Inducted into the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame at ReUnion 2012.
Peter Bottams started his driving career in 1968 at the age of 22. His first job was for Jackie Reynolds who was based in Melbourne and the first truck he drove was an International AB single drive prime mover with a 32 ft. trailer. Peter’s second truck, still driving for Reynolds, was an International R190.
In 1969 Peter commenced driving for Mick Travlos doing local deliveries around Melbourne. His first interstate trip was Melbourne to Adelaide towing a fridge van. Soon he was driving to all states but mostly Brisbane, Sydney and Adelaide. His driving career had really started.
Brian Dent who was subcontracting for Coldstorage was Peter’s next employer. The truck he drove was a slimline Kenworth with no sleeper and he hauled Melbourne to Perth. Life was made much more comfortable for Peter when Brian purchased a cab over Kenworth 871 with a sleeper. At this time he was doing regular hauls from Melbourne to Darwin. He has fond memories of his days with Coldstorage which was, at that time, the largest privately owned trucking company in the southern hemisphere. The drivers were a unique bunch of truckies in their easily recognised cab over Kenworths with the penguin emblem on the skis on each side of the vans.
When Tony Nivens took over Coldstorage Peter began driving all over the country for two years, then took a break and worked for Shell only to return to Coldstorage. When Cyclone Tracy hit Darwin Peter was stopped at Ti Tree for a break on his return to Melbourne. He decided to have a six month break from interstate driving. When he returned he worked for Travlos again running Melbourne to Perth.
Peter decided to buy his first truck; a Commer V653 and hauled steel and general around Melbourne. He also did some work for Mayne Nickless. In 1979 he purchased a Kenworth and worked all states with a fridge pan trailer carrying perishables. He gave up interstate again and drove locally then spent some time working in the yard or office for Sartoris.
After buying a B-Model Mack he sub-contracted until 1985 and then purchased a second Mack, an FR700. Two Mercedes Benz followed and back he went on interstate. He then purchased his first Scania and continued with interstate. In 2002 major leg surgery forced a 15 month break. On his resumption of work he hauled scrap metal for three years with Total Care Transport.
Currently Peter owns five trucks: four Scanias and one Kenworth and is still working locally in Melbourne moving general.