The American Trucking Associations announced that James “Gragg” Wilson of Nevada, a professional driver for United Parcel Service, was named the Bendix Grand Champion of the 2023 National Truck Driving Championships. The competition took place Aug. 16-19 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center.
This competition has a long history – dating back to 1937 when it was known as the National Truck Rodeo. The NTDC competitors are made up of the winners in eight classes of competition from 50 State Trucking Associations’ Truck Driving Championships. During the TDC and NTDC competition, each driver has a chance to demonstrate his or her driving and inspection skills, knowledge and professionalism through a series of tests. The drivers undergo a written examination, pre-trip inspection test and finally, the most visible - the skills test. These annual competitions inspire tens of thousands of drivers to operate accident-free for the right to compete.
The Championships are a great incentive for professional truck drivers to operate safely, because they must be accident-free for at least one year prior to the competition. Many of the competitors have millions of accident-free driving miles to their credit.
When asked, professional drivers will tell you that they are drawn to the Championships by the spirit of competition and by the prestige of being named the best of the best. It is described by drivers as being like the Olympics, where they come to win but revel in the camaraderie and excitement. In addition to First, Second and Third Place titles, drivers vie for the Professional Excellence Award, the Vehicle Condition Award, the Rookie of the Year Award and the ultimate designation – The Grand Champion award.
August 16-19, 2023 | Columbus, OH