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Expect stiff competition at the Washington Truck Driving Championships, which will be held June 22 at the Reddaway Terminal in Tacoma.
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
Last year’s state Grand Champion, Darrell Shelton, will not be making a run this year. But a longtime Washington winner, Chris Poynor, will be a driver to watch.
Poynor, who drives for XPO Logistics, won the top prize in 2016 and 2017 in the Twins division at the National Truck Driving Championships. The competition was held in Indianapolis in 2016 and Orlando, Fla., in 2017. Poynor, along with 109 other drivers, will be looking to head to this year’s national stage in Pittsburgh. He will be competing in the 3-Axle division.
Mike Southards, the Washington Trucking Associations safety director, said that the competition brings together the best of the best, and he especially enjoys when the public comes out to watch the drivers do their thing and show off their hard-earned skills. He also expects about 60 volunteers to help with the event.
In addition to the state truck driving championships, the Washington State Patrol will hold its annual inspectors’ challenge. There are 14 officers signed up for the event this year.
WASHINGTON ARCHIVE PAGE: Previews, recaps and more
Southards told Transport Topics that the state driving competition is important to the drivers and to the state association.
“Truck drivers don’t get enough good credit,” Southards said. “They’re the ones that feed America.”