N.Y. technician wins second TMC SuperTech grand championship

September 16, 2021

Tom Berg

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Christopher Tate, a truck and reefer technician from New York state, won his second grand championship in the TMC SuperTech competition held this week in Cleveland, Ohio.

This was Tate’s 16th competition. He previously won the grand prize in 2009, plus several skills station events in subsequent events.

The contest hosts state-level winners from around the U.S. in mechanical and electrical skills testing. Tate bested 33 other technicians in this year’s event, sponsored by the Technology & Maintenanace Council of the American Trucking Associations. Testing and announcement of winners happened during TMC’s fall meeting this week.

Tate said he began his mechanical career in 1997 at Mohawk Truck Inc., a Thermo King dealer in West Seneca, N.Y., and learned truck-repair skills through training provided by his employer. He attended Nashville (Tenn.) Auto Diesel College following graduation from high school in his hometown of Jamestown, N.Y.

“When I was a kid, I liked to take things apart and put them back together, and I went on from there,” he said.

Aside from the grand prize, he also won the suspension and tools and lubes individual testing this week. The grand prize comes with several thousand dollars worth of tools, supplies, diagnostic software and hardware, all donated by sponsors, plus a trip to the Daytona 500 NASCAR race in Florida next year.

 

N.Y. technician wins second TMC SuperTech grand championship
Chris Tate, grand champion in the 2021 TMC SuperTech competition, is a technician at Mohawk Truck in West Seneca, N.Y. He also won in 2009. Tate dedicated this win to a mentor, Mike Hendries, who died last year. (Photo by Tom Berg)

This year’s SuperTech differed from those of previous years in that there were no actual trucks or trailers to debug, only component tests set up on tables. Also, several large fleets that sent multiple competitors in the past – FedEx, Ryder and UPS – did not send them due to caution over the continuing coronavirus epidemic.

One large organization, TravelCenters of America, did send a sizable group of technicians to SuperTech. Two placed second and third in the competition and others won various individual skills categories.

One of the prize sponsors, Dickinson Fleet Services, sent a technician who successfully competed in Cleveland.

Aside from Tate, here are the SuperTech competitors and their placement in the 2021 competition:

  • Joseph C. Anderson Jr., TravelCenters of America
  • Michael Kerfoot, TravelCenters of America
  • Michael Krause, Clarke Power Services, Inc.
  • José J. Feliciano, Dickinson Fleet Services
  • Aaron K. Burdick, Clarke Power Services Inc.
  • Scott Davidson, TravelCenters of America
  • Lucas Coyle, TravelCenters of America
  • Jeremy Piepmeier, Dickinson Fleet Services
  • John Justin Kidd Sr., TravelCenters of America
  • Nathan Louis Olson, NationaLease
  • Brian Peters, NationaLease
  • Patrick Allen, TravelCenters of America
  • John Norwood, NationaLease
  • Morgan Barnes, MHC Truck Leasing
  • Garrett Bankston, Clarke Power Services Inc.
  • Joseph R. Catlin, Mohawk Truck Inc.
  • Jeff Brinkman, Dickinson Fleet Services
  • Azahel Chebon Palomino, Love’s Travel Stops
  • Christopher Gerrald, TravelCenters of America
  • Joshua Lawhorn, Dickinson Fleet Services
  • James Robinson, Iron Buffalo Holdings, dba JECO
  • Alekrei Naranovich, Hogan Truck Leasing Inc.
  • Lucas Henson, Love’s Travel Stops
  • Christopher Herndon, Love’s Travel Stops
  • Curtis Hart, Transervice Logistics Inc.
  • Carroll Tipton, Sunoco LP
  • Anthony Black, Love’s Travel Stops
  • Zachary Pagett, Love’s Travel Stops
  • Caleb Walcott, Hogan Truck Leasing Inc.
  • Adam Mendoza, Transervice Logistics Inc.
  • Donovan Peshlakai, Love’s Travel Stops
  • Christopher Thomas, Dickinson Fleet Services
  • Brandon Monroe, Dickinson Fleet Services LL
TravelCenters of America

Tom Berg worked his way through college by driving trucks. Since 1978, he’s been writing about trucks and trucking. He holds a Class A commercial driver’s license and drives trucks as part of story research. While semi-retired, Berg still writes about semis as a contributing editor at Land Line.