718th Transportation Battalion
The 718th Transportation Battalion Rodeo is held annually at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in southwestern Ohio, where all the transportation units within the battalion compete for the Coleman F. Davis award. Coleman F. Davis was an Army Sgt. 1st Class, the maintenance non-commissioned officer in the unit back in the 1970s and 80s. It was Davis who was instrumental in beginning the rodeo event for all the truck units within the battalion. Now it's an annual event with the 718th. The rodeo brings out maximum participation for unit members. The rodeo was held, Sept. 8-10, 2001. The 705th Transportation Company, Dayton, Ohio, won the tractor trailer competition. The 1001st Field Services Company, from Chillicothe and Columbus, Ohio, won the five-ton, 2 1/2 ton and High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle events.
Drivers from three transportation companies: the 705th and 656th, Springfield, Ohio, and the 454th, Columbus, Ohio participated. Also participating in the rodeo were two movement control teams: the 869th and 957th from Columbus, Ohio; and a field services support unit, the 1001st.
The tasks required drivers to maneuver through a myriad of obstacle courses. There were six driving events for the tractor-trailer drivers and five for the HMMWV teams. The primary courses in the rodeo were the offset alley; diminishing clearance, straight line backing, controlled braking, and the serpentine course. The offset alley course is a course that tests the ability of the driver to maneuver his system through a series of barricades. The barricades represent obstacles that a driver may encounter during everyday driving, such as other vehicles and right and left-hand turns. The diminishing clearance event challenges the driver to keep his vehicle between a series of pylons that decrease in width from 10 feet, seven inches to eight feet, six inches. This course simulated what may be encountered with driving lane restrictions in construction zones.
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