Thursday, 10 August 2017 10:40
This week, American Trucking Associations has welcomed more than 420 of the trucking industry's top professional truck drivers to Orlando for the 80th annual National Truck Driving Championships and National Step Van Driving Championships.
"Safety and precision will be the focus of these impressive professional truck drivers during this week in Orlando as they compete for honors at the National Truck Driving Championships," said ATA President and CEO Chris Spear. "Truck drivers work their entire careers and practice for moments like this to showcase their safety skills and compete among friends."
The National Truck Driving Championships opened August 9th with competitors taking a walk-through of the driving course and registering for the different class events. From there, competitors will go on to compete in three phases of competition: a written examination testing background knowledge of rules and procedures pertinent to the trucking industry, a vehicle inspection to test competitors' ability to detect vehicle malfunctions, and a driving skills test where competitors are graded on their ability to operate a truck through a series of obstacles.
Over three days, 428 competitors from all 50 states, including 35 first-time participants, representing 97 companies will compete for honors in one of eight different classes and the distinction of being crowned National Truck Driving Championships Bendix Grand Champion.
"These championships are a great spectacle and I couldn't be more proud to interact with drivers from all corners of the country," said ATA Chairman Kevin Burch, President of Jet Express Inc. "The drivers take this event very seriously and practice and study year-round in preparation for the competition. Their dedication to their craft is really remarkable and representative of the trucking industry's strong commitment to safety."
The competition concludes on Aug. 12 with the announcement of the National Truck Driving Championships Bendix Grand Champion, along with the winners of each vehicle class and awards for the top performing state delegation, rookie of the year, and other recognitions.
Competitors representing the state of West Virginia include:
Sleeper Berth – William. E. Adkins
Flatbed – James E. Beall
Twins – Gregory O. Brooks
Straight Truck – Larry A. Gorby, Jr.
Tank Truck – Kenneth J. Grimmett
Three-Axle – Darrell M. Meadows
Five-Axle – Jason Smith
Four-Axle – Randy E. Thomas
Step Van – Robert F. Vance