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FedEx Newsroom

Nine FedEx Drivers Earn Honors at the Illinois Truck Driving Championship

June 18, 2013

ST. CHARLES, Ill. – June 18, 2013 – Nine drivers representing FedEx Corporation (NYSE: FDX) operating companies placed among the top finishers at the 2013 Illinois State Truck Driving Championship in St. Charles on June 14-15.

  • Joe Carson, a driver for FedEx Freight based in Effingham, captured his third straight state title with a win in the Flatbed class. He also took home the Grand Champion title for achieving the highest score among the winners of all classes.
  • Ivan Nikolic, owner of IN Trucking, Inc. based at the FedEx Ground hub in Chicago, won the 5-Axle class.
  • FedEx Freight driver David Nunn (Bolingbrook) earned his second state title in the 3-Axle class.
  • Steve VerCande, a driver for Akman’s Express, Inc. based at the FedEx Ground station in Carol Stream, won the Step Van class and also earned the Rookie of the Year award.
  • Ritch Fundell, a driver for FedEx Freight based in Peru, attained his first state title with a win in the 4-Axle class.
  • David Leong, a driver for CJC Distributors, Ltd. based at the FedEx Ground station in Carol Stream, posted a second-place finish in the Step Van class.
  • FedEx Freight driver Jonathan Hitt (Rock Island) finished second in the Straight Truck class.
  • Tim Banasiak (FedEx Freight, Peru) and Scott Hepner (FedEx Express, Chicago) posted third-place finishes in the Twins and Tank classes, respectively.

Additionally, FedEx Freight won the Team Trophy.

Carson, Nikolic, Nunn, VerCande and Fundell will go on to compete at the American Trucking Associations’ 2013 National Truck Driving Championships (NTDC), known as the “Super Bowl of Safety,” August 20-24 in Salt Lake City. In addition, each state winner will be recognized by FedEx as part of its safe driving initiative, The Chairman’s Challenge.   

“Our company is represented by professional drivers who not only strive daily to ensure shipments are delivered on time, but also that they remain safe on the road. It’s a fundamental priority in our company,” said Frederick W. Smith, chairman, president and CEO, FedEx Corp. “The performance of these participants at the Illinois state championship demonstrates the dedication to safety of our entire team.”

The Illinois State Truck Driving Championship is an opportunity for professional truck drivers to demonstrate their driving skills and safety expertise. The event includes a difficult driving-skills challenge, pre-trip inspection and written examination covering vehicle operation and knowledge of federal safety regulations.

In 2012, 137 driving professionals from 46 states representing FedEx Freight, FedEx Ground, FedEx Express and FedEx Custom Critical qualified to compete at the National Truck Driving Championships by winning their respective state's competition and driving accident-free for at least one year. One FedEx competitor captured the National Grand Champion title. In addition, FedEx drivers captured National Champion titles in the Flatbed, 3-Axle and Step Van classes. Eight other FedEx drivers earned top-three finishes in their respective vehicle classes.

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