Driver makes history as first UPS grand champion at National Truck Driving Championships

Flawless performance takes home top prize at elite driving competition
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Record breaking: Gragg Wilson made history this summer after becoming the first UPS driver to earn the grand champion trophy at the American Trucking Association's 86th annual National Truck Driving Championships (NTDC). He earned the honor by outperforming the best-of-the-best from a field of 421 professional drivers.

“Gragg delivered a flawless performance to take home our industry’s top prize and earn the title of grand champion,” said Chris Spear, ATA President and CEO. “He has amassed a remarkable 2.5 million accident-free miles over his 37-year career.”

No stranger to safe driving competition, Gragg previously won the Nevada state championship 13 times in six different classes. He was also grand champion five times in Nevada and was the state’s 2019 driver of the year. For those who don't follow safe driving competitions ... those are impressive accomplishments.

Recruiting the best: Gragg joined UPS five years ago thanks to a conversation during a previous competition. “I wasn’t really thinking about leaving FedEx until a UPS guy asked me if I ever thought about what UPS offers drivers,” said Gragg. “I love what I do … my windshield is my office. And UPS had new opportunities for me.”

It wasn’t just industry-leading pay and benefits that attracted Gragg to UPS, he also found more opportunities behind the wheel than at his previous employer. He jokes that some of his former colleagues even call him the “O.D. – original defector,” since some of them have followed him to UPS.

“Gragg has been an invaluable asset to UPS for the past five years,” said Phil Cote, UPS operational division manager. “He has an unwavering commitment to safety, precision and professionalism. That shows up in his impeccable track record.”

Pro-tips from the champ:

  • Mind your following distance: Leave plenty of space between your vehicle and the one in front of you.
  • Take your time: You are the commander of your ship – don’t let anyone rush you.
  • Be patient with other drivers: You don’t know what other people are going through.

The winning team: Speaking of elite, the UPS Circle of Honor program recognizes employees who’ve driven for the company for 25 years or longer without an accident. Currently, we have over 10,000 Circle of Honor drivers on the roads today – with a combined 15 billion miles of safe driving.

With stats like that, it’s no secret that the UPS culture is all about driving home the importance of safety every day. That’s why we invest over $340 million dollars in employee safety each year, and why we offered our U.S. employees over 5 million hours of safety training last year alone.

Be like Gragg. Join our winning team.

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