Tuesday, April 24, 2012

2012 Virginia Truck Driving Champions Crowned

Nine professional Virginia truck drivers were crowned 2012 "Champions of the Highway" at the 61st annual Virginia Truck Driving Championships held April 20 and 21 at the Lee Hi Travel Plaza in Lexington, Virginia.

The annual Virginia Truck Driving Championships showcases the safe driving skills and professionalism of Virginia's best truck drivers in a safety-oriented competition.

The first place champions, their hometown, their company, and home terminal location are:

Step Van Class: Mark Brundage of Leesburg – FedEx Express, Herndon

Straight Truck Class: John Davis, II of Wytheville – ABF Freight System, Inc, Wytheville

3-Axle Class: Stephen Manning, Jr. of Elliston – UPS Freight, Roanoke

4-Axle Class: Randy Ebinger of Haymarket – YRC, Inc, Manassas

5-Axle Van Class: Timothy Copeland of Suffolk – Wal-mart Transportation, LLC, Sutherland

5-Axle Flatbed Class: James Hines of Richmond – Wal-mart Transportation, LLC, Sutherland 

5-Axle Tank Class: Joseph Clements of Chesterfield – UPS Freight, Richmond 

Sleeper Berth Class: Douglas Padgett of Alexandria – Robinson Terminal Warehouse Corp., Springfield 

Twin-Trailer Class: Hector Novoa of Aldie – FedEx Ground, Chantilly

A total of 83 professional truck drivers from across the state entered the contest - representing 11 different companies. First time contestants totaled 31. The event is sponsored by the Virginia Trucking Association and its Safety Management Council and is patterned after the American Trucking Associations’ National Truck Driving Championships. The first-place champions listed above will represent Virginia in the National Championships to be held August 7-11 in Minneapolis, MN.

The winner of the Neill Darmstadter Memorial Grand Champion Award and accompanying $200 Savings Bond was Joseph Clements of Chesterfield, driver for UPS Freight out of their Richmond, VA terminal. The Grand Champion Award is presented each year to the driver with the highest score of all the competitors. Clements scored 375 points out of a possible 480 points. Clements has been a professional truck driver for 30 years and 26 of those years with UPS Freight.

The Captain Roy M. Terry Memorial Pre-Trip Inspection Award, which is given to the driver with the highest score in the equipment defects portion of the competition, was won by Ron Regan of Richmond, driver for YRC, Inc., Richmond.

The Rookie of the Year Award and accompanying $100 Savings Bond was presented to Stephen Manning, Jr. of Elliston, driver for UPS Freight in Roanoke. This award is presented each year to the highest scoring, first-time competitor and can only be won once by a driver. Manning scored 343 points.

The Team Trophy was won by ABF Freight System, Inc. of Fort Smith, AR. This award is presented to the company with the highest average score of all its drivers.

Other winners in the competition by class, with their hometown, company and home terminal are:

Step Van - 2nd Daniel Woods – FedEx Express, Christiansburg; 3rd Matthew Bartnett – FedEx Ground, Fredericksburg

Straight Truck - 2nd: Nevin Brill –Con-way Freight, Winchester; 3rd: Ashby Lane – Wal-mart Transportation, LLC, Sutherland

3-Axle - 2nd: Tommy Staubs – FedEx Express, Dulles; 3rd: Michael Stickley – Con-way Freight, Winchester

4-Axle -2nd Jonathan Bryant – YRC, Inc., Fishersville; 3rd: David Gleaves – Con-way Freight, Winchester

5-Axle Van - 2nd: Mark Salzone – Frito-Lay, Inc., Lynchburg; 3rd: Stacy Warren – Con-way Freight, Wytheville

Tank - 2nd: Mike Barnes – Wal-mart Transportation, LLC, Mt Crawford; 3rd: Tony Wright – Con-way Freight, Wytheville 

Flatbed - 2nd: Justin Lipps – Con-way Freight, Winchester; 3rd: Mike West – YRC, Inc., Roanoke 

Sleeper Berth - 2nd: Mark Stephens – Wal-mart Transporation, LLC, Mt. Crawford; 3rd: David Boyer – ABF Freight Systems, Wytheville 

Twin Trailers - 2nd: Marty Hogan – UPS Freight, Roanoke; 3rd: Robbie Cottrell – Con-way Freight, Roanoke

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