Ata Truck Driving Championships 64e36b92f3ad3

Tank hauler wins ATA's top truck driving prize

Aug. 21, 2023
Gragg Wilson, a UPS driver who competes in the tank truck division, claims Bendix Grand Champion honor during 2023 National Truck Driving Championships

James Gragg Wilson, a Nevada-based United Parcel Service driver, was crowned as Bendix Grand Champion of the American Trucking Associations’ 2023 National Truck Driving Championships on Aug. 19 in Columbus, Ohio.

“Gragg delivered a flawless performance to take home our industry’s top prize and earn the title of Grand Champion,” Chris Spear, ATA president and CEO, said in a news release. “This accomplishment epitomizes his entire career, with 37 years and more than 2.5 million miles of accident-free driving.

“All of the professional drivers who competed this week are phenomenal ambassadors for our industry. They are shining examples of highway safety, and their commitment to excellence makes us proud.”

Known as the “Super Bowl of Safety,” the annual ATA event dates to 1937. This year’s competitors accumulated more than 643 million accident-free miles in their professional driving careers.

To clinch the title of Bendix Grand Champion, Wilson’s driving accuracy and knowledge of truck safety was scored the highest of 418 state champion professional truck drivers from 49 states competing in all vehicle classes this week. 

Wilson, who competed in the tank truck division, has been a professional truck driver for 37 years and has driven more than 2.5 million accident-free miles. He has previously won the Nevada State Championship 13 times in six different classes, and he has also won Grand Champion five times in the State of Nevada. Wilson was the 2019 Nevada Driver of the Year.

ATA also recognized Myron Means of Wyoming, a professional driver for Old Dominion Freight Line, as the 2023 Rookie of the Year. Additionally, the team of drivers from Connecticut produced the best collective score and were honored as the top state delegation.

Professionalism and dedication to the trucking industry were key themes during the National Truck Driving Championships. Ina Daly of Arizona, a professional driver for XPO Logistics, was honored during the awards banquet with the Neill Darmstadter Professional Excellence Award. Bill Graham was chosen as the Lifetime Volunteer Award recipient.

“Congratulations to Grand Champion Gragg and the rest of the 2023 champions. These drivers devote an enormous amount of time preparing for this competition, and the awards reflect the extraordinary dedication and commitment to safety that they bring to their jobs every day,” said Dan Van Alstine, ATA chairman and Ruan Transportation Management Systems president and COO.  “I would also like to thank the staff and volunteers for organizing this week’s event. Their efforts were instrumental to once again making NTDC a big success.”

Champions from each of the nine vehicle classes were also announced. The full list of champions and top finishers is below:

Step van

  1. Jerome De La Cruz, FedEx Express, Alaska
  2. Gregory Long, FedEx Express Maryland
  3.  Alex Lofgren, FedEx Express Minnesota

Straight truck

  1. David Coffel, FedEx Express, Arizona
  2. William Colantuone, FedEx Express, Massachusetts
  3. James Kohr, FedEx Express, New York


  1. Barry Kraemer, XPO, Wisconsin
  2. Joseph Hicks, XPO, Rhode Island
  3. Ritch Fundell, FedEx Freight, Illinois


  1.  Martin McMahon, RIST Transport, New York
  2. Bruce Quaal, ABF Freight System, Inc. Minnesota
  3. Adam Heim, FedEx Freight, Idaho


  1. John Greene, FedEx Freight, Connecticut
  2. James Quarles, Wal-Mart Transportation, LLC South Carolina
  3. Michael Martin, Wal-Mart Transportation, LLC


  1. Daryl Miller, The Cope Company Salt, Pennsylvania
  2. Ernest Wagers, Old Dominion Freight Line, Inc., Kentucky
  3. James Sowder, FedEx Freight, Tennessee

Tank truck

  1. James “Gragg” Wilson, United Parcel Service, Inc., Nevada
  2. Jason Imhoff, Wal-Mart Transportation, LLC, Ohio
  3. Timothy Vogt, XPO, Georgia


  1. Robert Fair, FedEx Freight, New Hampshire
  2. Jeffrey Langenhahn, XPO Wisconsin
  3. Michael Flippin, FedEx Freight, Colorado

Sleeper berth

  1. Roland Bolduc, FedEx Express, Connecticut
  2. Chris Moore, Wal-Mart Transportation, LLC, Georgia
  3. Tyler Rogers, FedEx Freight, Colorado

Other awards

Rookie of the Year

  • Myron Means, Old Dominion Freight Line, Inc., Flatbed, Wyoming

State team award

  1. Connecticut
  2.  Illinois
  3. Tennessee

Vehicle condition award

  • Timothy Blair, FedEx Freight, 5-Axle, Tennessee

Highest written exam award

  1. Michael Bills, FedEx Express, North Carolina
  2. David Comings, FedEx Freight, North Dakota
  3. David Mogler, FedEx Freight, Colorado
  4. Michael Flippin, FedEx Freight, Colorado

Neill Darmstadter orofessional excellence award

  • Ina Daly, XPO Logistics, Arizona

Lifetime volunteer award

  • Bill Graham
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