30 November 2017

Best Freight Transport Driver Announced as Logistics Operators Compete for Title  

Derby Road Haulage Operator Wins Prestigious Award

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Shipping News Feature UK – Thomas Kent has been named as the UK's top driver in logistics, after a nationwide competition organised by the Freight Transport Association (FTA). Kent, who works for Samworth Brothers Supply Chain in Derby, scooped the overall FTA Driver of the Year 2017 title, to add to his FTA 44 tonne Driver of the Year accolade, which the road haulage man won in September. June Powell, FTA's Director of Operations, said:

“Reaching the top of your profession is something that many of us strive for, but few attain. From Olympic medallists to Oscar-winning actors, successful business leaders and entrepreneurs, peak performers inspire others to emulate them, and this is what Thomas does. Throughout this year’s Driver of the Year competition we have been overwhelmed by the quality and professionalism of the UK’s logistics drivers, but Thomas has rightfully gained the top prize. His skill, knowledge and understanding of the rigours of today’s logistics industry were a credit to him and his employer, and we are delighted to acknowledge his efforts with today’s award. He really is the crème de la crème!”

Kent received the overall FTA Driver of the Year award after registering the highest marks of the three category winners (44 tonne, 18 tonne and Van Excellence driver), which were all judged against the same criteria. And, as Ms Powell continues, his pride in his role is a great testament to the support of his employer Samworth Brothers, as well as the variety and knowledge which it requires on a daily basis.

“Reaching the top as a logistics driver is challenging and time consuming, but the sense of purpose and satisfaction from a job done well is unparalleled. What other job supports every single sector of our economy, from manufacturing and retailing to construction and leisure? Without drivers like Thomas, Britain would find it hard to trade both at home and abroad, they are the unsung heroes of the UK’s economy, and should be celebrated.”

More than 100 drivers entered the three categories of the FTA’s Driver of the Year competition, which were sponsored by Mercedes-Benz Vans (Van Excellence), Bridgestone Tyres (18 tonnes) and Mercedes- Benz Trucks (44 tonnes). Contestants were assessed against a strict set of criteria which tested understanding of risk assessment, legislation and pre-use defect checks, as well as driving style, manoeuvring and economical driving. After the prize presentation, which took place at Coventry’s Ricoh Arena, Thomas Kent commented:

“Pinch me, I’m the FTA’s Driver of the Year 2017, I can’t quite believe it. The competition was incredibly tough, but hugely rewarding, and really tested every part of my working life. To be recognised in this way is a real bonus and a testament to the support and training I have received from my employers Samworth Brothers. Thank you to them, and to my family, for all their help and encouragement through this process, I am literally on top of the world!”

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