Today marks the kickoff of the final round of the fifth annual Young European Truck Driver (YETD) competition, being held this year in Södertälje, Sweden.
This event – sponsored by Swedish truck maker Scania – pits 24 finalists against one another over two days in a variety of fuel economy, safety and maneuvering trials.
The finalists – culled from an initial contestant pool of 17,000 drivers held over several months of regional and national-level driver-skill competitions – are going some pretty big prizes, too, with the ultimate winner going home with a brand new Scania R-series truck, valued at 100,000 Euros, which equates to a little over 127,000 in U.S. dollars.
[Here’s a glimpse of some of the action that took place in the regional and national rounds of the YETD competition.]
Following the qualification round today, 18 of the original 24 drivers will remain to head into the final round, made up of three challenges peged with some pretty cool names: “Combo,” “Knock the King” and “Super Z.”
Scania said that its YETD contest rewards accuracy and good judgment above speed, with the driver who makes the fewest mistakes coming out on top.
However, being efficient is important, the OEM stressed, so all the drivers work against the clock as well – that’s just is part of a driver’s daily reality, the company explained.
At the end of the day, Scania wants its annual YETD competition to highlight the importance of the truck driving profession, the skills required to get the job done safely and efficiently, while enhancing road safety awareness and proficient eco-driving among drivers as well.
Pretty good goals, if you ask me.