Bendix Commercial Vehicle Systems honors the Grand Champion winner of this year’s American Trucking Associations (ATA) National Truck Driving Championships (NTDC), held Aug. 20 to 24 in Salt Lake City, Utah. For a third straight year, Bendix is the sponsor of the Bendix National Truck Driving Championships Grand Champion Award, given to the five-day competition’s overall top driver.
Bendix is pleased to recognize the 2013 winner, Gary Harms, a Walmart Transportation professional truck driver based in Olathe, Kan. He also won the individual 5-Axle Sleeper driving competition. Gary has logged 30 years as a driver, with more than 1.7 million miles behind the wheel. His driving skills, and knowledge of transportation and truck safety information topped those of 422 other professional truck drivers. Gary began competing in his state truck driving championships in 2007, and this is his second trip to the NTDC. In 2011, he placed first in the 4-axle class.
The NTDC – an annual contest among professional truck drivers – features the winners from 50 state trucking associations’ truck driving championships who participate in nine truck types. Collectively, these champions have driven 605,654,659 accident-free miles.
Throughout the event, in their respective classes, drivers tested their expertise in the driving skills they use daily. The competition course inside the Salt Palace 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.
“Bendix congratulates Gary Harms for earning this year’s National Truck Driving Grand Champion award, and salutes the entire qualifying field of drivers who competed in the 2013 National Truck Driving Championships,” said Fred Andersky, Bendix director of government and industry affairs, and director of marketing – Charging. “Gary and all the participants deserve recognition for their tremendous driving achievements and commitment to highway safety. Bendix is proud to share their dedication. The National Truck Driving Championships illustrate the enormous impact that great drivers can have on improving highway safety for everyone.”
Bendix plans to continue sponsorship of the Grand Champion Award as part of its robust, ongoing commitment to promoting commercial vehicle and highway safety.