American Trucking Associations
Ntdc 2019

Truck driving ‘rodeo’ set to kick off in Indy

Aug. 15, 2022
In its 85th year after a two-year hiatus, the National Truck Driving and Step Van Championships matches driving champions Aug. 16-19 from all 50 states in 'the Super Bowl of Safety' for professional truckers.

The National Truck Driving and Step Van Championships, set to kick off on Aug. 16 and run through Aug. 19 at the Indianapolis Convention Center, draw a devoted following every year of competitors, families from the driver community, volunteers, and trucking industry stakeholders who appreciate the difficult task of precisely guiding 35,000-lb. tractor-trailers on courses with different challenges—all under a rubber duck’s watchful eye.

Yeah, rubber ducks … that’s an NTDC thing. If you go, you’ll see. They are the event's unofficial mascot. The annual American Trucking Associations (ATA) competition, also known as the “Super Bowl of Safety” and in its 85th year after a two-year hiatus because of the COVID-19 pandemic, pits champions in various vehicle classes and seeking high scores in three areas: a written test based on this year’s Facts for Drivers rulebook, pre-trip inspections, and the most visibletests of maneuvering their trucks on challenging safety courses.

See also: Truckload driver wages up 18% over past two years

Drivers compete in several classes: three-axle, four-axle, five-axle, twins, sleeper, tanker, flatbed, straight truck, and step van. Drivers have to be accident-free for at least one year prior to the competition, but many of the competitors have millions of accident-free miles to their credit. The NTDC competitors are made up of the winners in eight classes of competition from 50 state trucking associations’ driving championships held throughout the spring and summer.

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 prize—Grand Champion.

The reigning Grand Champion from the last competition in 2019 is Scott Woodrome of FedEx Freight in Ohio. Woodrome is a back-to-back Grand Champion, having won in 2018 as well. This year’s event will feature more than 400 competitors, according to ATA.

Sponsors of the event are ACT 1, ABF Freight, UPS Inc. (No. 2 on the FleetOwner 500: Top For-Hire Fleets of 2022), FedEx Corp. (No. 1 on the for-hire list), Pitt Ohio (No. 52), Walmart (No. 20 on the FleetOwner 500: Top Private Fleets of 2022), Old Dominion (No. 13 on the for-hire list), TForce Freight, PrePass, XPO Logistics (No. 9 on the for-hire list), Yellow (No. 7 on the for-hire list) and Bendix.

About the Author

Scott Achelpohl | Managing Editor

I'm back to the trucking and transportation track of my career after some time away freelancing and working to cover the branches of the U.S. military, specifically the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps, and the U.S. Coast Guard. I'm a graduate of the University of Kansas and the William Allen White School of Journalism there with several years of experience inside and outside business-to-business journalism. I'm a wordsmith by nature, and I edit FleetOwner magazine and our website as well as report and write all kinds of news that affects trucking and transportation.

Sponsored Recommendations

Reducing CSA Violations & Increasing Safety With Advanced Trailer Telematics

Keep the roads safer with advanced trailer telematics. In this whitepaper, see how you can gain insights that lead to increased safety and reduced roadside incidents—keeping drivers...

80% Fewer Towable Accidents - 10 Key Strategies

After installing grille guards on all of their Class 8 trucks, a major Midwest fleet reported they had reduced their number of towable accidents by 80% post installation – including...

Proactive Fleet Safety: A Guide to Improved Efficiency and Profitability

Each year, carriers lose around 32.6 billion vehicle hours as a result of weather-related congestion. Discover how to shift from reactive to proactive, improve efficiency, and...

Tackling the Tech Shortage: Lessons in Recruiting Talent and Reducing Turnover

Discover innovative strategies for recruiting and retaining tech talent in the trucking industry during this informative webinar, where experts will share insights on competitive...

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of FleetOwner, create an account today!