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June 4, 2019 2:45 PM, EDT

2018 Grand Champion Chris Outen Set to Go for Gold in Flatbed Class at Oregon Truck Driving Championships

2018 Oregon Truck Driving Championships Grand Champion Chris Outen with Oregon Trucking Associations President Jana Jarvis FedEx driver Chris Outen, the 2018 Oregon Truck Driving Championships Grand Champion, poses with his plaque next to Oregon Trucking Associations President Jana Jarvis. (TT file photo)

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Last year’s Grand Champion, Chris Outen of FedEx Freight, will compete at the Oregon Truck Driving Championships, taking place June 8 at Reddaway in Portland. This time, though, instead of participating in the Sleeper Berth division, which he won last year, he will be in the Flatbed class, according to Vilija Jozaitis, marketing and communications manager for the Oregon Trucking Associations. The event will feature about 120 drivers and 60 volunteers.

OREGON ARCHIVE PAGE: Previews, recaps and more

2019 NTDC

The 2019 National Truck Driving Championships

Qualifiers | Map | Photos | Video

Who: Winners from nine categories at the state level have advanced to the national competition, where a Grand Champion will be crowned

What: Contestants are judged on a written examination and their driving skills

When: Aug. 14-17

Where: Pittsburgh

“We do have a lot of new companies participating, quite a few rookies this year, about 40, and some previous TDC winners,” Jozaitis said. “We’d like to see what some of the newer drivers can do.”

As always, safety will be featured at the forefront of the competition.

“[Safety] is very important,” Jozaitis said. “We had 500 attendees last year, send out a press release, invite our legislators and list the public event on various sites with clear messaging about the importance of safety.”