Pilot Flying J announces Road Warrior 2020 winners

August 26, 2020

Land Line Staff


Eric Britton, 2020 Road Warrior
Eric Britton, a veteran and professional truck driver for First Fleet, is awarded the $10,000 grand prize in Pilot Flying J’s annual Road Warrior program at a surprise presentation on August 21, 2020.

A Tennessee trucker and U.S. military veteran is the winner of Pilot Flying J’s seventh annual Road Warrior contest.

After reviewing more than 3,000 entries, Pilot Flying J selected Eric Britton of Clarksville, Tenn., as the $10,000 grand prize winner. The announcement comes as part of the fuel stop chain’s kickoff of Driver Appreciation Month in September.

To honor Britton, the company partnered with his employer, First Fleet, and his family to surprise him with the news of his win in a congratulatory video.

“You are picked because of your professionalism, your dedication to your profession, your enthusiasm, and in general you embody what a professional truck driver should be,” Pilot founder and chairman Jim Haslam said in the video tribute to Britton.

Nominated by his wife Shemeka, Britton was recognized for his service to the country as a veteran and a professional driver. He served for 15 years in the U.S. Army as a paratrooper and then a driver, delivering supplies to military units. After retiring from the army, Britton became a professional driver for First Fleet and was recently awarded for 19 years and 2 million miles of safe driving.

“To be named the 2020 Road Warrior means so much, and I’m very thankful,” Britton said. “My advice to other drivers is to slow down, take your time, be aware of what’s around you, and always display professionalism. It’s truly an honor to represent my company and be recognized in this way. Thank you for believing in me.”

Zdenko Zalac, an OOIDA senior member from Clinton, Ohio, and Mona Beedle of Auburndale, Fla., have been named the second- and third-place Road Warrior winners, respectively.

Zalac, an owner-operator and driver for over 20 years with over 3 million crash-free miles, received $5,000 for second place, while Beedle, a driver of over 30 years for RayLee Transport who’s a strong advocate for women drivers across the country, received $2,500. Nominators of the grand, second and third place winners also received a $500 prize.

New this year, Pilot Flying J randomly selected 400 professional drivers from Road Warrior contest entries and rewarded them each with 5,000 myRewards loyalty points, a $50 in-store value, for their dedication throughout the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Truck driver Timothy Chelette of Murfreesboro, Tenn., won the grand prize in last year’s Road Warrior program.