Drivers Raise Funds to Help Ailing NTDC Competitor Singelais
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With the start of the National Truck Driving Championships qualifiers a couple of months away, elite commercial truck drivers from New England are calling for colleagues’ support for one of their own.
Brian Singelais, 2015’s national champion in the 5-axle tanker division while competing for A. Duie Pyle at the industry’s “Super Bowl of Safety,” has a failing heart and needs a transplant. His family launched a GoFundMe campaign titled, “National Champion Brian Singelais needs a heart!”
The Massachusetts precision truck driving community, led by two-time national grand champion Roland Bolduc of FedEx Express, is raising awareness about Singelais’ health crisis. For almost two decades, Bolduc and Singelais have trained and competed alongside each other in the Bay State and at the National Truck Driving Championships and National Step Van Driving Championships.
“I’ve known Brian for almost 20 years. He’s a big emotional teddy bear that has a huge heart. He’s donated and assisted at several charity events, and now it’s our chance to give back,” Bolduc told Transport Topics on Jan. 28. “Brian and his family need our help.”
Richard Sweeney of XPO Logistics, a former Massachusetts grand champion with several appearances at NTDC, also has collaborated closely with Singelais over the years.
2024 National Truck Driving Championships
Who: Winners from nine categories at the state level who have advanced to the national competition, where a Grand Champion will be crowned
What: Contestants are judged on a written exam, pre-trip inspection and driving skills
When: Aug. 21-24
“Brian has been a friend since I first met him in 2005 when I beat him out for grand champion. He is always there to help and make you a better person first, and a better competitor. He is always there for you and always willing to help out whether it’s being in charge of recruiting judges for the charity challenge or building new barricades for the driver’s trailer,” Sweeney recently told TT.
In 2018, Singelais took top honors at Massachusetts’ truck driving championships. The 53-year-old Webster, Mass.-based third-generation trucker with more than three decades of experience equated the NTDC qualifying experience to training for an Olympic event.
Reflecting on the opportunity to display his precision-driving skills at the national level in 2018, Singelais, driving with Frito-Lay at the time, told TT: “The level of quality people, friendly people at the nationals is just mind-blowing. And, the first time I went to nationals I was blown away. And when I got back to my job, and guys were asking, ‘How was it?’ I was like, ‘I wish every one of you drivers here could experience nationals. ’Cause it’s an experience like you’ve never experienced before.’
“You’re treated with the utmost respect by everybody. You are the drivers of America that delivers America’s goods, ’cause if it wasn’t for drivers of America, this country would not be able to sustain itself; would not be able to survive.”
Facebook post with photo from Singelais' wedding. With his wife, Sarah.
Background on Singelais’ GoFundMe account explained: “Brian and his family need us now, more than ever: medical expenses, gas expenses, the cost of a hotel in Boston so that family can remain close, and countless other expenses have started to take their toll.
“In this economy where two-income families are struggling, Brian’s family has become reliant on nearly one income and their savings. Instead of using gift money received at their wedding for a vacation or any new purchase, they are having to use it just to stay in the positive.”
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