It seems appropriate in this era of female empowerment that 24-year-old Collette Davis is mixing it up with the boys and their monster trucks.
She's one of the newest faces in the rough-and-tumble sport of Monster Jam, keeping up and often showing up the guys with her candy-apple red Wonder Woman truck fully equipped with a golden lasso in the cab.
She'll perform Friday through Sunday at The Broadmoor World Arena.
"One of the best things is, I go out there every weekend and represent all things girl power," said Davis from her home in Los Angeles. "Driving the Wonder Woman truck is a symbol of strong women and girl power. I can reach out to all the little girls now after events and inspire them to believe in themselves and grow up to be whatever they want to be."
For Davis, a 2010 Fountain-Fort Carson High School graduate, racing was an early love that started with go-karts. That, coupled with a desire to take things apart and put them back together, such as computers and lawnmowers, eventually led her to work on and race sports cars.
"It wasn't until I was 15 that I discovered racing was a sport," she said. "Nobody in my family was in the industry. I knew it was the ultimate sport for me. It was everything I loved about competition and science and engineering as well as being able to work on cars."
Before her monster truck debut last year, she raced in the Red Bull Global Rallycross series. A trip to the Monster Jam World Finals more than a year ago changed her career path.
"There's no other vehicle like a Monster Jam truck in the world," she said.
She auditioned and was accepted into Monster Jam University in Paxton, Ill., where she spent more than a month learning how to maneuver her 12,000-pound, 12-feet-tall truck, stay safe and do crazy stunts, such as wheelies, toppers and handstands, where she makes the truck stand on its two front wheels.
"In regular motor sports or other forms of racing, there are elements going on where you're going forward, left or right," she said. "In monster trucks, there are more elements to understand as a driver. We're going up 20 to 30 feet in the air and landing sideways. You need to know where your wheels are in the air at all times. It's precision driving."
In more than a decade of racing, Davis naturally has faced some pushback from male racers who didn't want a lady anywhere near the track. She takes it in stride, and it's easy to see how she fits the persona of the truck she now drives.
"It hasn't always been easy," she said. "There aren't that many girls at racetracks, much less girls competing with guys. In the beginning, I got pushed off the track or guys tried to push me off the track, but you have to put your elbows up and push them back. Gain that respect. Put your stake in the ground and let people know you're there to compete. You can't pay much attention to it and let your driving speak for itself."