On 18 October 2017, the city of Toledo, Spain hosted the international finale of the Optifuel Challenge, an eco-driving competition organised by Renault Trucks. 29 drivers from 29 countries faced off in a theoretical exam and a practical test. Plamen Ivanov, a driver and manager of the Bulgarian company Sunny Co, won the 4th edition. Romanian driver Adrian Ţintea, from Ţintar Spedition came in 2nd, and Luxembourger Jochen Becker, representing Tri Kipper, came in 3rd.
The international finale of the Optifuel Challenge, a competition created and organised by Renault Trucks, brought together the 29 best eco-drivers from 29 countries in Toledo on 18 October 2017. The Bulgarian, Romanian, and Luxembourger drivers took first, second, and third place respectively.
The competition was split into two parts: the finalists answered a theoretical questionnaire that evaluated their eco-driving knowledge, for 10% of the final score. They then took the wheel of a Renault Trucks T480 Optifuel truck for an open-road driving test lasting around 40 minutes.
Plamen Ivanov, a driver and manager of the Bulgarian company Sunny Co, was declared the best eco-driver for 2017. He won a Renault Trucks T480 Optifuel truck, expanding his 23-vehicle fleet, which is exclusively made up of Renault Trucks vehicles: "I'm thrilled to have won a Renault Trucks T, since I think they are the best trucks! I've been a loyal customer for years, and I was even the first in Bulgaria to buy a Magnum!" says Plamen Ivanov. He took the competition very seriously, since he practiced every weekend, using the Optifuel Infomax to monitor and improve his performance. "I was able to keep my consumption low, all while maintaining my speed. I only used the brake three times on the whole route!" After receiving an eco-driving training from Renault Trucks Bulgaria, Plamen Ivanov now trains his company's drivers. The Bulgarian driver also won a 6,000-euro voucher for the store of his choice.
Adrian Ţintea, the Romanian driver representing the company Ţintar Spedition, came in second place. He won a 2,000-euro voucher for the store of his choice, and a 5,000-euro voucher for his company, valid in the entire Renault Trucks network. "The finale route was very challenging, hilly with a lot of roundabouts," says Adrian Ţintea. "I'm a little disappointed that I didn't win the truck, since I got to drive the T for a month after winning the final in Romania. It's a great truck that allowed me to save a tank of gas every 11, 000 kilometres." He promises he'll win the next edition.
Lastly, Jochen Becker, the Luxembourger driver from the company Tri Kipper, took third place. He won a 1,000-euro voucher for the store of his choice. Thanks to his performance, his company also won a Renault Trucks voucher worth 2,500 euros. Jochen Becker admits that he didn't practice a lot outside of his daily driving hours: "The hilly route was very similar to the roads in Luxembourg I drive on every day." His boss, Gunter Wilke, said he was very proud of his driver. He also expressed his appreciation for the Renault Trucks brand, emphasising the excellent value for money of the vehicles, their reliability, and the relationship of trust he has built with his dealership.
A special "Fun" prize was also awarded the Tunisian team for their good humour and enthusiasm throughout the competition.