PICKERING, Ont. — This past Sunday was a fun day for certain Ready Mixed Concrete Association of Ontario (RMCAO) members.
On Sunday August 17, twenty-four members of the RMCAO competed in the Concrete Truck Rodeo at Miller Waste Systems in Pickering, Ont.
A driver goes through the diminishing clearance course.
The day began early (registration opened at 7:30 a.m.) but luckily the weather stayed sunny for the heaps of family and friends that came out to show their favourite driver their support.
The purpose of the rodeo is a no-brainer to John D. Hull, RMCAO president.
“We really want to recognize the drivers,” he said. “These guys are the ambassadors of the industry and you have to come out here to see what kind of talent they have to do these courses. It’s a great time and we always have people coming out with their families. It’s really nice to be able to recognize the drivers for once.”
The RMCAO rodeo is a classic – the first one dates back more than 40 years ago.
“The RMCAO used to have them years ago but for some reason they stopped,” Hull said. “But we brought it back and this is our third year.”
The rodeo is open to all active members across Ontario and Hull says it’s exciting when people from out of town come to compete.
“We have some drivers in from Kitchener, we’ve had drivers in from Ottawa and Cambridge and two here today from Sudbury which is good,” he said.
The competition consists of two parts: a pre-trip inspection and a driving course. The entire competition is scored out of a total of 500 possible points.
A driver does his pre-trip inspection.
The pre-trip inspection tests a driver on his or her ability to locate five planted defects on a truck. Each contestant is only allowed one loop around the vehicle and is given 10 minutes to complete their inspection.
The driving course part of the competition is composed of nine different stations to test drivers on their stopping, turning and weaving abilities. At each station a driver can earn a maximum of 50 points. Demerits are given out according to mistakes made on each obstacle.
Drivers went one after the other to complete the nine stations in one swift, continuous motion.
Much like the Truck Driving Championships across the country, the RMCAO Concrete Truck Rodeo contestants are not allowed to drive their own vehicle for the test, to level the playing field.
At the end the day, the driver with the most points is declared the winner and receives a great prize for his or her dedication to safety, skill and precision.
“There are cash prizes for the top five,” added Hull.
The first place winner takes home a cool $1,500. From there, the cash prizes are $750 for second place, $500 for third and $100 each for fourth and fifth.
The lucky winners of the 2014 RMCAO truck rodeo were as follows:
1st Bryan Houston – Miller Concrete
2nd Mike Reitzel – Hogg Fuel & Supply
3rd John Lefebvre – Miller Concrete
4th David Benevides – Innocon Inc
5th Roy Needham – Trivant Haulage Ltd.
Sonia Straface is the associate editor of Truck News and Truck West magazines. She graduated from Ryerson University's journalism program in 2013 and enjoys writing about health and wellness and HR issues surrounding the transportation industry. Follow her on Twitter: @SoniaStraface. All posts by Sonia Straface