Congratulations to the winners of the RideKC Roadeo. The Roadeo is the annual skills competition for bus operators and mechanics. Similar competitions are held at transit agencies throughout North America, and local winners will compete at the International Bus Roadeo Competition, sponsored by the American Public Transportation Association in Reno, Nev., next May.
It was a tough field of competitors, but in the end, some familiar faces made it to the winners’ circle.
KCATA bus operator Ron Brown won the driving competition. This will be his third consecutive year competing on behalf of the KCATA. Mechanics Tom Seymour, Jeff Clark and Ralph Salmon came out tops in the maintenance contest. All are past winners who have been part of successful International Bus Roadeo teams.
Last year, the KCATA team placed second overall, with Dallas Area Rapid Transit winning the top prize. Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority of Washington, DC won third place overall achievement honors.
The Bus Operator Competition includes events such as judgment stops, turning, clearing obstacles and pre-trip inspection. The Mechanic Competition requires skills in the identification of defects in engine, transmission, brake and HVAC modules.
Bus operators compete with the Kansas City skyline in the background.
The Bus Roadeo is a family affair, with relatives of all ages coming out to cheer on their favorite bus driver. This guy is going to need a few more years before he can reach the pedals.
These judges measured how close a bus got to the curb and the bus stop. Contestants can win or lose points by mere inches.
The First Transit operators who drive Johnson County routes also competed against one another.
As a driver reverses, a cone tips out of place. This will cost points in the final scoring.
KCATA's top bus operators in the 2016 Bus Roadeo.