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2016 florida triple crown bus roadeoBy Nancy Stuparich
Training to achieve higher performance and "putting it all" on the line in competition is the mindset of a champion. This past weekend Lake County Public Transportation bus operator Wilson Lampkin did just that and competed in the 2016 Annual Florida Triple Crown Bus Roadeo in Ft. Myers.

The two-day event was sponsored by the Florida Public Transportation Association (FPTA), the Florida Rural Transit Assistance Program (RTAP), the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT), and the Florida Association of Coordinated Transit Systems (FACTS), and hosted by LeeTran. The event drew fixed route and paratransit bus operators and maintenance technicians from cities throughout Florida to engage in safety training and some challenging, but fun, competition with the vehicles they operate on a daily basis.

Lampkin works for Maruti Fleet & Management, which is under contract with Ride Right Transportation and Lake County Public Transportation to provide transit services throughout Lake County.

"'Do it Right, Do it Safe' is our philosophy," according to Nita Parikh, president and founder of Maruti Fleet Management, who was present at the roadeo to cheer on Lampkin and the rest of her transit operators.

You may wonder just what exactly is a bus roadeo. As a fixed route operator, Lampkin's performance at the event was judged by a written test of his knowledge of the rules of the road, his personal appearance and professional demeanor, his ability to spot defects and hazards prior to beginning a route, and his ability to maneuver a bus through a challenging obstacle course.

According to Lampkin, the course was not only an excellent opportunity to learn, but also to build fellowship with transit professionals throughout Florida. This was Lampkin's second year participating in a bus roadeo. Each year he has returned from the roadeo experience with a renewed spirit and enhanced skills to provide a safer journey for his Lake County passengers.

Lake County bus operator Wilson Lampkin
competes in 2016 Florida Triple Crown Bus Roadeo
2016 FL triple crown bus roadeo
A bus operator with his vehicle, participating in the 2016 Florida Triple Crown Bus Roadeo. The fun competition helps operators sharpen their skills. (Photo by Nancy Stuparich)


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