READING, Pa., September 7, 2006 - A pair of Penske Logistics truck drivers tested their mettle among the best the nation has to offer at the 2006 National Truck Driving Championships in New Orleans last month.
Mark Foster of Madera, Calif. placed 27th in the four-axle tractor with trailer class (two-axle tractor and two-axle semi-trailer). Bill Grove of Clear Spring, Md. finished 39th in the straight truck class. They earned berths to the national competition after winning state titles; Foster in California and Grove in Pennsylvania.
The American Trucking Association sponsored the 69th annual event, known as the "Super Bowl of Safety." A total of 382 drivers competed.
Foster, 42, has been with Penske since 1999, and serves as a Smith System instructor to company drivers. He has driven trucks for 10 years. This was his fourth appearance at nationals, the third time as a Penske employee.
This year's state title was the fourth of his career, and his fifth appearance in the California competition. An avid outdoorsman, Foster enjoys boating, fishing and skiing with his family.
"It's always new and exciting," said Foster of competing at the national level. "It is nerve-wracking, but I really enjoy it. Getting to know everyone is a good experience, and l learn so much about the trucking industry."
Grove, 46, earned entry to the national event after capturing his first Pennsylvania state title this year. He has worked for Penske for three and-a-half years, and has been a truck driver for 18 years. This was his first appearance nationally, and second at the state level. Grove enjoys hunting and camping with his family.
"I felt proud that I made it there," Grove explained of his time in New Orleans. "It was a really good experience and I learned a lot from it.
"I try to be a good driver every day," he said. "You always want to do the best you can. It is important to always be alert, know your routes and get enough rest."
The driver's skill levels were put to the test in several categories, which included: navigating challenging curves on an obstacle course, safety knowledge, approximating distances, while reversing and parking their rigs in a variety of scenarios.
"We are delighted with the performances this year of Mark and Bill at both the state and national level," said Terry Miller, Penske Logistics Executive Vice President Operations. "They are skilled drivers, and they have represented us well among the best truck drivers in the country."
Penske Logistics is a wholly owned subsidiary of Penske Truck Leasing. With operations in North America, South America, Europe and Asia, Penske Logistics provides supply chain management and logistics services to major industrial and consumer companies throughout the world. Penske Logistics delivers value through design, planning and execution in transportation, warehousing, international forwarding and carrier management. Visit www.PenskeLogistics.com to learn more about the company and its services.