When crowned champion of the Operator of the Year 2011 Irish National Final back in May of this year, Samuel Millar, of Ballymena, expressed his sheer delight at his win stating: I’m really looking forward to the Grand Final and I’m hoping to do well.’ With just two months to go until the big final, to be held on 16th September at the RTITB Headquarters in Telford, Shropshire; Samuel, like the other 9 Grand Finalists, is getting ready for the big day where he will have a chance to shine and an opportunity to win the coveted title of Operator of the Year.
Of the looming final Samuel said: ‘I’m excited for the big day and really looking forward to the challenge.’ Details of the 8 tests the competitors will be expected to complete have been kept a secret from the finalists, with the details to be revealed on the morning of the final. Although he is unaware of what’s to come, Samuel is still feeling positive about his abilities: ‘I’m feeling confident in the sense that I’ve done some minor practise. I’m just going to give it my best go. I’m not by any means saying I’m going to win it, just that I’m confident in what I need to do.’
With no knowledge of what’s to come and potentially a minor recollection of what the tasks entailed at the Irish National Final which was hosted by Daralinn Training Ltd in Blanchardstown, Dublin, Samuel is aware that he cannot prepare for the unexpected, but on preparing for the Grand Final said: ‘I’ve not done any additional practise as such, I’ve just been adhering to the correct health and safety procedures that I must follow in my day-to-day job. I don’t want to over-prepare, I just want to make it as difficult as possible for everyone else!’
With 6 years experience in lift truck operation, Samuel, who was trained by Woodhill Training Services, has been extremely complementary of the Operator of the Year competition, which is currently in it’s second year, stating: ‘It was very well organised and enjoyable. I also found it extremely useful for my development with health and safety practise when operating fork lift trucks.’ When asked if he would recommend the competition to other operators within industry Samuel said: ‘Definitely! It gives you credit as a lift truck operator. It’s a lot of fun, a good day out and a great way to meet some new and interesting people.’
Samuel will be joined by Irish National Final runner-up, Brendan Meagher of Portarlington, County Laois. The Grand Final daytime event is open to the public who can register their attendance via the RTITB website, www.rtitb.co.uk/fltcompetition. Attendees will be able to watch all 10 Grand Finalists compete for the chance to win a brand new car, meet the RTITB team and enjoy the selection of entertainment and refreshments that will be offered throughout the day.