Carquest Corporation has named, Carquest Belts & Hose, a division of The Gates Corporation, as the 2002 Vendor of the Year. The Denver-based automotive belt and hose supplier also won the award in 1996. Carquest member companies and distributors annually grade their vendors and base the award on several performance standards including product quality, catalog coverage, marketing and sales programs and overall operations. According to Todd Hack, Carquest executive vice president, “It takes more than just being a ‘good vendor’ to receive this prestigious award. To be considered, it requires a focus on teamwork, a commitment to continuous improvement and a track record of going above and beyond what is expected.” Hack added, “Over the last few years, Carquest Belts & Hose has shown a renewed focus on our partnership and the success of Carquest. They have an experienced team of professionals whose primary objective is to grow our business together. And, they have one of the best sales organizations that is dedicated to keeping Carquest competitive in the automotive aftermarket. They have earned a reputation as the vendor that consistently strives to exceed the needs of our professional technician customers.” Representing Carquest Belt & Hose at the award presentation, Jay Guddat, vice president, credited his group for adopting technology advancement tools when dealing with their customers on a daily basis. “We armed our field sales force with an arsenal of electronic data and software programs that they used to increase Carquest sales throughout the United States and Canada,” Guddat explained. “Our objective is to use technology to make it easy for our customers to do business with us so that when any of our accounts call anyone in the Carquest Belts & Hose organization, we make it happen for them,” he said. Guddat recognized the Carquest sales and marketing teams in Canada, as well as the extra efforts of personnel at the Florence, Ky., Salt Lake City and Iola, Kan., distribution centres.