YRC Freight is proud to announce that Neil Nogues, professional driver from New Hampshire, received the Neill Darmstadter Professional Excellence Award at the 2018 National Truck Driving Championships (NTDC), held Aug. 15-18 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center in Columbus, Ohio.
Nogues was named the 2018 New Hampshire (NH) State Straight Truck Champion and 2018 NH State Grand Champion. A resident of Franklin, NH, he has been behind the wheel for 39-years and has spent the past 33-years driving for YRC Freight. This year’s triumph marks a record-setting 19th first-place win at the NH State Truck Driving Championships (TDC). Nogues has participated in Straight Truck, 4-Axle, 3-Axle, and Twins divisions at TDCs for the past 21-years. This is also his 19th trip to NTDC. He has driven over three-million miles during his professional driving career.
He was named NH State Grand Champion in 2002 (Straight Truck), 2003 (Straight Truck), 2017 (4-Axle) and 2018 (Straight Truck). Nogues was awarded NH State TDC Best Pre-Trip in 2000, 2003, 2007 and 2012; Highest Written Test Score in 2002 and 2010. He was selected as the 2001 and 2003 NH Professional Drivers Association Driver of the Year
He currently operates as a city driver out of the Manchester, NH YRC Freight service center. It is Nogues’ safety priority that motivates him. He shares: “I wanted to be a truck driver since I was ten years old. I’m doing what I love. There are many drivers I’d like to thank for passing on their safety knowledge and tips–namely YRC Freight driver Michael “Mickey” Rafeal. Competing at NTDC is certainly a great honor but being recognized with the Neill Darmstadter Professional Excellence award is an incredible experience.”
In addition, Nogues has been a regular in the Straight Truck and 4-Axle divisions at the St. Jude’s Charity Challenge Truck Driving Competitions since 1999. He earned the St. Jude Team Trophy in 2006 and 2008 and has scored in the “top three” every time he participated. He and his wife, Patrice, have a daughter and three grandchildren.
“It is a great honor for one of our drivers to win the Neill Darmstadter Professional Excellence Award,” said T.J. O’Connor, president of YRC Freight. “In fact, it is an even greater honor,” stated O’Connor, “for Neil to be the seventh driver from a YRC Worldwide company to have received this professional excellence award since its beginning. A driver must have at least seven years of State and National Truck Driving Championship experience (competing and volunteering) just to be eligible for the Neill Darmstadter Professional Excellence Award. Contestants are judged on their driving record, skill, knowledge, attitude and professionalism. This award is presented to the contestant who most exemplifies all of the best attributes of a professional truck driver. Neil has earned this prestigious award by representing YRC Freight and the American trucking industry with professionalism, skill and safety.”
O’Connor continued, “I would also like to thank the YRC Worldwide family of drivers who competed at their local, state or national level. These drivers are all safety champions. To simply qualify for these safety competitions, drivers must drive the entire year without an accident. A great many of our drivers have driven without an accident the entire time they’ve been part of our team. These drivers are all winners in the real competition–operating safely and professionally on North America’s highways.”