One of Pat England’s first trips riding shotgun in a Kenworth K100 cabover driven by her husband, Jeff England, wasn’t an entirely pleasant experience primarily due to her morning sickness.
She was six weeks pregnant carrying the couple’s first child during that 1969 trip. The cabover was equipped with a day cab and offered little in the way of comfort for an expectant mother sitting in the passenger seat. Fast-forward 44 years later, and her recent nine-day trip to Florida aboard one of Pride Transport’s new Kenworth T680s was an entirely different experience. It was one she would love to try again even with her husband—who’s also chief executive officer of the company—behind the wheel, Pat said.
“The Kenworth T680 was so comfortable with plenty of room in the sleeper to lay down and relax and plenty of light (from the interior LED lighting system) to read books while Jeff drove,” she said. “The rotating table really came in handy for preparing sandwiches and snacks for Jeff, and I liked the fact that I could stand up in the (full-height 76-inch) sleeper and hand him a can of pop or a snack while he was driving.”
Jeff and Pat traveled together more than 5,600 miles on the T680’s maiden trip from the company’s headquarters in Salt Lake City UT to Jacksonville FL and back. The couple believe the trip reaffirmed their close relationship, one in which they recently celebrated 45 years of being together.
The Englands delivered furniture in a 53-foot trailer for Jeff’s nephew, who was moving his family from Salt Lake City to Jacksonville, where he would serve as a fuel manager for Pride Transport. They hauled a light load of Heavenly Soft toilet tissue back from Florida to Utah. Pride Transport provides truckload and less-than-truckload hauling services moving commodities such as produce, frozen foods, pharmaceuticals and candy across the United States.
“It was an opportunity to test out the new Kenworth T680 and to help a family member get resettled in Florida at the same time,” Jeff said. The truck Jeff drove was one of five T680s Pride Transport bought from local dealer Kenworth Sales Co earlier in 2013, equipped with 15-liter Cummins ISX engines rated at 425 hp and 1,800 ft-lbs of torque, a 3.36 rear axle gear ratio, and 40,000-lb Kenworth AG400L air bag suspensions.
Jeff said he found the Kenworth T680 to be a great truck for his company’s drivers and owner-operators to drive. He said he thinks the Kenworth T680 is going to be a popular truck among company drivers not only because of the aura and prestige of driving a Kenworth, but also because of its comfort and driveability.
Jeff said the 76-inch sleeper provided a comfortable place to get rest, particularly when he had to stop for 36 hours at a Love’s Truck Stop between Amarillo and Dallas TX on the way back to Salt Lake City when he ran out of driving time after his seventh consecutive day of driving.
“It was good to be back behind the wheel of a Kenworth,” he said. Before Jeff started Pride Transport in 1979, he washed trucks, dispatched trucks and drivers, and drove trucks, mostly Kenworths, for 20 years for C R England, the company his grandfather Chester Rodney England founded.
“Having grown up in Ogden, I knew who the Englands were because one of England’s drivers lived next door, but I never imagined I would ever be married to one,” Pat said.