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Manitoba driver scores hat-trick at annual awards ceremony

WINNIPEG, Man. -- Ken Wiebe of Ram Messenger Service drove home the big winner following the Drivers Awards Dinner ...

WINNIPEG, Man. — Ken Wiebe of Ram Messenger Service drove home the big winner following the Drivers Awards Dinner in Winnipeg on June 10.

The Drivers Awards Dinner is held annually in conjunction with the Manitoba Professional Truck Driving Championships, where Wiebe placed first in the eight-axle, Super B Train category. At the awards dinner, Wiebe followed up his first-place finish by taking home the three most prestigious awards for professional truck drivers in Manitoba: Manitoba Driver of the Year, J.O. Dutton Memorial Trophy and Grand Champion.

Manitoba’s 2006 Driver of the Year recipient is selected from among the twelve previous year’s Drivers of the Month. Wiebe was Driver of the Month for January 2005.

The J.O Dutton Memorial Award is presented for outstanding performance at the National Championships for the previous year.

The Grand Champion award is presented for outstanding performance at the 2006 Manitoba Championships.

The Manitoba Championships is a competition for professional truck drivers. The challenging day allows professional truck drivers to showcase their skills as they negotiate a track of obstacles simulating everyday driving conditions. They also must complete a written exam and a pre-trip vehicle safety inspection.

The daylong competition had 48 entrants from across Manitoba, competing in six events. Awards are also presented for best Team performance, best First-Time Entrant performance and highest score overall, as well as the Grand Champion.

The winning Team was from Reimer Express Lines, consisting of John Klassen, Peter Schlichter, Gary Good, Rob Trager, and Trevor Mulder.

The First Time Entrant Award went to Jim Tulipan of Bison Transport.

The Hal Bjornson Memorial Award for highest score went to John Klassen of Reimer Express Lines.

The winner in each of the 6 classes joins Team Manitoba to compete at the National Championships. This year the nationals are being held in Quebec City, September 8 and 9.

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