It was growing up on a farm that led
popular Californian Dan Rodoni to eventually work on monster trucks and get
behind the wheel driving them. Rodoni was raised in Santa Cruz, California, on
a family-owned brussels sprouts farm. This is where he had his first job
wrenching and fabricating, working on farm equipment, trucks, and tractors.
Rodoni always had a passion for large trucks and was known in his hometown for
driving some of the biggest, lifted trucks most people had ever seen. His passion
for lifted trucks and his natural mechanical ability led Rodoni to pursue a
four-wheel-drive business. He left the family farming business in 1995 and
started a four-wheel-drive shop called Central Coast Four Wheel Drive. Rodoni owned
and operated it quite successfully for more than 10 years. During the same
time, he thrilled monster truck fans while he was behind the wheel of his
truck, The Patriot. Throughout the western United States and throughout the
sport, Rodoni is well-known for The Patriot as his great successes at Advance
Auto Parts Monster Jam® events have been televised on Speed.
Q&A with Dan Rodoni
MonsterJam.com: How did you get started
competing on the Monster Jam circuit?
got my start in monster trucks in 2001 by helping the Team Meents crew in the
evenings and on weekends when the team was on the West Coast. I traveled with the
team when I could, in 2001-2003, and decided to build my own truck in
2003. In 2003, after a trip to the Texas-based Race Source shop and the
home of Pablo Huffaker, plans were under way to build The Patriot. The chassis
was finished in fall 2003 and we spent the next six months getting the truck
ready for the first show. I made my debut in Yakima, Washington, driving the
Patriot in June 2004.
MonsterJam.com: What do you enjoy most about
competing in Advance Auto Parts Monster Jam?
a team, we have made several modifications and upgrades to the trucks over the
years and continually strive to be as competitive as we can be. I love this
sport and am grateful to be a part of such a great group of people. I can’t
begin to describe the feeling I get from 50,000 fans going crazy after one of
my freestyles. It is impossible to put into words.
My success is only as
good as my help, and I have a great team!
MonsterJam.com: What do you do with your free
Rodoni: I’m an a
vid hunter and I enjoy archery, and,
of course, 4x4s.
MonsterJam.com: What is your greatest memory
as a monster truck driver?
In 2005 at the Monster Jam awards
banquet, I was awarded “Rookie of the Year” and nominated for donut of the
year. I then decided to expand the team to two trucks. My favorite stop on the
Monster Jam tour has to be Anaheim’s Angels Stadium. It was there in 2005 that I
captured my first stadium racing win during my rookie year, in front of my
family and 45,000 fans. Then in 2009, it was again in Angels Stadium, where I
was one point short of a televised stadium freestyle victory; so that is
another favorite worth mentioning.
MonsterJam.com: What’s your favorite food?
MonsterJam.com: What’s your favorite movie?
MonsterJam.com: What’s your favorite color?
Blue and green
Name: The Patriot
size: 540 CI Dart Motor
Transmission: Coan 2-speed Monsterglide
RaceSource Triple Bypass
Sponsors: Central Coast Four Wheel Drive, South Bay Driveline, Dart Machine,
Bayside Oil, M2D Camo, Permacool, MSD