faced with two open heart surgeries. When the second one didn’t go so well, I was out of work for a year and lost a lot of clients.”

Like many of life’s challenges, his health set back was the impetus for pursing his dream of owning a monster truck and promotion company. The 29-year-old said he knew it was now or never. But, it was no small undertaking.

Monster trucks run anywhere from $80,000-$100,000. And that is just the tip of the iceberg. Fueled with pricy alcohol, this nearly 5 ton monster vehicle tops off its tank at 15 gallons and burns through 3-4 gallons per minute. “The alcohol is a highly corrosive agent and requires a lot of maintenance,” said Mileti.

The self proclaimed gearhead, does all of his maintenance, but parts which break frequently when performing car crushing stunts, run nearly $100,000 a year. “I’ve been fascinated with anything that has wheels since I was 14 years old,” he said.

His vehicle, Screamin’ Demon, has been immortalized in a toy for Hot Wheels. Although he admits it may be hard to find these days since they are currently phasing the edition out to replace it with the vehicle’s new color scheme of white and green. The new edition is scheduled to hit the market in the spring.

The actual monster truck boasts of a 1500 horsepower engine (the average truck has a 200 horsepower engine.) It weighs 11,000 pounds (the average truck weighs 6,000.) It can go up to 70 mph and fly 30 feet in the air. And while it has a standard Ford Truck body, it has wheels that measure 5 feet 5 inches in height.

If maneuvering a vehicle that size sounds dangerous, it is. The truck features a seat placed in the center of the cab that has been specially molded to fit Mileti and includes seatbelts similar to those used in acrobatic airplanes. “Once I’m strapped in there I literally cannot move,” said Mileti. He also wears a flame retardant suit and helmet.

Mileti recoups some of the enormous cost of running and displaying the vehicle through sponsorships deals with Quaker Steak and Lube, Bob Gillingham Ford, 4 Wheel Parts Cleveland and D&S Color Supply. Using the vehicle as a billboard begins at $10,000 and display days run around $500 for four hours. “A lot depends upon how far away the event is and exactly what the client wants to do,” explained Mileti.

Merely transporting the vehicle to an event requires a hauler valued at $100,000. He also participates in the Monster Truck circuit.

“I look to book about 20 events this coming year,” he said.

To get an up close and personal look at the Screamin’ Demon and support the efforts of The Cleveland Clinic’s Children’s Hospital, head on out to Quaker Steak and Lube 5935 Canal Road, Valley View, September 30, 2012 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The monster truck car crush car is scheduled for 3 p.m., with posters signing and photo opportunities half an hour before and after the car crush. The event is a “touch a truck” event feature a wide variety of trucks from Screamin’ Demon to cement trucks.

To keep up to date with all of Mileti Bros Motorsports’ events check out their Facebook page: Screamin’ Demon Monster Truck.




A trumpet, a truck and toys for kids affected by Superstorm Sandy: Michael K. McIntyre's Tipoff

By Michael K. McIntyre - December 01, 2012
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Jazz trumpeter Dominick Farinacci isn't blowing his own horn, we are: He's going all out, along with Screamin' Demon monster truck owner/driver Kevin Mileti – owner of towing business in North Royalton -- to collect toys for kids affected by Superstorm Sandy.

The campaign was kicked off with three benefit concerts this month in New York City, where Farinacci, a Northeast Ohio native, now lives. It continues today (Saturday) at noon with live jazz starting at 2 p.m. at Mahall's 20 Lanes, 13200 Madison Ave., Lakewood.

Call 216-521-3280 or visit Mahall's Facebook page for details.

Farinacci and Mileti have teamed up with the U.S. Marine Corps Toys for Tots program to present "A Trumpet, A Truck and our Toys for Tots."

Can't make the concert? Quaker Steak and Lube locations will gladly accept toy donations (and you can see the Screamin' Demon there from 4 to 8 p.m. today), as will Fire Departments in North Royalton, North Olmsted, Hinkley (and the Hinkley Police Department) and 4 Wheel Parts, 10865 Brookpark Rd., Cleveland.