Alabama TDC team heads to nationals this week
Tuesday, August 12, 2014
Posted by: Ford Boswell
Class winners from the 2014 Alabama Truck Driving Championships are in Pittsburgh, Pa. this week to compete in the National Truck Driving Championships and National Step Van Driving Championships.
The four-day competition starts today and ends with an awards ceremony on Saturday, August 16.
Known as the Super Bowl of Safety, the event is produced by the American Trucking Associations and will draw 426 drivers from all 50 states. Drivers will compete in eight different classes, from 18-wheeled five-axle sleepers to tank trucks to twin trailers to straight trucks.
Alabama’s team includes current state TDC Grand Champion Gary Nuckolls of AAA Cooper Transportation, who posted the highest overall combined score of 364 points, earning the right to lift the big trophy at the Alabama Trucking Association’s competition held last June in Pelham, Ala. It was his second straight state Grand Champion title.
A former Alabama Truck Driver of the Year (2004) and a class winner at numerous Alabama TDCs, Nuckolls won the 4-Axle Van class by 73 points, edging his closest class winner by 33 points. He even improved his overall high score from the previous year by more than 30 points.
“He has been one of the more consistently dominant competitors of the last decade,” said ATA Director of Safety Tim Frazier, who oversees Alabama’s tournament. “He wins or places in the top three nearly every year. We even have requests from other competitors asking which class he is going to be in so they can move to another one.”
Other competitors are Mike Manzella of Wal-Mart Transportation, Five-Axle; Mike Umphrey of Conway Freight, Three Axle; Rusty Holmes of UPS Freight, Tank Trailer; Steve Brannen of Wal-Mart Transportation, Sleeper Berth; Stephen Pressley of AAA Cooper, Flatbed; Glenn Murks of Wal-Mart Transportation, Straight Truck; and Tony Johnson of UPS Freight, Step Van.
According to National ATA, this year's event will include 23 first-time participants and 11 women. The eight categories include:
- Straight Truck
- Three-Axle Tractor-Semitrailer
- Four-Axle Tractor-Semitrailer
- Five-Axle Tractor-Semitrailer (Tank)
- Five-Axle Tractor-Semitrailer (Van)
- Five-Axle Tractor-Semitrailer (Flatbed)
- Five-Axle Tractor (Sleeper Cab) -Semitrailer (Van)
- Twin Trailers
For more information, visit the event page at National ATA’s website: http://bit.ly/1jG0AQs