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Matthew Pickering of Samworth Brothers Supply Chain was named the Freight Transport Association’s Truck Driver of the Year 44 tonne 2016, beating 19 other finalists to lift the trophy.
The hard-fought contest, held at Mercedes-Benz, Wentworth Park, Barnsley, examined contestants’ driving skills (fuel economy and driver behaviour), manoeuvring ability, risk awareness, legislative knowledge and their ability to identify pre-use defects of the vehicle. Drivers were scored on each task and ranked based on their scores.
Matthew received his trophy from Sam Whittaker, Director of Customer Service and Operations from Mercedes-Benz Trucks. He also picked up the prizes for the pre-use defect check and economical driving tasks.
FTA’s Julie Maddocks told contestants: “We know from talking to our members - and you the drivers - how the vital role you play in delivering the goods is all too often overlooked, so this competition has been created to celebrate the skills and abilities of professional drivers across the freight and logistics sector and highlight the fantastic work you do on a day-to-day basis.”
Logistics operators including Speedy Services, Central England Co-Operative, Bookers, Ceva Logistics, Matalan, XPO Logistics and United Biscuits were among those represented at the competition.
The following day, David West of Total Foodservice Solutions won the 18 tonne Driver of the Year competition with Stephen Bainbridge of Hargreaves Logistics finishing 2nd and Michael Lomax of Booker coming in 3rd.
In addition to the 44 and 18 tonne events, Wentworth Park also hosted the Van Excellence Driver of the Year competition.
The overall winner of the three contests and the FTA's Driver of the Year 2016 will be revealed at the Freight in the City Expo at Alexandra Palace on 2 November 2016.
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INDIVIDUAL CATEGORY WINNERS.