Dennis Shirar, a Heritage Transport LLC professional truck driver based in Indianapolis IN was named the 2008 National Truck Driving Grand Champion, according to information from the American Trucking Associations (ATA).
Shirar’s driving skills and knowledge of transportation and truck safety information topped those of 375 other professional drivers from across the United States in the National Truck Driving Championships held in August in Houston TX. The annual event is sponsored by ATA.
Also claiming victory was the Volvo VN that was driven to victory in five of the seven truck classes. Competitors chose which brand of truck they drive in the competition
The driver contestants were the state champions in eight truck types from all 50 states. Collectively, they have driven 498,368,294 accident-free miles, according to ATA.
In their respective classes, drivers tested their expertise in the driving skills they use daily. The competition course inside Houston’s George R Brown Convention Center challenged their knowledge of safety, equipment and the industry. The skills course tested drivers’ ability to judge distances, maneuver tight spaces, reverse, park, and position their vehicle exactly over scales, before barriers or around curves.
Shirar also won the individual straight truck driving competition. Joining Shirar as champions in their respective classes:
- Tank Truck: John A Smith Jr - FedEx Ground (Mooreville MS)
- Three-Axle: Victor K Wheeler – Roadway (Bountiful UT)
- Four-Axle: Ryan R Kelley - FedEx Freight (Nora Springs IA)
- Five-Axle: Buner H Evans - USF Holland (Bremen GA)
- Five-Axle Sleeper: Karl R Bohrer - Wal-Mart Transportation (Katy TX)
- Twins: Chris A Mahony - FedEx Freight (Kearns UT)
- Flatbed: Ben S Moore Jr - Wal-Mart Transportation (Americus GA)
Robert Romando, a three-axle driver for FedEx National LTL from Surprise AZ, was named 2008 Rookie of the Year. Romando has been a professional truck driver for 18 years and has over 700,000 miles of accident free driving.
The Georgia state truck driving championship team won honors as the highest scoring state team, followed by Indiana and West Virginia.
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