Bridgestone Americas Announces Grand Prize Winners in the Teens Drive Smart Video Contest

Aug 05, 2013, 10:17 ET from Bridgestone Americas, Inc.

NASHVILLE, Tenn., Aug. 5, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- For three students, college just got a little cheaper, thanks to their winning video submissions in the Bridgestone Teens Drive Smart Video Contest.

Nicole Ricketts of Anaheim, Calif., received the top prize – a $25,000 college scholarship, for her winning video, "Driving is Beautiful." University of Pittsburgh sophomore Tosh Chambers won second place and a $15,000 scholarship for his video, "Technically Almost Legal," and Natalie Barrios took the third spot and a $10,000 scholarship for her video, "Safe Driver." Martha Levytsky of Bronxville, N.Y., was given a Critic's Choice award and a $2,500 cash prize for the video she produced, "Times Not to Text."

This year's winning videos competed with more than 1,800 submissions from 16-21 year olds across the United States to become one of the top 10 finalists. Nearly 8,000 votes helped determine the top three videos and Bridgestone judges then ranked the winners. The three winning videos, along with the other top 10 finalists, can all be viewed at

"After seven years of holding this contest, I'm encouraged that we continue to receive such creative videos from passionate young adults who take an interest in making our roads safer," said Angela Patterson, Manager, Teens Drive Smart Program, Bridgestone Americas. "Ultimately, our goal is to help teens make the right choice behind the wheel, but we know that message is communicated much more effectively when it comes from a peer."

In addition to receiving a college scholarship and a free set of Bridgestone-brand tires, the three winners have the chance to have their video broadcast as a public service announcement (PSA) on television stations across the United States.

About the winners:
First Place: Nicole Ricketts is a rising junior at Hope International University in Anaheim, Calif., where she is studying business administration. Her video, "Driving is Beautiful," aims to show the blessings, the beauty, the adventure and the fun that teen driving can be, while emphasizing the responsibility drivers have to preserve that beauty. Behind the wheel, drivers have a choice to respect the law and avoid reckless and irresponsible behavior. Driving is a gift, one that shouldn't be taken for granted. Accidents may be inevitable, but the best way teens can be safe is to be smart.

Second place: Tosh Chambers is a rising sophomore at the University of Pittsburgh, where he is planning to major in film. His video, "Technically Almost Legal," shows multiple distractions in the car that should be avoided for safety purposes, even though not all of them are illegal. Chambers was inspired by recent laws on texting and driving and wanted to highlight other activities that are equally as dangerous but have not received the same attention.

Third Place place: Natalie Barrios is a rising senior at Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers, Fla., where she is studying English. Her video, "Safe Driver," is a spoof on infomercials, advertising the ultimate safe driving companion. It showcases the special features and versions of the "Safe Driver" product while explaining the danger of distractions that teens face behind the wheel every day. She was inspired by the number of accidents that occur because of distracted driving.

Critic's Choice: Martha Levytsky is a rising senior at Sarah Lawrence College in New York, where she is studying film making. "Times Not to Text" gives a comedic look at the absurdity of texting while driving. As humorous as it seems to text while mid-surgery, Levytsky's video shows that texting while driving needs to be treated in the same, if not greater, respect.

About Bridgestone Americas, Inc.:
Nashville, Tenn.-based Bridgestone Americas, Inc. (BSAM) is the U.S. subsidiary of Bridgestone Corporation, the world's largest tire and rubber company. BSAM and its subsidiaries develop, manufacture and market a wide range of Bridgestone, Firestone and associate brand tires to address the needs of a broad range of customers, including consumers, automotive and commercial vehicle original equipment manufacturers, and those in the agricultural, forestry and mining industries. The companies are also engaged in retreading operations throughout the Western Hemisphere and produce air springs, roofing materials, and industrial fibers and textiles. The BSAM family of companies also operates the world's largest chain of automotive tire and service centers. Guided by its One Team, One Planet message, the company is dedicated to achieving a positive environmental impact in all of the communities it calls home.

SOURCE Bridgestone Americas, Inc.