DAF Driver Challenge: Meet The Judges Pt 2

18th April 2018

With just one month to go until the DAF Driver Challenge live event at Millbrook, with 20 finalists facing a variety of challenges to test their skills on and off road, we're now pleased to announce our next three judges for the challenge: Mark Bullock, Dave Cooper, and Peter Jackson.

Let's find out a bit more about our judges!

 

Mark Bullock

Tell us a bit about yourself, how did you become a truck driver and driver trainer?

My name is Mark Bullock I am 45 years old married to Charlotte and have twins Frankie and Lily who are 6 years old. I am the handover/driver trainer for Lancashire DAF, I have been doing this job for six years. I became a truck driver while working for a parcel firm, I started off in the warehouse when I reached 21 I decided to apply for my class 1 license and passed first time.

How long have you worked with DAF?

I have worked at Lancashire DAF for six years and trained up as the driver trainer for the Preston branch.

What are the main things you teach drivers about driving a modern truck?

I teach drivers how to use the features of the truck to get the best fuel economy out of the truck also to make the drivers job easier and their day more comfortable.

Why do you think it’s important for DAF to host a Driver Challenge?

I think it is important to host a driver challenge because everyone including myself has a bit of room for improvement and we may all learn something from each other.

Why is Millbrook Proving Grounds and ideal location for the DAF Driver Challenge?

Millbrook Proving Grounds is an ideal location to host this driver challenge as it is on a private road and you don’t have to worry about children playing or cyclist cycling and everyone else on the track has to do health and safety and be issued with a track license before driving on site.

What will you be looking for from entrants into the DAF Driver Challenge?

I will be looking for safe and fuel efficient driving, also drivers doing their daily checks of the vehicle before setting off.

What do you think it takes to be a DAF Driver Champion?

To be a DAF Champion Driver you have to be a very competent, skillful and safe driver.

 

Dave Cooper

Tell us a bit about yourself, how did you become a truck driver and driver trainer?

My ambition long before leaving school or making career choices was to be a lorry driver, every opportunity I would go with my Dad who drove a farm lorry but often made trips from Bishops Stortford Hertfordshire to Newton Stewart South West Scotland moving animals. This was the start for me, I was fortunate enough to do work experience at school as I hated school and the feeling was mutual with the school, I worked one day a week at Albany’s in Ware a Warehousing & Distribution company part of the TDG group, working in the workshop and did this for 3 years learning many skills

I then became a driver at 20 on 7500kgs then did my class one in 3 days two days after my 21st birthday. I stayed as a driver for 16 years and then my career progressed as a driver trainer for Sainsbury’s, before moving onto a driving school doing license acquisition. From here I wrote a drivers handbook that sold thousands of copies and still does today under the RHA banner.

Did my transport managers CPC for International Road Haulage, and used it as a Transport Manager for several years before working as a consultant representing hauliers at Traffic Commissioner Public Inquiries and much more and then worked as Head of Driver Development for a distinctive family haulier. Currently work as a training manager for the RHA.

How long have you worked with DAF?

I have worked with DAF for 3 years

What are the main things you teach drivers about driving a modern truck?

Making use of the technology that is available to them

Why do you think it’s important for DAF to host a Driver Challenge?

As leading manufacturer it’s great to see DAF are active in giving drivers the recognition they deserve.

Why is Millbrook Proving Grounds and ideal location for the DAF Driver Challenge?

Millbrook holds some excellent challenges for drivers at all disciplines and certainly puts them through their paces.

What will you be looking for from entrants into the DAF Driver Challenge?

I will be looking for professionalism, efficiency, compliance and an outstanding level of skill in all challenges 

What do you think it takes to be a DAF Driver Champion?

Only excellence above all others will make a DAF Champion

 

Peter Jackson

Tell us a bit about yourself, how did you become a truck driver and driver trainer?

Cab happy since childhood I put myself through Livingston MOTEC back in 1971. Early driving experiences with Kinneil Transport at Broxburn then joined DAF Scotland in 1976. After 25 years with DAF I took redundancy and then built my own business in training on the DAF range.

How long have you worked with DAF?

After a period with the dealer, I joined DAF in Marlow and through a number of customer facing roles became Bus Military and Government Sales director in 1988 not long after the Leyland DAF merger.

What are the main things you teach drivers about driving a modern truck?

That modern technology baked into the truck can be their great friend not their enemy!

Why do you think it’s important for DAF to host a Driver Challenge?

Anything that raises the awareness of the importance of the truck driving role is a good thing, the role doesn’t get sufficient credibility from the public at large.

Why is Millbrook Proving Grounds and ideal location for the DAF Driver Challenge?

The variety of surfaces and tracks including off road make for the ideal test in a safe environment.

What will you be looking for from entrants into the DAF Driver Challenge?

Confidence with smoothness and above all mechanical empathy and all round awareness and anticipation – the key to a good drive.

What do you think it takes to be a DAF Driver Champion?

Complete understanding of the truck features and how to use them to the very best advantage. Recognition that we never stop learning.

 

Stay tuned to find out the next who the next three judges are or head to daf.co.uk/thechallenge to find out more about the challenge.


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Chas Peel

4 months ago

Having now read the CV's of all six judges I'm excited for, and convinced of, a SUPERB competition at this world class location.

In that I have a history with DAF Trucks Finance (UK) Ltd as Assistant Regional Manager in the North - defined as Birmingham to Aberdeen plus Northern Ireland - operating out of a Leeds office from '81 to '85 and am now, as I approach my 65th birthday, in the final stages of my Thame based training to become a Dedicated Driver Trainer, I most certainly have an affinity with the marque. I was also in sales for a DAF dealer in the early 90's & sold Volvo, MAN & Renault for the respective dealers.

In 22 years in Banking, Finance & Sales I delivered training courses for Barclays Bank some 40 years ago, and I've then earned my living as a full time C&E driver for 23 years, the last 13 of them self employed on a freelance/relief basis.

I'm happy & excited at the prospect of taking on this new role.