Husband and wife Alberto Fontanari and Eva Del Marco have a shared passion for driving. So much so, they have both qualified for the Italian Scania Driver Competition finals, with Eva becoming the only woman in Italy to reach the deciding stages.
Perhaps it’s unsurprising that Alberto and Eva have both qualified because their relationship is based on mutual support and a shared passion for driving. The couple grew up together, have had a relationship for more than 20 years, and finally got married six months ago.
They live with their young daughters Silvia and Giorgia in the village of Pergine Valsugana in northern Italy’s Trento Province, where the couple operate a haulage company that bears Eva’s name.
Eva’s idea to register for Scania Driver Comp
It was actually Eva who had the idea of taking part in the Scania Driver Competition.
“I was confident of Alberto’s skills but he never wanted to enter previous editions. This year I decided to register him at any cost but he only agreed if I also enrolled. We never thought we would both qualify but here we are.”
Thirty-eight-year-old Eva says that her passion for driving was kindled when she was still a child. “Thanks to our relationship, that passion developed and it became our profession,” she says.
Alberto, 42, has always encouraged Eva to devote herself to her driving.
“He encouraged me to obtain all the necessary licenses and then obtain the certificate that allowed us to start our business in 2005,” Eva explains.
A business built on mutual support
Alberto on the other hand was born into the business. His father owned a transport company but closed the business before his son was in a position to take over. Initially, Alberto worked as a driver before founding Delmarco Trasporti with Eva. They started with an old small pick-up truck before buying their first Scania. The next three trucks were also Scania and the fleet has since grown to seven vehicles.
“We almost exclusively operate in Italy, including the islands. At the moment, we don’t operate abroad because there’s such intense competition,” says Eva.
These days, Alberto is often still out on the road, but Eva mainly focuses on managing the company in order to care for their daughters.
“Before our girls were born, we travelled together as a couple and on longer journeys we took turns driving,” she says.
“Later, when one of our drivers quit, I started driving myself for two years. I would take assignments during the day to carry out administrative work during the evenings.”
Gender is no barrier to truck-driving
As the only woman to qualify for the Italian finals, Eva Del Marco is happy to say that her gender has never been an issue for her in the world of haulage.
“I’ve never encountered any problems being a female driver; no prejudice. This profession offers you the opportunity to meet new people, see new places and broaden your horizons.”
“The chance to practise a job you like is the most beautiful thing in the world. As tiring and demanding as it is, it is welcome, since every day and every journey brings great satisfaction.”
And what if Giorgia (9) and Silvia (7) wanted to become long-haulage drivers?
“If our girls also develop a passion for driving and one day wish to pursue this career, we will happily encourage them,” says Eva, smiling.