Ten drivers representing FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) operating companies placed among the top-three finishers in their respective truck classes at the 2011 National Truck Driving Championships (NTDC) in Orlando, Fla., Aug. 9-13.
James Sheehan , owner of Sheehan Trucking Inc. domiciled at the FedEx Ground station in Nashville, Tenn., captured the National Champion title in the Step Van class in just his first year of competing at the event. A professional driver for 12 years, he has accumulated more than 400,000 safe-driving miles during his career.
Nine other drivers representing FedEx also earned honors:
• Tim Cole , a driver for FedEx Ground contractor Freight on the Go Inc. based in Milwaukee, Wis., and Bob Ledoux , a driver for FedEx Express in Raynham, Mass., finished second and third, respectively, in the Step Van class. Cole has only been driving professionally for two years, while Ledoux has driven more than 300,000 accident-free miles during his 21-year career.
• Sean Saxon , the 2010 Step Van National Champion, placed second this year in the Straight Truck class. The owner of Berly Q Inc. domiciled at the FedEx Ground station in Tempe, Ariz., Saxon is a three-time Arizona state champion who has a near-spotless driving record.
• Pat Rudesill , a three-time Louisiana state champion, took second place in the 5-Axle Sleeper class. The owner of TLC Express Trucking Inc. based at the FedEx Ground station in New Orleans, Rudesill has driven more than 1.8 million miles during his 30-year career without ever having an accident.
• Tommy Winston earned his third top-three finish in the Tank Truck class at the NTDC since 2005 " finishing second this year. A Greenville, S.C.-based driver for FedEx Freight, Tommy has been driving professionally for 31 years and has accumulated more than 2 million safe-driving miles.
• Gary Martin , a 30-year professional driver, placed third in the Twins class for the second time in five years. The owner of Gary Martin Trucking, Inc. domiciled at the FedEx Ground station in Sacramento,Calif., he has racked up more than 3.4 million accident-free miles during his career.
• Oklahoma City-based FedEx Freight driver Russell Beachler finished third in the 5-Axle class in his first year of competing at the NTDC. He has posted more than 600,000 safe-driving miles during his 12 years on the road.
• Tommy Boyanton , a driver for FedEx Freight based in Jackson, Miss., finished third in the 3-Axle class. A professional driver for 28 years, Tommy has surpassed the 2 million-mile accident-free milestone.
• Larry Kendall , a FedEx Express driver in Tulsa, Okla., took third place in the 4-Axle class on his first attempt. He has been aprofessional driver for three decades and has accumulated nearly 500,000 accident-free miles.
"The achievements of all the FedEx competitors exemplify the Corporation's commitment to safety, a priority shared by our entire driving force each and every day," said Frederick W. Smith, chairman, president and chief executive officer, FedEx Corp.
The American Trucking Associations (ATA) sponsors the annual National Truck Driving Championships, known as the "Super Bowl of Safety," to recognize industry leadership in safety and to promote professionalism among truck drivers. One hundred and fifteen professional drivers from 45 states representing FedEx Express, FedEx Freight, FedEx Ground and FedEx Custom Critical qualified to compete at the national event by winning their respective state's competition and driving accident-free for at least one year. Each driver was required to demonstrate his or her driving skills and knowledge of the industry through a series of tests, including a written exam, vehicle pre-trip inspection and a difficult driving-skills challenge.