Features, Truckie Profiles

Lucky streak helped owner-driver achieve life’s dream

Scott Brady is a third-generation truck driver from Sydney who always wanted to be his own boss, but was never able to make it happen – until a miraculous run of luck.

The 35-year-old told Big Rigs: “Having my own truck has always been my dream.

“I was always trying to work towards it and saving money, and then something else would happen in life.

“I don’t own my own home so getting financed for a truck was really difficult.

“I failed 12 times to make it happen, and it got to a point where I was so disheartened, I thought ‘Maybe this isn’t meant to be.’”

With all the disappointment he’d been through, a friend of Brady’s convinced him he needed a holiday – and after that, things suddenly started to go his way.

“I hadn’t been on holiday in a very long time – we’re talking 10 years – but I agreed to go on a cruise with my friend.

“On the third night of the cruise, I won $10,000 on the pokies.”

Brady said he’s always been a Kenworth man, but he loves his “phenomenal” Freightliner.

After he got home, Brady told himself not to make any rash decisions.

He went back to work for Precision Logistics, where he had been a driver for the past four years.

“I told myself to be smart, and I went back driving full-time interstate.

“About a month later I was down in Sydney and due to go back to Melbourne, but the freight that we had lined up got cancelled.

“My daughter rang me and said, ‘Let’s go have dinner at the pub’, so we did.

“She went home, but I still had half a schooner left so I said I’d have a go on the pokies.

“I won the jackpot again – and this time it was $22,000.”

Brady’s dad Max poses beside his old Kenworth W model, with a young Brady in the cab.

Emboldened by his incredible run of luck and $32,000 better off, Brady decided it was time to give buying his own truck one more go.

“All of this happened, and I thought, ‘You know what? Let’s do this.’”

The day he finally got approved for financing, Brady said he was “s***ing himself”.

“I can’t even describe the emotion. It took me two days to calm down.

“I had been trying for so long. I just couldn’t believe it was finally happening.”

He started shopping around, but prices were through the roof for new trucks, and he was worried about what might go wrong with a used one.

“I’m a Kenworth man at heart, so I was adamant on buying a Kenworth,” he said.

“But I kept on eyeing up this thing that used to sit in the shed at Precision.

“It was one of four trucks that Freightliner made for Harley-Davidson, to do their shows and promotions.

“It only had 79,000km on it, and it still had the plastic on the mattress!”

The 2014 Freightliner Coronado has a 500 horsepower Detroit engine.

Long story short, Brady was able to get a great deal on the 2014 Freightliner Coronado from his boss, Rob.

“Buying it was purely a business decision, but it’s actually a phenomenal truck,” he said.

“It’s got everything except the kitchen sink.”

After Brady bought the truck, his boss asked him what he planned to do next.

“I said I was planning to go working with it, and he said he wanted me to stick around.

“He doesn’t normally use any subbies because he got burned a number of years ago.

“But he’s made an exception for me.”

Brady said Rob has been a major source of support and advice for him since he became an owner-driver.

“I’ve picked up some of my own work, but I mainly subcontract to him,” he said.

“I do a lot of runs up and down the East Coast, and sometimes to Perth or Adelaide.

“I’ve probably driven Rob mad with all my questions, but he’s guided me and put me on the right path.

“I wouldn’t be where I am now without him.”

Being an owner-driver hasn’t been a walk in the park by any means, and Brady has dealt with a lot of stress while trying to get set up.

“I didn’t realise how much things were going to cost,” he explained.

“There are a lot of hidden costs, from registration to insurance, etc.

“I was running out of money, and the truck wasn’t even on the road yet.

“I was eating spaghetti and baked beans every day. I never want to see a tin of baked beans again, I can tell you.

“I was wondering how the hell I was going to afford diesel, and praying nothing went wrong with the truck because I wasn’t going to be able to afford to fix it.” 

Brady said some people thought he was crazy to go out on his own, while others were jealous.

“People said ‘You’ve either got big balls or you’re stark raving mad!’

“I definitely learned who my real friends are, because there were only a select few who were genuinely happy for me.”

He’s very proud of what he has achieved and how far he has come in life.

“When you’re your own boss, you’re somebody of stature. You have substance on the highway – you’re not just driving for someone else.

“When I was young, I got in with the wrong crowd and I was running amok, getting into a little bit of trouble.

“All I ever really wanted was for my dad to be proud of me. He was so proud of me the day I got my truck, and I’m proud of myself too.”

Brady says his dad Max, who has been a truckie all his life and now works for Hy-Tec Concrete in Sydney, taught him everything he knows.

“My dad is a very professional operator – he drove for various companies over the years and he’s still driving, he’s a stubborn bastard!

“He taught me everything from how to drive – when I was just 10 years old – to how to load various freight profiles. I am so grateful to my dad for his support over the years.

“I also owe a lot to my brother Daniel Cool, who is a mechanic with Precision Fleet Maintenance and has done a lot of work on my truck.”

Sharing his goals for the future, Brady said he’s not out to become a millionaire, but plans to keep working hard and slowly build up his business. 

“One day I would like to have five to 10 trucks, and ultimately, I would love to be in a position where I could give a job to someone who really needs it.

“I left school in Year 8, but that doesn’t mean I’m not a good worker, or that I don’t have any value.

“I just needed someone to have some faith in me, and I’d love to be that person for someone else.”

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